"The current situation is a disgrace"
by Antonio Rodríguez
- Co-director of the independent company Versus Entertainment, Alejandro Miranda backs the original and talented director Nacho Vigalondo despite the difficult climate for small companies
Alejandro Miranda, of the small distribution company Versus Entertainment, commented: "We prefer to release fewer films but good ones. In recent years, we’ve released films such as Ryan Johnson’s Brick and Rodrigo Garcia’s Nine Lives. We currently have a contract with MGM in the US to release five films, the latest of which was Lars and the Real Girl. We will also launch Park Chang Wook’s I’m a Cyborg, But That’s OK and Lee Chang-dong’s Secret Sunshine, the latest prize winner at the Barcelona Asian Film Festival. These are quality auteur films that are elegant and demanding". Now the company is preparing to release the eagerly awaited Spanish titleTimecrimes [+see also:
interview: Alejandro Miranda
interview: Nacho Vigalondo
Cineuropa: You could say the film’s career has been somewhat unusual, as it enjoyed greater success at film festivals outside Spain than at home.
Alejandro Miranda: Yes, you could certainly say it’s been strange, but unfortunately these things happen quite often in Spain. In general, Spanish talent is more appreciated abroad than at home. My partner Adrián Guerra – head of production at Versus – had a similar experience with Luiso Berdejo. After getting a project off the ground, the director ended up making a film in the US, whereas in Spain we hardly managed to get people to notice us. Of course, now everybody wants to work with him.
Releasing a film in Spain is such a complicated process that the release date had to be postponed several times. Why is this?
For a small distribution company like Versus Entertainment it’s very complicated. There are an excessive number of releases every week and exhibitors have many obligations towards larger companies. This makes it difficult to find a slot and release the film on the right date.
Have any Spanish broadcasters bought television rights to the film?
We haven’t closed off that possibility; we’ll start working with the television companies once we’ve released the film in theatres. At the moment, we’re focusing on the theatrical and DVD release. For the DVD, we’d like to do a special edition for all the Nacho Vigalondo fans.
On how many screens is the film being released domestically and what kind of audience is the film aimed at?
We’re releasing the film on a small print run of around 60. The film is aimed at all enthusiasts of good cinema, the fantasy genre and fans of Nacho, and there are lots of them!
How do you see the future of film? Are film distribution and marketing methods going to change, as many people predict?
An answer to that question would take up several pages. To summarise, I’ll say that the current situation is a disgrace; illegal downloads are destroying the film industry. We can’t tolerate 210 million films being illegally downloaded in our country in just one year. It’s therefore obvious that distribution methods will change from how they are nowadays, but it’s a pity that this won’t be a natural market development.