BUENOS AIRES — In what is certainly a first for Latin America, perhaps for the world, Argentina’s film authorities have unveiled a dedicated public-sector incentive support for genre and fantastic cinema and web series production and development.
Together with Blood Window, one of the major parts of Buenos Aires’ Ventana Sur which has the backing of genre players across the region and from Spain, the move adds new energies to Argentina’s genre scene at a time when many young filmmakers in Latin America see fantastic cinema or TV creation, or at least the adoption of some of its narrative tropes, as one way forward for their budding careers.
Announced at Blood Window on Thursday, the initiative will see Argentina’s Instituto Nacional de Cinematografia y las Artes Audiovisuals (INCAA), Argentina’s central public-sector film, TV series film funder, create five subsidy lines. The endowments will be backed by 13.85 million Argentine pesos ($875,000), which might not seem a huge sum but, targeting a reduced number of features and development, is manna from heaven for the local fantastic cinema.
Incentives will be adjudicated in five categories: First Features, shorts, web series, web series development, and feature screenwriting, said Juan Aramburu, INCAA contents production manager.
Two features will receives 4 million pesos ($250,000) each, a web series, which INCAA requires to be a minimum six-seg half hour, will be supported with 1.7 million ($107,000) repping about 85% of its budget and ceding international rights from the get-go to its producer, Aramburu added.
Six prizes will go to web series development. Led by Sitges Festival’s Angel Salas and San Sebastian’s José Luis Rebordinos, two international juries will decide winners which will be announced at the Cannes Festival’s Blood Window Gala screening next May, said Bernardo Bergeret, iNCAA head of international affairs.
Targeted genre/fantastic content incentives will make it far easier for first time directors to apply for INCAA subsidies, said INCAA president Alejandro Cacetta, arguing that the sector showed significant growth potential, as has been demonstrated by Ventana Sur’s Blood Window.
Just how large that potential is has been shown by the U.S. box office where three movies from young filmmakers born in Argentina or neighbouring Uruguay – Andy Muschietti (“Mama”) and Fede Alvarez (“Evil Dead” and “Don’t Breathe”) – have opened No. 1 at the U.S. box office.