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INDUSTRY France/Spain

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Manuel Martín Cuenca leads the pack for Small is Biútiful

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- French producers, distributors and sales agents have a date in Paris tomorrow to discover seven Spanish projects in search of partners

Manuel Martín Cuenca leads the pack for Small is Biútiful
Director Manuel Martín Cuenca

Organised as part of "Dífferent 9! L'autre cinéma espagnol" by Espagnolas en París and the Ile-de-France Film Commission, in partnership with the Cannes Film Market, Small is Biútiful will tomorrow gather together around 30 French companies (producers, distributors and international sales agents, such as Urban DistributionLa Belle CompanyLes Films du WorsoLuxboxBac FilmsHouse on FireManny Films and Noodles Productions) in the French capital. They will be presented with a selection of seven independent Spanish feature-film projects in search of French partners, each with a maximum budget of €2 million. This pitching and interview session has already proven its worth in terms of quality and effectiveness with titles such as Oliver Laxe’s Mimosas [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Oliver Laxe
film profile
]
 (the winner of the recent Grand Prix in the Cannes Critics’ Week) and Carlos Vermut’s Magical Girl [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Carlos Vermut
film profile
]
 (the big winner at San Sebastián in 2014), both of which were presented at Small is Biútiful in 2012.

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Standing out among the projects at this edition is Brando by Manuel Martín Cuenca, which will be the fifth feature by the director, whose last opus, Cannibal [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Manuel Martín Cuenca
film profile
]
 (selected at Small is Biútiful in 2011), was unveiled at Toronto in 2013 before going on to win the Best Cinematography Award at San Sebastián and notch up four nominations for the 2014 Goya Awards. The filmmaker has penned his new screenplay with his regular writing partner Alejandro Hernandez and is staging the production with his own company, La Loma BlancaBrando is a road movie set in the United States; the main character is David, a Spanish actor whose lack of success has driven him to try his luck in New York, accompanied by his partner, Lucía. But Lucía decides to leave again and bids farewell to him at the airport with the words, "You don’t even want a dog!" hanging in the air. And so David is left on his own, and seeing as he doesn’t really want his romance to come to an end on such a sad note, he decides to set out on a voyage to find the dog in question... Antonio de la Torre (nominated for the Goya Award for Best Actor four times since 2007, for The Last Circus [+see also:
trailer
film focus
interview: Álex de la Iglesia
film profile
]
CanibalUnit 7 [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
 and Gordos [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Daniel Sánchez Arévalo
Interview with Daniel Sánchez-Arévalo,…
film profile
]
, and four times for the Goya Award for Best Supporting Role, for Marshland [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Alberto Rodríguez
film profile
]
Invasor [+see also:
trailer
festival scope
film profile
]
La gran familia española [+see also:
trailer
making of
film profile
]
 and DarkBlueAlmostBlack [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, which snagged him the trophy) has been approached to star in the movie. 

The 2016 selection of Small is Biútiful also includes Punto Nemo by José Skaf (who rose to fame with Vulcania [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
 and is presenting a new project produced by Aquí y Allí Films, the screenplay for which follows a crisis-riddled couple crossing northern Spain, with three unsettling characters on their tail), Baby by Juanma Bajo Ulloa (a Frágil Zinema production with a plot revolving around a young drug addict who sells his newborn baby to dealers and then tries to get him back) and Mara 13 Mara 18 by Cristina Andreu (produced by Primero Izquierdas – it follows the misadventures of two Guatemalan orphans whom life has prized apart and who are reunited 20 years later, after one of them has become a Mara gang leader).

Also of note are Not the End by César and José Esteban Alenda (a feature debut being staged by Producciones Transatlánticas, which tells the story of a trip through time to relive the day of a romantic encounter and thus change the future), Carmen y Lola by Arantxa Echevarría (a Tvtec Servicios audiovisuales production focusing on a love story between two young Gypsy girls) and the documentary project Venís desde lejos by Amal Ramsis (Morgana Producciones, portraying the incredible lives of a Palestinian family: the father came to Spain to fight against Franco in 1936, and the family was then torn apart by several turbulent events that defined the last century).

(Translated from French)

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