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Latin America, briefly

PUERTO RICO –Best know local filmmaker, Jacobo Morales, now shooting “Linda Sara” (“Pretty Sara”), produced by Blanca Morales. Also in production is “Rice, Dreams And Ketchup,” directed by Joe Vazquez.

BUENOS AIRES — Exhibs complain that the young folks are spending their pesos on big rock concerts and live entertainment. Madonna and Michael Jackson packed ’em in last year, with $ 150 antes.

BUENOS AIRES — Rabeno Saragusti, leading distrib/exhib in-country, plans to open 18 screens in the capital this year. He said more and more moppet pics are being released dubbed. “Beethoven,””Home Alone I and II” were dubbed and were hits. “Dennis the Menace,” subtitled, flopped.

SAO PAULO — Film producer Anibal Massaini has teamed up with the Alvorado circuit to open the 1,100-seat Metropolis salle for legit and musicals.

RIO — The Gramado Film Festival, which used to screen only Brazilian pics, is now going international. Event, skedded to unspool Aug. 7-14, will also host a multimedia market, organized by former Embrafilme sales topper, Antonio Urano.

RIO — Offshore sales of TV Globo product last year totalled about $ 25 million, according to sales topper Jorge Adib, with Portugal now repping 40% of billings thanks to startup of two private webs there. As for spot ad revenue, Adib says that tallied around $ 700 million last year, not counting revenue from Globo’s 49 affils. Less than a quarter of that amount was billed by competing webs Silvio Santos, Bandeirantes and Manchete.

RIO — Exhib/distrib Ugo Sorrentino says a total of 25 new screens are due to bow this year in the affluent Barra de Tijuca and Sao Conrado.

RIO MPEA rep Steve Solot says that homevid revenue exceeded theatrical in Brazil by 130% in 1992. Latin America reps 7% of the world market for the U.S. majors (cinema, HV and TV).

MEXICO CITY — Program topper of recently privatized Channel 13 (now monickered TV Azteca) Guillermo Zubiaur, says that some $ 80 million is earmarked for renewal of the web over the next three years, of which 20 million is for software purchases.

MEXICO CITY — The Mexican Film Institute spent about $ 3.5 million in subsidies for local film production in 1993, up 60% over previous year. Recently completed is Maria “Danzon” Novarro’s “The Garden Of Eden,” produced by Jorge Sanchez with a Canadian co-producer.

HOLLYWOOD — “Como Agua Para Chocolate” has already drawn 500,000 spectators in Argentina since it bowed at the end of ’93, says Alex Chionetti of Star Intl. Films, who sold pic to The Film Distribution Co. in Buenos Aires. Film is also doing well in Chile, where it’s being released by Jose Daire. Star has picked up rights to such other items as “Fresh” (only for Mexico), “Shattered Image” and “Thunder In Paradise.” Chionetti also reps Ledafilms for the U.S.

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