ShowEast Honoree: International Achievement in Distribution Award

For Griselda Fortunato, legwork is key for film distribution.

The general manager of Warner Bros. and 20th Century Fox Argentina, who for more than 10 years in the post has handled distribution of such pics as “The Dark Knight” plus the “Lord of the Rings” and “X-Men” trilogies, hits theaters on weekends to talk with exhibition execs to gauge film expectations, helping her develop, reinforce and fine-tune marketing strategies, screen counts and release venues.

The effort helped secure wide distribution for “The Simpsons Movie” despite initial skepticism from exhibitors on the appeal of a TV product. The result: It was the highest-grossing film ever in Argentina, better than “Titanic.”

It worked with “Speed Racer,” too. Despite Stateside B.O. disappointment, her team found hot anticipation. So they pressed ahead with a big splash, and Argentina, with fewer than 1,000 screens, became the world’s 10th-highest-grossing territory for the pic.

“It is important to see what is happening in the streets,” she says. “Not everything is predictable.”

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