Spanish distributors, who have enjoyed a strong track record selling remake rights to local pics, have received a major boost this year with the Malaga Festival Industry Zone’s (MAFIZ) inaugural Remake Day event on Thursday.
Leading film sales companies, among them Cinema Republic, Latido Films, Filmax and Feel Content, presented showcases of films considered particularly adaptable to foreign markets. Not surprisingly, comedies and genre pics made up most of the selections.
David Castellanos’ Cinema Republic offered one strong example with Borja Cobeaga’s hit 2009 romantic comedy “Pagafantas,” which has over the years sold to Germany, Italy and Mexico.
Cinema Republic also touted Icíar Bollaín’s “Rosa’s Wedding” (“La Boda de Rosa”), about a woman in her mid-40s who decides to finally take charge of her life and fulfill her dream of starting a business.
In Robert Bellsolà’s 2014 laffer “Dos a la Carta” (“Menu for Two”), another Cinema Republic title, a big city stockbroker and a dim-witted small-town slacker discover they are brothers and end up sharing their deceased father’s estate, a failing country restaurant in the middle of nowhere.
Iván Díaz, head of international at Filmax, said the company has had recent success with Jaume Balagueró’s 2011 horror pic “Sleep Tight,” which was remade in South Korea by Kwon Lee as “Door Lock,” becoming a major hit in the country when it was released in 2018. In 2021, Orkenbek Baysenbay directed a Chinese version, “Men suo,” known internationally as “The Door Lock.”
Filmax initially focused on remake rights to genre films but has since significantly diversified its slate, Díaz said. “So we have a lot of experience now with remakes.”
Díaz added that Filmax’s strongest IP at the moment was probably “Sentimental” (“The People Upstairs”), Cesc Gay’s award-winning comedy about two couples exploring the complexities of modern day relationships, remake rights of which have already sold widely in Europe and North America. Italy’s Lotus Production shot an Italian version, “Vicini di casa,” last year.
Filmax has also had huge international success with its hit TV series “The Red Band Society.”
Latido Films’ large showcase included Javier Fesser’s 2018 box office hit “Campeones” (“Champions”), about a basketball coach who, after a drunk driving charge, is forced to coach a team of people with disabilities as community service.
Other Latido titles included:
- “Wishlist,” Álvaro Díaz Lorenzo’s comedy-drama about two women with cancer and another friend who make a bucket list and set off to do all the things they always wanted to do but never did;
- “Cuerdas” (“Ropes”), José Luis Montesinos’ horror thriller about a paralyzed girl forced to fight for her life after her service dog is infected with rabies;
- “My Masterpiece,” Gastón Duprat’s comedy about an unscrupulous art dealer and his socially-awkward painter and long-time friend who come up with a ludicrous plan to save themselves;
- “At the End of the Tunnel,” Rodrigo Grande’s thriller about a paraplegic computer engineer who discovers that a gang of robbers are planning to break into a bank;
- “The Heist of the Century,” Ariel Winograd’s fact-based Argentine heist comedy about a group of thieves who robbed the Banco Río branch in Acassuso, Argentina, in 2006.