Decine alters distrib biz with incentives

Company launched by Ham, Rubio

GUADALAJARA, Mexico — Two former execs of studio affiliates in Mexico have launched independent distrib Decine (Distribuidora de Entretenimiento de Cine) that is radically altering conventional distrib relationships with local producers.

Decine was founded by Richard Ham, a former marketing exec of 20th Century Fox Mexico and defunct local distrib Nuvision, and Nicolas Rubio, once with Universal Home Video Entertainment.

Producers must defer their salaries until their pics’ distribution, meaning Decine can offer them 47% of their film’s box office earnings instead of the standard 8% in Mexico, according to Ham.

As an added incentive, Decine charges only an operational fee instead of a distribution fee. “In return, we insist on keeping to a strict production budget and P&A spend,” he added.

Company deals solely with Mexican pics, preferably made for no more than $1 million.

Decine’s main objective is to improve distribution — only 18 local pics hit the bigscreen out of 36 productions last year.

Company has released two pics: dark comedy “Santos peregrinos,” which outgrossed “Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason” at the wickets, and police action pic “Ver, oir y callar.”

Decine has boarded a slew of projects, mainly at the post-production stage. Company is exec producer of Gustavo Loza’s “Al otro lado,” which has been submitted for consideration at Cannes.

Other pics on its slate include Guadalajara fest favorite “Club eutanasia” and comedy “American Visa,” which it plans to release on 350 prints. Comedy is helmed by Juan Carlos Valdivia and toplines Demian Bichir and Kate del Castillo.

Decine also has boarded pics at script level, starting with “Mujer alabastrina,” the feature debut of Rafael Gutierrez, which starts shooting in May; “La nao de China,” the helming debut of “21 Grams” scribe Guillermo Arriaga’s sister Patricia Arriaga; and Nacho Ortiz’s “Mezcal.”

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