Country Focus: Spain
A deep rift created within producers’ federation FAPAE
by Sergio Ríos Pérez
- The Spanish film industry’s problems just keep on multiplying. In addition to the difficulties caused by piracy, the economic crisis, the changing model of film consumption and the lack of public support, a deep internal rift has now been created within one of the sector’s main associations – producers’ federation FAPAE.
The biggest group out of all those that made up FAPAE, the Madrilenian Audiovisual Association (AMA), announced last Friday that it is leaving the federation following the decision made during its extraordinary general meeting the day before. The withdrawal, which will be effective starting from August, is due to the fact that it lacks “a global operating plan, both on a budgetary and a structural level”.
It should be kept in mind that up until now, FAPAE has established itself as one of the main defenders of the whole Spanish film industry, both in terms of negotiations with the government, television channels and other sectors with shared interests, and in terms of the pursuit of a closer relationship with the public. Seven months ago, Catalan producer Ramón Colom was elected president, replacing Pedro Pérez, and he embarked upon a renewal plan (although for some, this was a clear-out plan) for the federation that has generated a great deal of controversy.
Barely ten days ago, Eduardo Campoy, a producer and the former president of FAPAE, sent a letter to Colom in which he blamed him, among other things, for the fact that “the negotiations on the tax relief have ended up being an absolute disaster for Spanish cinema”, as has the situation with the television channels, which “could not get any worse”.
Ramón Colom’s presidency has come under a lot of scrutiny owing to accusations of him being unable (because of idleness, according to his detractors) to counteract those measures undertaken by the government that are detrimental to the film industry. Under these circumstances, FAPAE’s next board meeting, scheduled for 10 September, promises to be quite stormy.