Tornasol spends $300k on’Cigarettes’

Twenty projects had competed for prize

GUADALAJARA, Mexico — Spain’s Tornasol Films has awarded a E250,000 ($300,650) co-production prize to Paraguayan project “18 cigarillos y medio” (18½ Cigarettes ).

The prize, awarded late Monday, was launched this year for the second Iberomerican Co-Production Meeting at the Guadalajara Intl. Film Fest.

Twenty projects from Spain and Latin America competed for the prize.

“Cigarillos,” a portrait of a day in the life of a young man obsessed with getting back with his ex-girlfriend, was directed by Marcelo Tolces and produced by Renate Costa.

Producers Don Ranvaud of U.K.-based Buena Onda Films and Karl Baumgartner of Germany’s Pandora Films announced at the meet they would co-produce a Mexican project, “Cochochi,” by tyro director Laura Amelia Guzman and producer Israel Cardenas of Blueberry Films. Film, about two indigenous children caught between their native culture and mainstream Mexico, is backed by Mexican thesps Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna’s Canana Films.

Producers hailed the co-production meeting as a big improvement over last year’s pitching market. They praised the quality of the projects, which already have some financial backing, as opposed to the previous year’s pitching market, which featured unfinanced scripts.