BERLIN — RB Cinema 1, the Brazilian equity fund behind today’s Berlinale competish contender, “The Year My Parents Went On Vacation,” has launched a Brazil-based international sales, distribution and film financing company.
Company, which bows at Berlin, has yet to settle on a name, but management and films are in place.
RB Cinema has tapped Katia Machado as its chief operating officer. Former Cannes Directors Fortnight artistic director Francois Da Silva, currently an artistic advisor at Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp, has been hired as an artistic consultant for Latin America.
As a distributor will buy all rights to upscale niche fare the all Latin America or just Brazil, sub-distributing or selling on rights.
Its first four-pic slate are all films in which RB Cinema has invested bridging finance: It has taken Latin American and select South East Asian rights to Eric de Castro’s EuropaCorp production “Federal,” Cao Hamburger’s “Year,” “The Greatest Love of All” from Carlos Diegues, and Carlos Cortez’s deb “Quero.”
But the company will feed its sales slate third-party pickups, said RB Cinema manager and new shingle VP Thierry Perrone.
A seasoned sales/production exec, Machado worked for a decade at France’s Hamster Prods. She then produced films, putting together France-Brazilian Panorama 2004 screener “The Other Side of the Street,” with Fernanda Montenegro.
The new company faces large challenges. Some recent Brazilian films have garnered strong crits and long fest runs. But sales have been scarcer.
Brazil lacks arthouses, let alone a large middle-class avid for offbeat fare.
Per Machado, on Brazilian pics the company will be able to put down minimum guarantees and co-prod coin at a film’s screenplay stage, aiding their development. No other Brazilian sales company offers such guarantees.
RB Cinema is backed by risk capital firm Rio Bravo Investimentos, paper manufacturer Aracruz Celulose and state-backed BNDES National Bank for Social and Economic Development.