SAN SEBASTIAN — In a rare double-whammy, “Rey’s Education,” directed by Argentina’s Santiago Esteves, won both the prizes on offer Wednesday night at the San Sebastian Festival’s Films in Progress, one of the highest-profile pix-in-post competitions in Europe.
First conceived as an eight-segment TV mini-series that won a fiction contest at Argentina’s Television Digital Abierta, cop thriller-drama “Rey’s Education” snagged both the Films in Progress 30th Industry Award, given by a clutch of Spanish distributors and service houses, and the Caci/Ibermedia TV Films in Progress Award.
Esteves’ first feature, “Rey’s Education” kicks off with Reynaldo Galindez, “Rey,” a 14-year-old petty criminal, pulling his first job. Escaping, he falls into the patio of a retired security guard, damaging his home. The guard proposes a pact: Rey repairs the damage caused to his home in return for not being handed over to the police. As Rey begins working, the guard attempts to tutor him in the lessons of life. But Rey’s past begins to catch up with him….
“It’s a classic story featuring one person who is getting to the end of his life and another who is just beginning,” said Esteves at San Sebastian, after the Films in Progress award ceremony. He added: “This is very common in the crime world. We’ve tried to transfer the classic training of a warrior to the west of Argentina, which is rarely seen in Argentine movies.”
The Films in Progress 30th Industry Award is supported by companies Daniel Goldstein, Deluxe-Spain, Dolby Iberia, Laserfilm Cine y Video, Nephilim Producciones, No Problem Sonido and Wanda Vision. It covers the cost of a film’s post-production and offers distribution in Spain.
Backed by Caci, the association of Latin American film agencies, the Ibermedia TV Films in Progress Award consists in a grant of $25,000 for non-exclusive broadcast rights on Ibermedia TV, a program screening movies from Latin America, Spain and Portugal on public broadcasters in the region.