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RAI Cinema slashes Hollywood buys

Del Brocco: 90% of slate to be Italian movies

ROME — Italy’s RAI Cinema is increasing its domestic product output to the detriment of Hollywood acquisitions, largely due to the country’s economic crisis.

Announcing his 2013 lineup in Rome, Paolo Del Brocco, managing director of Italo pubcaster RAI’s production/distribution arm, noted it’s made up of 90% of Italian movies, a roughly 20% increase compared with past years.

“The number of American movies has greatly decreased,” Del Brocco noted.

“At a time of particular (economic) crisis in our country, we have decided, for some time now, to increase our investment in Italian cinema, partly in accordance with our public service mandate,” he said.

The non-Italian remainder of RAI Cinema’s offerings next year is however almost entirely made up of Hollywood titles of different genres, from Ron Howard’s Formula One pic “Rush” and Mikael Hafstrom’s action thriller “The Tomb,” toplining Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone, to Terrence Malick’s “To the Wonder.”

In general RAI Cinema is veering away from auteur cinema toward more mainstream and crossover fare, as evidenced by a slate packed with comedies and genre pics.

Del Brocco said RAI’s annual spend for domestic productions is set at Euros 50 million ($64 million) which is up Euros 5 million.

The RAI Cinema chief would not disclose how much spend has been allocated for foreign movie acquisitions. But that sum is believed to be around $20 million for next year, some $7 million less than in 2012.

The Italian pic on RAI Cinema’s 2013 slate with greatest international potential is “Siberian Education” by Gabriele Salvatores, starring John Malkovich, which it will release in Italy in February, possibly after a Berlin bow.

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