Chile’s Storyboard Media and Cine Matriz are teaming with Colombia’s Romeo on documentary feature “Still Stares,” the debut feature of director Patricia Correa. Gabriela Sandoval and Carlos Núñez will executive produce for Storyboard Media, with Consuelo Castillo filling the role on behalf of her company Romeo.
Storyboard’s latest doc “The Sky Is Red” is playing in the main competition at IDFA, continuing to solidify the company’s position as one of Chile and Latin America’s leading independent producers. The company’s most recent success, “Jailbreak Pact,” has been an international sales hit for agent Meikincine following a local release in January, which pulled in the highest box office for a Chilean film in more than two years.
Romeo was founded by Castillo in 2018 and is in post-production on Gisela Rosario’s “Perfume de Gardenias,” a Puerto Rico co-production and recipient of the Cinematographic Development Fund in Colombia, the Ibermedia Fund in Spain and the Tribeca Film Institute Latin America Fund. Castillo is also in development on Carlos Lechuga’s next feature “Vicenta B” and documentary “Rio Rojo” from director Guillermo Quintero, co-produced with French company Stank and a recent winner of backing by the CNC in France.
“Still Stares” is the intimate story of Miguel, a 38-year-old hunter and taxidermist who uses his unusual vocation to create a museum which allows blind children to safely learn to live with and respect animals. At first glance, Miguel paints a picture of a hard, almost ruthless man, but as the story unfolds, a softer, sensitive side emerges.
At 37, Miguel has not achieved financial independence due to the low income from his work. He still lives with his parents in a large apartment in the wealthy community of Las Condes. It’s there that he has built up his workshop, earning a meager living doing his taxidermy. His well-to-do neighbors don’t care for his work however and grow weary of animal corpses in the elevator and the smell of rotting flesh in the garbage bins, eventually organizing to bar him from continuing his vocation.
Pushing middle-age, Miguel’s friends have built lives of their own with partners, families and new priorities that don’t leave much time for Miguel’s hunting trips. The time is fast approaching when he will have to decide if the life he’s always had can provide the future he wants.
“All of the above will highlight the absurdity of the contrasts that his story offers, constructing a documentary loaded with black humor. This film will take us on an emotional journey, inviting us to reflect on how we relate to animals, directly facing the subject and its complexities through Miguel and his world,” Sandoval told Variety.
Committed to supporting the film as best it can, Storyboard has participated in several markets and networking events such as TFI Network 2019 and June’s Cannes Film Market, where the partnership with Romeo was finalized. One goal of the production is to fill at least 80% of leadership roles with women. One such example is Melisa Miranda, who worked on Storyboard docs “Adriana’s Pact” and “El Negro,” who will team up once again to edit “Still Stares.”
“I met Paty while her project was in development at the southernmost artist residency in the world, ARCA in Puerto Williams, Chile. What I found was a powerful project with a unique look which can connect with a diverse and wide audience,” recalled Sandoval.
“I remember sending a message to Consu about an extremely interesting project I thought we could produce together. We have always wanted to work with Consu, both as long-time friends and also to benefit from her extensive experience in the Latin American cultural sector in production, management and distribution,” she added.
“In ‘Still Stares’ I found a deep vision from a director who is capable of uncovering a soul like Miguel’s, but who is also capable of making us face our fears, loneliness, attachments and loves,” Castillo told Variety.
“One of the things that excites me most about working with Gabriela is her decisive look and how she has developed her filmography as a producer. We are also united by the need to produce films which can build audiences of our cinema. We’re sure that ‘Still Stares’ will find a place in the hearts of many people who will fall in love with this story,” she added.