Producers to gather in San Sebastian

Gallic companies will attend fest's Tuesday forum

San Sebastian– Some of France’s most prestigious production houses will attend the 5th San Sebastian CRC Co-production Meeting.

Taking place Tuesday at the San Sebastian Festival, the forum’s 20 Gallic companies include Coproduction Office, Haut et Court, Orly Films, MK2, Memento Films and U Media.

They will meet a bevy of Madrid-based companies including Alta Films, Amigo Prods, Grupo Ganga Prods, Intuition Media and Out of the Box.

Also attending the meet are some of France’s most cosmpolitan producers, such as Cine-Sud Promotion’s Thierry Lenouvel and Les Films du Requin’s Cyriac Auriol, who both makes films out of every corner of the world.

Part of a series of co-prod forums, held at Berlin, Cannes, San Sebastian and Rome, the CRC San Sebastian meet is organized by the Ile de France and Madrid Film Commissions and focuses on potential co-prods from Paris and Madrid.

Of Spanish projects attracting early attention, helmer-producer Juan Estelrich’s company Picueno is tub-thumping the $1.8 million “Paris-Francfort,” based on the stage play “The Unexpected Man,” by France’s most famed femme dramatist Yasmina Reza. Spanish actress Emma Suarez (“The Mosquito Net”) is attached.

Helmer Maria Ripoll (“Tortilla Soup,” “Your Life in 65”) is set to direct the $4 million action thriller “Hitsville.” Patrick Juarez’s Intuition Media is co-producing with Mexico’s Fractal Communications. Intuition

has to date pulled down $2.2 million financing; Marina Fuentes’ 6 Sales handles international rights.

From France, Mab Production and Les Films du Grillon are moving $2.5 million dramedy “La Main tendue.” Project’s attractions include helmer Daniel Prevost and Gerard Depardieu, slated to star as a suddenly widowed actor.

One of the meeting’s most commented projects looks likely to be Frank Chiche’s “I Have Understood You.”

In the vein of “Waltz with Bashir,” “Understood” addresses a historical subject – here, the Algerian War of Independence – in an animated feature. As on “Waltz,” Arte France co-finances.

“The meeting has already become a consolidated event, complementing the festival as a European co-production platform,” said Samuel Castro, Madrid Film Commission head of international relations.

“This is one of the key and most practical France-Spain film meetings in all of the year,” added Olivier-Rene Veillon, Ile de France Film Commission exec director.

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