MADRID – Already a major source of private film financing in Spain, commercial web Antena 3 TV looks set to drive further into film production via its Aurum Producciones film and TV division, run by Francisco Ramos.

According to Ramos, Aurum’s CEO, the division is aiming to develop and produce up to three features a year from 1997. These would form part of a total annual slate of eight to 12 movies. The remainder, as has been Aurum’s practice to date, will be made by indie Spanish producers with Aurum co-financing.

Aurum’s inhouse projects will seek to tie in upmarket local directors such as Imanol Uribe (“Bwana”) or Fernando Colomo (“The Butterfly Effect”) who could also oversee production management duties, Ramos said.

In another new initiative, Aurum has four TV series in development. The first, a one-hour primetime action drama series, will have a pilot ready in February, directed by young helmer Agustin Villalonga.

Aurum reaped kudos in 1996 by co-financing Spain’s submission for the foreign-language Oscar, Uribe’s anti-racist “Bwana,” which also won the top Golden Sea Shell at the San Sebastian festival.

Further upping the ante, Aurum recently struck a co-production pact for two feature films with top Spanish producer Andres Vicente Gomez.

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