Warner Bros Increases its commitment to Spanish talent

Warner Bros Pictures International Spain increases its commitment to Spanish film production, in volume, budgets and talent

Warner Bros largely acquired and later distributed in Spain around six national films a year, the Hollywood studio now plans to invest in, or officially produce, between eight and ten films a year, with casts full of Spanish stars and top talent. of direction.

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Warner Bros Spain presented its 2020-21 program at the San Sebastian Festival, betting on giving a greater boost to Spanish production that will also make the Hollywood studio continue to partner in a joint development fund with Atresmedia Cine, a non-exclusive alliance which is emerging as a key production axis in the Spanish film scene.

In San Sebastián, Warner Bros Spain presented to the media five Spanish titles from its 2020-21 list of premieres, all produced by Atresmedia Cine, in association with Buendía Estudios, and presented exclusively to Variety a scene from Moomios, the upcoming characteristic animated feature film from Warner Bros Spain.

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In the scene, the handsome protagonist Tut, a chariot driver, living in a world below the pyramids populated by very living Ancient Egyptian mummies, faces a battle of egos with the beautiful daughter of Pharaoh. While the two assure each other that the sparks are guaranteed not to fly, one gets the impression that they are both simply putting on a bold front.

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Moomios is a Warner Bros Spain production, made at 4 Cats Pictures, a company founded by Jordi Gasull (Tadeo Jones, Catch the flag), who co-wrote and produced. Featuring lavish animation, with a touch of 2D finesse in the character design, Moomios is slated to premiere in late fall or Christmas 2021.

In a bullish statement of Spanish film potential, the five Atresmedia Cine-Warner Bros films involve some of the biggest names in the Spanish industry.

Barbara lennie (Magical Girl) will star in God's Crooked Lines, a period mystery thriller with a genre twist. Set in a psychiatric ward, he has a charismatic woman before her time who enters a psychiatric ward to investigate a homicide. Or so she says. Oriol Paulo (The invisible guest, Mirage) directs; Filmayer and Nostromo also produce.

Santiago Segura, whose Father there is no more than one 2 has obtained a gross of 11.9 million in Spain this summer, will direct, head and produce A Todo Tren, a crazy comedy about Atresmedia Cine, Bowfinger and Amiguetes trains, scheduled for filming of January 11.

The Red Band Society writer Albert Espinosa has written Live Is Life, a story from the 1980s "Stand By Me" that is now wrapping up filming in Galicia. Directed by Dani de la Torre (Elite).

Daniel Monzon (Cell 211) is filming Las Leyes de la Frontera, written by Alex de la Iglesia's co-writer Jorge Guerricaechevarría, a story set in 1978 about teenage summer love with a social twist.

Other WB-Atresmedia Cine titles include Mamá o Papá, a preview of San Sebastián, a remake of the 2015 French original Papa ou maman, but now starring Paco Léon (Arde Madrid); and the dramaturgy Los buenos manners, written and directed by Marta Díaz de Lope Díaz.

To date, the content boom in Spain has largely revolved around series, such as La Casa de Papel, whose fourth season was viewed worldwide by 65 million Netflix households in its first four weeks.

The same factors that prepared that boom abroad may also benefit Spanish films, Pablo Nogueroles, Warner Bros. Pictures Intl. Spain Senior Vice President and General Manager, told Variety.

“There are 500 million people who speak Spanish, 48 million in the United States alone. Warner Bros. has acquired Spanish films for the last 20 years, but now we want a little more skin in the game. "

Warner Bros is awarding international rights to titles, such as the great period romance El Verano que Vivimos, produced with Atresmedia Cine, Bambu Producciones and La Claqueta, and the theme of a benefit screening in San Sebastián this year.

Additionally, budgets on select titles are expanding. Compared to Paulo's previous films, the Renglones setting will represent "a quantum leap" in production value, he said in San Sebastián. Moomies has a budget in the range of 11 and 12 million dollars, "expensive for Spain, but a fraction of the cost of what it would cost to do it in the United States," Nogueroles said.

China is another potential growth market for Spain, said Mercedes Gamero, general director of Atresmedia Cine, noting that Oriol Paulo's Contratiempo and Mirage raised just over $ 31 million and $ 17 million respectively.

And he added: “People sometimes think that Atresmedia Cine only produces local comedies. Our list is much broader, as this presentation of San Sebastián underlines ”.

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