RTVE to spend $49 mil on local films

Spanish pic outlay broadly level with 2009

Pubcaster Radio Television Espanola is standing by Spanish cinema, earmarking about E36 million ($49 million) for broadcast rights to local movies this year.

Recent pickups include Jaume Balaguero’s thriller “Flatmate,” Daniel Sanchez Arevalo’s comedy “Primos” and live-action adventure pic “Capitan Trueno.”

RTVE’s outlay is broadly level with last year and comes as commercial webs Telecinco and Antena 3 downsize their commitment, making RTVE and Italo pubcaster RAI the biggest broadcast network investors in national cinema in Southern Europe this year.

Having nixed advertising, RTVE will run down its international rights acquisitions and sales operation, head of cinema Gustavo Ferrada told Daily Variety.

Despite restricting its pickups — pre-buys made at script stage — to just Spanish broadcast rights, RTVE will pay broadly similar coin per pic, Ferrada added.

The pubcaster’s war chest is also good news for international cinema: 14 of RTVE’s 31 pickups last year were international co-productions. Pubcaster will continue looking for auteur pics with larger audience appeal, Ferrada said. It will also acquire mainstream Spanish pics, classic art pics, young directors’ movies, and films made in Catalan, Basque and Galician, he said.

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