Behind the red carpets, cameras, or screens are the producers, professionals who painstakingly and while juggling hundreds of meetings begin to lay the framework for each new feature film. In Chile, they have been building bridges with their international peers, knowing how to get the most out of each industry event in which they participate, and strengthening the ties created throughout the calendar, wherein there’s a very particular week: the industry encounter at San Sebastián Film Festival. Each year, the occasion brings together all its attendees at the San Telmo Museum in the Basque city. However, as has been the case since March, in this instance, the encounters are only taking place virtually, where the more than 15 Chilean producers are working arduously.
This is how, in addition to being represented by 4 productions in competition at the festival and 3 projects selected in industry sections, our country is participating with an experienced delegation of producers and their best cinematic proposals, from thrillers, to dramas, animations, and even fantasy films.
From this potent group, today we’re highlighting four names, producers who are participating in San Sebastián thanks to support from the Ministry of Culture, the Arts and Development (MINCAP): Karina Jury of 17 Films, Sebastián Freund of Rizoma Producciones, Joaquin Echeverría of Brisa Films, and Pablo Berthelon of Carnada Films.
4 PRODUCTION HOUSES, 4 PROMISING PROJECTS
17 Films is a film, television, and theater production company dedicated mainly to the development, management, and production of international projects. Karina Jury is its producer, and at this moment she is principally seeking financing for the new film El profesor de religión.
Directed by Sebastián Muñoz, the winner of the Queer Lion Award at Venice in 2019 (for his first feature The Prince), this LGBTQ+ drama set in Rome will narrate, in 100 minutes, the story of Genesio, a religion professor at a marginal urban high school who is fired from his position over his sexual orientation. The film is currently in development and will be a big co-production between Chile, via 17 Films, and Italy, at the hand of Macaia Film, approaching the conflict of discrimination.
“Without a doubt, San Sebastián connects Latin America with Europe, and it is where in previous years we’ve had very good results, securing big co-productions. This is the third time that we’ve participated, and despite the format, which is virtual, we believe that regardless we will achieve our objectives, to get a Spanish co-producer,” comments Jury.
Meanwhile, Rizoma Producciones, dedicated to the creation, development, production, and commercialization of fiction content for film and television, at the hand of Sebastián Freund, is promoting its project Hierro, a film that will be directed by Alejandro Fernández Almendras (Much Ado About Nothing) and that will approach, from an original point of view, the current conflict in Araucanía in the South of Chile, surrounding the Mapuche people.
With a successful short film among its credentials (Austral Fever, Venice 2019), production house Brisa Films cleared its path to internationalization, ensuring that its projects be characterized by their commitment with the audience, generating content that proposes an aesthetically pleasing experience and invites reflection and discussion. Today, producer Joaquín Echeverría is working from London in the Basque audiovisual encounter, in search of financing for the non-fiction film by young director Thomas Woodroffe, entitled Bloques Erráticos.
Echeverría asserts, “We’re seeking alliances and the possibility to add an associate co-producer or sales agent that allow us to realize the documentary. On the other hand, we’re in search of alliances in the making of minority co-productions, for which we’ll put special emphasis on the Co-Production Forum. Lastly, we feel it’s important to see the projects that are in Works in Progress and have the possibility to see the official selection to understand what the industry is moving toward.”
Finally, Carnada Films, an associative talent and project platform with a catalogue of one fiction film, four feature-length documentaries, and three TV series, is represented by Pablo Berthelon and is promoting the film that will be directed by Berthelon himself, currently in the writing phase and in search of co-producers: drama El rojo de un atardecer. In 100 minutes, it will tell the story that took place after the disappearance of Carmen Bueno and Jorge Müller, a Chilean filmmaker couple and militants of MIR (Revolutionary Left Movement) who were kidnapped by Dirección de Inteligencia Nacional (DINA) agents during the Military Dictatorship.