Chile’s Nicolas Lopez (“Aftershock”), Eli Roth’s partner in their Chilewood production-talent hub and one of the pioneers of homegrown geek comedy and genre entertainment in Latin America, has teamed with Netflix to finance “Sin Filtro” (No Filter).
Producing out of Santiago de Chile’s Sobras Intl. Pictures with longtime partner and producer Miguel Asensio Llamas, Lopez’s films cut two ways: English-language productin with Eli Roth, on which Lopez directs – 2012 earthquake horror movie “Aftershock” – produces – “The Green Inferno” or also co-writes – “Knock Knock” and Spanish-language comedies aimed at Chile’s domestic market, where Lopez has huge media impact, but with international upside: “3rd World Cops” grossed $1.3 million off 60 screens in 2014, beating out Hollywood contenders to the crown of highest-grossing comedy in Chile of the year.
With “No Filter,” and a Netflix partnership, Lopez aims to have the best of both worlds. He originally thought of making “No Filter” in English. “But the whole process would take two years,” he said. So wrote “No Filter” in Spanish in a month, secured Netflix funding, and was shooting one month after finishing the screenplay. Big Chiloean indie distributor BF will release “No Filter” in Chile on Jan. 7. Netflix will release it worldwide from May.
CAA is meanwhile shopping the English-language remake rights of “No Filter,” which Lopez said he’d love to direct.
“I did the movie I wanted to make and own it. It’s easier to make a English-language movie that way. Instead of showing a screenplay, it’s just: ‘You know what? This is the movie I want to remake.’”
With its trailer currently racking up two million hits on “Facebook,” the movie Lopez wanted to make is one targeting a hugely underserved demography when it comes to local comedies in Latin America – or beyond – women.
Lopez broke out at the age of 20 with 2004’s high-school nerd gross-out “Promedio Rojo,” which Quentin Tarantino called one of the funniest movies of the year.
“No Filter” may suggest a new maturity. Starring Paz Bascuñan, “Chile’s Jennifer Aniston,” per Lopez, it is, ironically for its Facebook play, an anti-technology comedy of frustration.
“With Facebook, webcams, messaging, basically with technology, people end up being far ruder because they don’t have to say anything to anybody in person,” Lopez reflected.
“No Filter” turns on Pia who works at an ad agency which deems her over the hill at 37, giving her a 20-year-old blogger boss. She lives in a world where “nobody looks at your eyes anymore, they’re looking at their cell-phone. A whole generation is so obsessed with themselves that they don’t care about anybody else,” Lopez commented. One day, Pia blows, and decides to speak her mind to everybody to their faces.
In one celebrated scene in “No Filter’s” trailer, Pia has a drink with her best friend, who spends the whole time texting: Pia takes her friend’s cell-phone and drops it in a glass of orange juice.
“When we released the trailer, everybody said: “I would love to do that,” Lopez said.
“No Filter” is Lopez’s first film with a female lead. “I always wanted to make films for a female audience. Nobody’s making interesting films for them.”
“I also wanted to make a movie for grown-ups, which deals with what happens when suddenly everybody is telling you you’re old,” he added.
This isn’t the first time Lopez has tested the remake business. His 2010 Spanish-language “Fuck My Life,” a post-breakup romantic comedy, now has a Mexican remake toplining Aislinn Derbez, the daughter of Eugenio Derbez and star of the Pantelion-distributed “A la mala,” which made $3.6 million in the U.S and rates as the second highest-grossing Mexican movie in Mexico. Produced by Balero Films and Sobras Intl. Pics, and backed by Videocinta/Televisa, it looks set for a huge release in Mexico next year via Televisa’s Videocine in Mexico and Pantelion in the U.S. The plan, if “Fuck My Life” clicks of course, is to adapt Lopez’s “Fuck My…” trilogy.
Lopez’s creative focus however, is currently on working with CAA on the English-language remake of “No Filter.”