L.A.-based film vet Peter Marai has created a new Buenos Aires-based arthouse distributor, Mirada distribution.
The first release from Mirada is Andrzej Wajda’s “Katyn,” which Marai bought from Germany’s Betafilm. Pic will open in July.
Marai aims to bow 10-12 films a year, releasing them in Buenos Aires through Marcelo Morales’ Arteplex 10-screen arthouse chain.
Other early buys include Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s “Distant” and “Three Monkeys,” both from France’s Pyramide; the Match Factory-sold “Grbavica,” a mother-daughter drama by Jasmila Zbanic; and the Steve Buscemi-Sienna Miller two-hander “Interview,” from Cinemavault.
In early Cannes trading, Marai also closed down Edgar Keret’s “Jellyfish” and Karin Albou’s “La Petite Jerusalem.”
Mirada’s launch comes as arthouse audiences are contracting in some territories, such as Spain. Other territories, such as France and the U.K., are seeing a release glut.
In Argentina, however, there are still market opportunities, Marai maintained.
Argentina has a large tradition of arthouse cinema and thousands of film students. Other Argentine indies — Alpha, Primer Plano, 791 Cine, Pachamama, Impacto — tend to spread buys across a range of films. Mirada will be more of a straight-arrow buyer of art pics and new discoveries, Marai said.Mirada will buy all rights to Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay and sometimes Chile.