Spain’s Alta picks up ‘Heroes’

Pau Freixas pic looks at first love

BARCELONA — Top Spanish art-house distrib Alta Films has taken rights to “Heroes,” produced by Barcelona-based Media Films and pubcaster TVC.

Helmed by Pau Freixas (“Dark Chamber”), and set in an unspoiled village on the Costa Brava in the 80s, “Heroes” is an unabashed hymn to first love and the end of adolescence.

Coming-of-ager is penned by Freixas and playwright-turned-director Albert Espinosa (“Don’t Ask Me to Kiss You Because I Will.”) With a decent $5.6 million budget, feel-good “Heroes” is expected to be one of the strong local titles at Spanish wickets this fall.

Alta’s acquisition confirms their continuing search for quality pics with B.O appeal, able to cross over to wider auds, a policy that has served them well over recent years.

“‘Heroes’ is especially targeted at Spanish baby-boomers — now in their 40s — but aims to seduce younger auds too,” Alta head of acquisitions Enrique Gonzalez Kuhn explained. “It reminds me of Christophe Barratier’s ‘The Chorus,’ which we also released in Spain,” he added.

“Heroes” received substantial backing from the Catalan Institute of Cultural Industries (ICIC) and Catalan pubcaster TV3, with $2.4 million of public coin pouring into the film.

Catalan-language “Heroes,” Kike Maillo’s melodramatic sci-fier “Eva,” Agusti Villaronga’s coming-of-ager “Black Bread” and Daniel Benmayor’s historical actioner “Bruc,” are the first four flagship productions of a new Catalan government film policy aiming to beef up the local industry by providing funding for higher-end productions with B.O. traction.

Pic will be released in Spain Oct. 22 on Spanish-dubbed prints only, except in Catalonia where the original Catalan version will also screen.

Recent Alta acquisitions include Olivier Assayas’ “Carlos,” Stephen Frears’ “Tamara Drewe” and Diego Luna’s “Abel.”

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