Ibero-American congress planned

Antonio Banderas to attend Mexico City event

MADRID — Film stars such as Antonio Banderas, orgs, name directors and top producers from Spain, Latin America and Portugal will huddle at a pioneering mega-meet, the first Ibero-American Culture Congress, which runs Oct. 1-5 in Mexico City.

The congress will feature multiple seminars, round-tables, a Luis Bunuel exhibition — “Bunuel Between Two Worlds,” a recent retro of production from the region, “Historias en comun,” and a Manoel de Oliveira tribute as the Portuguese helmer turns 100 this year.

On paper, the congress is reminiscent of the macro-meetings that took place around Europe from the mid-’80s and gave momentum to the creation of the EU’s Media Program in 1989.

Spain, Portugal and Latin-America already have a similar, and important initiative, Ibermedia. One big question is whether the congress could give it more financial muscle in co-production coin for films from the region, or in further aid to pics’ distribution throughout the area.

Film authorities will debate film, TV and new media policies over two mornings.

Proposals coming out of the congress will be fast-tracked to the Ibero-American heads of state summit in El Salvador Oct. 29-31, said Spanish culture minister Cesar Antonio Molina, who conceived the idea for the congress.

“There will certainly be debates (at the congress) about how films from Ibero-America can circulate more,” said Alvaro Hegewich, from Mexico’s Conaculta culture ministry.

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