LOCARNO – Adding to its line-up of almost all new directors from Latin America and Europe, Mexico City and Paris-based NDM, the sales company launched by Carlos Reygadas and his producer Jaime Romandia, has acquired world sales rights to “Maquinaria Panamericana” (“Pan-American Machinery”).
Mexico’s scribe-helmer Joaquin de Paso will talk up “Maquinaria,” now in post-production, at the 1st Locarno Fest Industry Days Match Me! A business forum for new and often little-known members of Latin America’s newest generation of directors and producers, Match Me! takes place Aug.-8-10 at the Swiss festival.
The tale of a heavy machinery factory that seems to have survived with very little change down the years, “Maquinaria” kicks off as the company is plunged into chaos by the discovery that Don Alejandro, its boss, has dropped dead at the back of the warehouse. owner Don Alberto. That changes everything – the company is bankrupt, the elderly workforce have no prospects of employment elsewhere and no hope of any retirement funds. In a state of confusion, fear and grief , they plan collective action. Whether that will right matters is very much open to doubt, however.
Del Paso’s Amondo Films and Susana Bernal’s Black Maria produce; Romandia executive produces out of Mantarraya, which won Cannes best director award two years running with “Post Tenebras Lux” and “Heli,”
Story carries a large allegorical resonance for Mexicio and elsewhere. “The situation in Mexico is so fragile, economically and politically, that people live in a constant state of fear,” Del Paso commented.
He added: “We hold on to what we have earned with desperation, and just the idea of a new crisis leads to collective panic. We are a society standing at the edge, willing to do everything to stop the disaster, but paradoxically, our attempts to organize as a group always lead to more chaos and social polarization.”
NDM’s pick up is the second on a Locarno Mexican title after Latido took Julio Hernandez Cordon’s International Competition player “Te Prometo Anarquia.”
Mexico has few international sales companies, though they are significant: NDM and Mundial, a joint venture of IM Global and Canana.
Energized by government tax breaks and the break through of a young generation often prepared to work way below scale, Mexico’s production levels have risen to modern highs: 130 films produced in 2014. In such a context, one indicator of a potentially promising title are fest-market awards at project or production. Screening at the Toulouse CineLatino Fest’s Films in Progress, “Maquinaria Panamericana” won 1st Prize Riviera Maya Fest Work in Progress Award and a Co-production Award at the Guanajuato Pitching Market. Another indication is a sales agent’s pick-up.
“We are very happy to have ‘Maquinaria Panamericana’ as part of the NDM catalogue. Joaquin comes to join the group of talented first filmmakers we are working with like Jonas Carpignano and Gabriel Ripstein. For us ‘Maquinaria’ brings fresh air to the contemporary Mexican cinema,” said NDM head Fiorella Moretti.