Alta nabs Trapero’s ‘Elefante’

Distrib inks Spanish rights with prodco Morena

MADRID — Spanish arthouse distributor Alta Classics has picked up theatrical and home entertainment rights to social drama “Elefante blanco,” the upcoming film by Argentine helmer Pablo Trapero (“Lion’s Den,” “Carancho”).

Trapero’s biggest film in budget at €4 million ($5.3 million), “Elephant” is produced by Spain’s Morena Films, Trapero’s Matanza Cine and Disney-backed Patagonik, in co-production with France’s Full House.

It toplines Ricardo Darin (“The Secret in Their Eyes”) and Belgium’s Jeremie Renier (“L’Enfant”) as priests who, along with a social worker, played by Martina Gusman (“Lion’s Den,” “Carancho”), battle to build a housing complex in a Buenos Aires slum burb, flying in the face of Church authorities and warring drug cartels (see Weekly Variety, Dec. 5).

The shoot kicked off late November in Buenos Aires and will travel to Bolivia for Central America jungle action before ending in January. Post-production takes place in Spain.

Morena shot Iciar Bollain’s 2010 colonization tale “Even the Rain” in Bolivia.

“Rain” and “Elefante” consolidate a business model that features Europe-Latin American co-production, burning issues highlighted in a Latin American context, and Latin American talent, shoots and costs.

Alta distributed “Rain,” scoring a standout $5.2 million at the B.O. this year. It will manage home entertainment rights through its Barcelona-based partner Cameo. Pubcaster TVE pre-bought Spanish free-to-air TV rights.