MEXICO CITY – Jirafa Films (“Much Ado About Nothing,” “The Future”) and Forastero (“The Maid”), two of Chile’s very top production outfits, are teaming to make “Prueba de Actitud” (Attitude Test), signaling the entry into more mainstream comedy – though still with social point – of two of Chile’s most prestigious production houses.
Unveiled Thursday in early rough cut at the Miami Festival’s Encuentros pix-in-post competition, “Attitude Test” also marks the feature directorial debut of producer Augusto Matte and star Chilean stand-up comedian-actor-scribe Fabrizio Copano.
Produced by Forastero partner Florencia Larrea (“Aurora,” “Crystal Fairy & The Magic Cactus”), and co-directed by Jirafa Films producer Matte, teen comedy “Attitude Test” also reps a still relatively rare play for the young adult audience in Chile – addressed most notably to date by Nicolas Lopez in his “F…k My…” trilogy– as well as a hallmark mix for Chile of genre – here suave party party comedy – and social issue concern.
Written by Copano, who stars in “La Culpa es de Colón,” which airs on Comedy Central South America, and co-scribe Valeria Hofman, who penned Chilean telenovelas, such as TVN-aired “Matriarcas,” and “Las chucaras,” “Test“turns on four not exactly brainiac girl students, more into blokes than books, who steal their SAT university entrance exams, and depart to the beach to learn the answers off by heart. Disaster: They lose the tests at a party, and are desperate to get them back.
“The film focuses on being 18 and the pressure of deciding what you want to do for the rest of your life. It also reflects on Chile’s education system, how these college exams don’t really test students’ intellectual capacity,” Copano said.
“Most of the highest-grossing Chilean films are comedies,” Copano added. Exhibit A: Nicolas Lopez’s “No Filter,” which, though targeting a more mature audience than YA demos, has just punched one million tickets, making it the highest-grossing original Chilean movie at Chile’s domestic box office.
Over the last five years, Chile’s film industry can put in a claim to be the most big-fest-laureled of any foreign-language cinema in the world: Think Pablo Larrain, Patricio Guzman, Andres Wood, Pepa San Martin, Roberto Doveris, Marialy Rivas.
Frustratingly, this best fest kudos bonanza has not translated to date in a significant local domestic share, although that may improve, said Matte, citing Nicolas Lopez’s “No Filter” and Larrain’s upcoming “Neruda.” From some time back, Chile’s industry is looking to issues which connect with its public. “Attitude Test” is a film that talks about Chile, though its issue affect young people everywhere.”
A film which targets Chilean and international audiences, said Larrea, “Attitude Test” is also femme-centric when in Chile these types of comedies always had men protagonists,” said Larrea, though “No Filter” has bucked this trend.