Capra-esque dramedy to shoot in New York
Spain-U.K.-based producer Enrique Posner, Spanish director Paco Arango and screenwriter Ron Bass are teaming on the English-language “Eleven Percent,” in which ordinary people in a New York tenement block are suddenly given control of a major U.S. bank.
The completed screenplay is by Arango and Bass (“Amelia,” “Rain Man,” “My Best Friend’s Wedding”), who were connected by Harvey Weinstein.
Budgeted at about $15 million, the fantasy dramedy turns on an eccentric old lady who on her death bequeaths her misfit New York City building tenants 11% equity in a big American bank that is on the verge of a massive merger.
“It’s a great feel-good story about the human heart,” Arango said.
“Eleven down-and-out individuals are given a chance to change the financial system when they unexpectedly gain control of a major bank,” added Arango, whose 2011 feature debut “Maktub,” with “Lost’s” Jorge Garcia in a secondary role, also channels Frank Capra’s championing of the ordinary folk in a tale of a family man whose chance meeting with a 15-year-old cancer victim helps save his marriage.
“Eleven” will be produced by Posner, a former managing director of Warner Bros. Pictures Intl. Spain.
Over the last five years, he has divvied up his time between oversight of high-tech companies and high-profile Spanish animation films made out of Kandor Graphics in southern Spain, on which he has taken associate or exec production duties.
The latest, “Justin and the Valour of Knights,” one of Spain’s big bows for 2013, opens this September.
“Eleven” is skedded to go into production next February shooting in New York with “an ensemble of fairly high-level of American actors,” Posner said.
“Eleven” joins the build in European films, clearly seen at last week’s Cannes Festival, which are tending transAtlantic bridges meshing European and U.S. finance and talent on an English-language project with U.S. cast.
A Spanish-nationality production, “Eleven’s” financing will include equity funding from Europe-based high-net-worth individuals, Spanish tax breaks, New York tax credits, and U.S. or international partners, Posner said.
Also, Posner argued, “Eleven” touches the Zeitgeist: “One of the most interesting things about working with Paco is that he’s looking to tell stories that have a reason for being.”
“We hope ‘Eleven Percent’ will become a locomotive for a broader discussion about what roles financial players should play in peoples lives.”
Arango dedicated the profits from “Maktub” to the building of a bone marrow transplant unit at Madrid’s Nino Jesus Hospital.