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2 items from 2015

Iff Panama: Festival Audiences Embrace ‘Spanish Affair’

14 April 2015 11:26 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Panama – Alvaro Augustin, producer and CEO of Spain’s Telecinco Cinema, was delighted and even a little surprised at how strongly “Spanish Affair” (“Ocho Apellidos Vascos”) played at the opening night of the Panama Film Festival.

The film, which is the highest-grossing film of all time in Spain, had been totally embraced by the festival guests at the opening gala in the National Theater, and had enchanted both actress Geraldine Chaplin and Brazilian director Karim Ainouz. Chaplin went as far as to say that she felt her father, Charlie Chaplin, would have loved the film and talked of the parallels with the “Great Dictator,” in which Chaplin had to play a person he was not.

“I knew that the audience might miss as much as 50% of the jokes as they are so local to Spain and the language,” Augustin told Variety, “but it still seems to work with audiences outside of Spain. »

- Christopher Pickard

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Iff Panama: Potential B.O. Juggernaut ‘Spanish Affair 2’ Gears Up

9 April 2015 5:35 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The pieces are falling into place for the production of “Spanish Affair 2” (“Ocho Apellidos 2”), the sequel to the 2014 comedy which, distributed by Universal Pictures International in Spain, and opening March 14 last year, powered to an extraordinary €55.2 million ($59.6 million) in Spain, becoming the highest-grossing Spanish film of all time at hometurf wickets.

Doing so, it also underscored a business model which is revolutionizing the popularity of movies not only in Spain but in Latin America: the combination of a well-crafted film that touches a national nerve and has a huge marketing push from a big nationwide broadcaster, here TV network Mediaset España, which co-produced via powerful film arm Telecinco Cinema.

Other national film industries – in Argentina, for instance – have taken note. Backing from Televisa and Globo also explain, though only in part, the rise of local movies’ market shares in Mexico and Brazil respectively.

Underscoring the crowd-pleasing status of the original, »

- John Hopewell

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