×

Inside Content Takes Emma Suárez-Starrer ‘Josefina’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Starring ‘Julieta’s’ Suárez, ‘Josefina’ one of the five projects developed at the ECAM Madrid Film School’s pioneering Incubator program

SAN SEBASTIAN — Geraldine Gonard’s Inside Content has swooped on “Josefina,” acquiring world sales rights outside Spain and Germany to the Spanish movie project, which has already attached laureled Spanish actress Emma Suárez, star of Pedro Almodovar’s “Julieta,” to play the female lead.

One of the five film titles to be put through development at the ECAM Madrid Film School’s pioneering Incubator development program, “Josefina” is co-produced by Madrid’s White Leaf Producciones and Berlin’s One Two Films, whose recent films include Jennifer Fox’s “The Tale” and Isabel Coixet’s “The Bookshop.”

Producer Sergy Moreno is now beginning to reach out to potential actors comparable in stature to Suárez to play the male lead.

Described by Inside Content’s Geraldine Gonard as a romantic drama with lighter touches and a deft but penetrating criticize of contemporary societal ills, “Josefina” will be directed by Spanish short filmmaker Javier Marco (“One,” “The Dress,” “Classmate”). It turns on Juan, a timid dowdy 50-year-old who conceives an attraction for Berta. Trouble is: He is a prison officer and Berta the mother of one of the inmates. So Juan, in a flight of imagination, passes himself off as another parent visiting the prison in order to see his also incarcerated daughter, Josefina.

Josefina’s presence, however fictitious, facilitates a relationship between two people with grave emotional deficiencies, “lending an optimism, and moments of near surrealism and comedy to the film,” according to screenwriter Belén Sánchez-Arévalo.

Popular on Variety

In a whimsical touch, it is Josefina who narrates the film and even chooses its music.

Suárez, who lends humanity to more or less any role she takes, also confirmed her range starring as a mother from hell in Michel Franco’s “April’s Daughter,” will play Berta. Also attached are two fine Spanish character actors: Manolo Solo (“The Fury of a Patient Man”) and Mabel Ribera (“The Sea Inside”), the latter as one of Berta’s neighbors.

“Josefina” portrays “two people who meet at a singular moment, in a film with a reduced number of location – the jail, a bus, their homes. The film packs a “deep and subtle but critical study of what is happening in contemporary society,” said Inside Content founder Gonard, calling “Josefina” a “mature film, intelligent and strongly written, with a lot of work on its characters.”

The Incubator’s five projects were chosen from 216 applications, from first or second-time directors from anywhere in Spain, nit just ECAM alums. Such a rigorous filter has proved a magnet to players in Spain’s movie industry from Movistar+ and Netflix to Mediaset España and Atremedia and RTVE who have visited the initiative to explain their financing priorities and become acquainted with the program.

Inside Content also co-organizes Conecta Fiction, the highly successful Latin America-Europe TV co-production forum which celebrated its second edition this June in Galicia’s Santiago de Compostela, northern Spain.

More Film

  • (center) George MacKay as Schofield in

    '1917,' 'Succession' Among Top PGA Award Winners

    “1917” continued its string of major awards season wins on Saturday night, earning the Producers Guild of America award for best picture. Coupled with its win for best picture, drama at the Golden Globes, the WWI movie is officially the front runner for Oscar’s top prize. “It’s a film that is a tribute to all [...]

  • Bong Joon Ho, Jane Rosenthal, David

    Netflix Praised by 'The Irishman,' 'Marriage Story' Filmmakers at Producers Guild Panel

    Streaming giant Netflix received strong support from filmmakers behind “The Irishman” and “Marriage Story” at the Producers Guild of America’s nominees panel on Saturday at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles. Jane Rosenthal, one of “The Irishman” producers, said Netflix embraced the vision that she and Martin Scorsese had for the $170 million film. [...]

  • Gabriel Harel on MyFFF ‘The Night

    Gabriel Harel Discusses Dystopic Parable ‘The Night of the Plastic Bags’

    With his first short film, the animated “Yùl and the Snake,” Gabriel Harel won Europe’s Cartoon d’Or for the continent’s best animated short film, given at the 2016 Cartoon Forum in Toulouse. Now, Harel’s awaited sophomore effort, the animated “The Night of the Plastic Bags,” competes at UniFrance’s MyFrenchFilmFestival, and is available on a swathe [...]

  • MyFrenchFilmFestival: Profiling Benjamin Crotty’s Short ‘Nicolas

    ‘The Glorious Acceptance of Nicolas Chauvin’: Nationalism Wrapped in Charisma

    Winner of Locarno’s Signs of Life section, Benjamin Crotty’s “The Glorious Acceptance of Nicolas Chauvin” has enjoyed more than 12 months of festival success and critical acclaim as it reaches the end of its festival run at UniFrance’s MyFrenchFilmFestival. A modern take on one of France’s most influential yet widely unknown characters, the film headlines [...]

  • Alexander Ludwig

    Alexander Ludwig on Sharing his Recovery Journey, Playing the 'Bad Boys' Tech Guy

    With his towering height and stature, Alexander Ludwig looks every bit the action star, first appearing as Cato in “The Hunger Games,” and more recently as fierce Norse Viking chief Bjorn Ironside on History Channel’s “Vikings” and in “Bad Boys for Life,” the third installment of the “Bad Boys” franchise, with Will Smith and Martin [...]

  • Will Smith and Martin Lawrence star

    Box Office: 'Bad Boys for Life' Scores Big With $66 Million Launch

    “Bad Boys for Life” is showing plenty of power at the North American box office with an impressive  launch of around $66 million at 3,740 venues over the four-day holiday weekend. Sony’s sequel to 1995’s “Bad Boys” and 2003’s “Bad Boys II” far exceeded the studio’s pre-release forecasts of a $38 million weekend. The film, [...]

  • A Bump Along the Way Movie

    'A Bump Along the Way': Film Review

    While “Derry Girls” continues to be the last word in young, raucous female rebellion on the Emerald Isle, “A Bump Along the Way” has a little something to add. Sin the same Northern Irish city as the hit Netflix sitcom, but shedding the ’90s nostalgia for the Snapchat age, Shelly Love’s appealing, unassuming debut feature [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content