Chilean director Che Sandoval (“Much Better Than You”) will lend his keen sense of character and sharp ear for dialogue to “Lots of Ex, Little Sex,” from “The Maid” producer Forastero, and Rizoma, a driving force behind the New Argentine Cinema.
Now at a final draft screenplay, “Ex” is being moved at Toronto by Forastero partner Florencia Larrea and its new executive produce, Lucas Engel.
A dramatic comedy, per Sandoval, “Ex” will star Argentine Antonella Costa, who broke through as a Dirty War torture victim in Marco Bellis’ “Olympus Garage,” and starred in Eduardo Mignona’s “The Wind” and Alejandro Chomski’s “Today and Tomorrow.”
Costa plays Marcela, a 35-year-old Argentine singer who was a sex-fiend until 30, then falls in love and, when dumped, become frigid and loses her voice. Finally, she meets Chilean Carlos, who turns her on, and pursues him to Chile, thinking he’s her last chance with a man.
“This is a dramatic comedy, of contradictory characters who make jus laugh at the situations they live; dramatic because it recounts the story of a life which is frustrated on all levels: Love, sex, emotions,” per Sandoval.
Sandoval broke through with two comedies that used torrents of dialogue, non-pro actors – notably director Sebastian Brahm in “Much Better than You” – and rough-and-ready indie technique. “Ex” will employ far more elaborate camera set-ups and pro actors, he said.
“Ex” tapped Chilean Film Fund coin, for both development and production and is skedded to roll from Feb.-March 2016 in Argentina and Chile. Production standards will also be higher, Larrea said.
Co-production with Argentina was “organic,” given the story, she added. At the same time, however, “before there was a trend to seek money in Europe,” Larrea told Variety. But, she added: “We believe in co-production with other countries in Latin-America – there’s financing and a crossover in concerns – to grow our region’s cinema, as Europe used co-production to grow its industry.”
Because of its nearness and an affinity of its film institutions, Chile-Argentina co-productions have hiked fast, leveraging a bilateral co-production treaty, said Constanza Arena, exec director of the CinemaChile film board. Eight in 2010, co-productions reached 13 in 2014, before dipping slightly to 11 this year, per 2015 stats from Chile’s Audiovisual Art and Industry Council.
Launching as a production house with Golden Globe nominated “The Maid,” a 2009 Sundance World Cinema Grand Jury Prize winner, Forastero had made straight-arrow auteur movies, such as Julia Sotomayor’s “Thursday Till Sunday,” sold by L.A.-based FiGa Films, but had driven ever more into auteur genre, such as an upcoming generational revenge horror project it will be soon be launching ion the international market, Larrea said.
Engel has joined Forastero to hike private sector finance on films, whether through investors or sponsorship deals.
A classic production house owned by Hernan Musaluppi and Natacha Cervi, Rizoma has produced Martin Rejtman’s “Magical Gloves,” Rodrigo Moreno’s “El custodian,” which won a Berlin Alfred Bauer Prize, Adrian Biniez’s “Giant,” a Berlin Grand Prize winner, and Victoria Galardi’s debut, “Lovely Loneliness,” a San Sebastian Youth Jury Award winner, which reps a move towards the mainstream, as does Sandoval’s “Lots of Ex, Little Sex.”