Arena Multimedia kicks off with 'Fish'

Vertigo Films, one of Spain’s main indie film buyers, is broadening its business scope by launching multiplatform distribution-production label Arena Multimedia.

Arena will release Spanish and Latin American pics in theaters, and handle TV movies, docs and series for DVD, VOD, Internet and TV platforms.

Its first theatrical release is Chilean scribe-helmer Matias Bize’s re-encounter drama “La Vida de los peces” (The Life of Fish), a Venice Days player, which bows April 1.

“In a second phase, Arena will add other business lines such as TV production and movie co-production, mainly with Latin America,” said Arena topper Roberto Sanz.

Arena also plans to offer consultancy services for young Spanish producers.

Arena execs believe there’s room for new businesses, in spite of the ongoing financial woes in Spain’s film and TV industries.

“Only the biggest Spanish films find distribution, mainly via U.S. majors, but there are many other movies that have huge difficulties getting distributed,” said Sanz. “In a crisis environment, a new company is better positioned than older distributors to adapt to market changes, finding new film exploitation formulas.”

Spain’s growing number of startup digital terrestrial TV services is boosting demand for smallscreen content.

As a multiproduct TV supplier, Arena has already started negotiations with foreign distribs that could be finalized at April’s Mip TV mart in Cannes.

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