Atipica produces $4 million comedy

BARCELONA — Spanish helmer-writer Daniel Sanchez Arevalo, the leading light of Spain’s newest generation of directors, rolls May 10 on his third feature, comedy “Primos.”

“A really audience-targeted comedy,” Sanchez Arevalo told Variety, “Primos” is produced by Madrid-based Atipica Films and has been pre-bought by Spanish pubcaster TVE and Canal Plus Spain. Producer Jose Antonio Felez puts the budget at $4 million.

“Primos” turns on “three slightly lamebrain first cousins who go back to the small-town where they spent their holidays during childhood and adolescence.

“It’s a story of romantic re-encounters and people trying to escape from themselves,” Sanchez Arevalo said. “Primos” is mostly set outdoors, during the town’s annual fiestas.

Key cast includes Antonio de la Torre, Quim Gutierrez and Raul Arevalo, all of whom appeared in Sanchez Arevalo’s first or second pics.

Also recently attached is up-and-coming actress Clara Lago (“For the Good of Others,” “The Hanged Man”).

Sanchez Arevalo has also remained faithful to key craft and tech collaboators such as d.p. Juan Carlos Gomez, who was cinematographer on Sanchez Arevalo’s sophomore pic, “Gordos.”

“Darkbluealmostblack,” Sanchez Arevalo’s debut, was a crisply-lensed intimate drama with comedic touches; “Gordos,” a sardonic portrayal of society’s obsession with slimming, which nabbed $2.5 million in Spain, hiked the comedy; “Primos” is a full-blooded laffer.

Created last year, production shingle Atipica “aims to produce a couple of pics a year, helmed by young talent, budgeted on average from $2.5 million to $4.5 million, and targeting large audiences,” Atipica founder Jose Antonio Felez told Daily Variety.

“Primos” will shoot entirely in Comillas, a small town in the northern Spanish region of Cantabria, where the director’s father and grandfather came from.

Sanchez Arevalo’s latest credit as a writer was Oskar Santos’ Berlinale Panorama player “For the Good of Others,” godfathered and co-produced by Alejandro Amenabar, which opens Thursday in Spain.

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