Industry meet a highlight of Paris' Different!
MADRID — Alex Brendemuhl’s “Carnaval, carnaval,” Cesc Gay’s “A Gun In Each Hand” and “Seven Days in August,” from Jon Garano and Jose Mari Goenaga, figure among a strong lineup for Small Is Biutiful, an industry meet on June 17 in Paris.An increasingly popular gathering for Spanish producers seeking French distribution or co-production on modestly budgeted but often intriguing projects, Small Is Biutiful is one highlight of Spanish film festival Different!, an annual Paris event run by Alain Coiffier and Jose Maria Riba’s Espanolas en Paris. Daniel Bruhl (“Inglourious Basterds,” “Intruders”) has committed to co-star in “Carnaval, carnaval.” A tragicomedy, “Carnaval” marks the feature directorial debut of actor Brendemuhl (“The Hours of the Day”) who helmed absurdist short “Worstward Ho,” a 2009 Cannes Competition player, and also co-wrote Rafa Cortes’ Rotterdam Tiger winner “Me.” “Carnaval” turns on 40-year-old small-time real estate agent in mid-life crisis seeking easy answers to what constitutes success in life. Barcelona’s Voodoo Prods. produces with Cromosoma. Eduard Fernandez (“Biutiful,” “The Skin I Live In”), Javier Camara (“Talk To Her”) and Alberto Sanjuan (“Under the Stars”) rep first key cast on ironic ensemble comedy “Gun,” from top Catalan auteur Gay (“Krampack,” “Fiction”), said Marta Esteban, its producer at Impossible Films (“Land and Freedom”). The identity crisis pic shoots from November, partly in Argentina. A political thriller budgeted at Euros2.8 million ($4 million), “August” reps a step-up in ambition for Garano and Goenaga, who attracted attention with “80 Days,” a Basque lesbian romance. Produced by San Sebastian’s Irusoin, “August” is based on a real-life 1963 assassination attempt on dictator Francisco Franco that led his regime to execute two innocent men. Barton Films holds Spanish distribution rights. Chosen from 33 applicants, selected Small Is Biutiful titles come with solid Spanish financing, said Coiffier. Forefronting originality — in subjects, treatment or financing — the lineup also reflects the strength and diversity of regional production in Spain, Riba added. Of other titles, woman’s drama “Brava,” from Roser Aguilar, whose “The Best of Me” won a Locarno Silver Leopard, is produced by Iberrota Films, based out of Bilbao and Madrid. An arresting psychological thriller, “Cannibal,” from Manuel Martin Cuenca, whose “La mitad de Oscar” played Toronto last year, is set up at Almeria’s La Loma Blanca. Tarragona’s KaBoGa produces “Sonata for Cello,” which toplines Carme Elias as a concert cellist suffering from fibromyalgia, a chronic disorder. Karma Films distributes in Spain. Section’s only docu feature, “Hielo,” from Alvaro Gimenez Sarmiento and Maria del Puy Alvarado, is produced by Madrid’s Malvalanda. Biutiful climaxes with a sneak peek at first excerpts from Miguel Angel Jimenez’s buzzed-about “Chaika,” presented at last year’s edition and now in post-production. Running June 15-21, Different 4! is backed by Spain’s Icaa film institute and the Ile de France Film Commission.