Mario Fiorito • Distributor
by Gabriele Barcaro
Founded in late 2007, and headed by Mario Fiorito, today Bolero Film is the most active young company working in Italian distribution, and among the most focused on Italian and European independent films.
Cineuropa: What led to you to create a new distribution company?
Mario Florito: Bolero came about as an initiative by a group of friends and professionals working in the industry, with the initial goal of offering a “service” to those films we felt had commercial potential but were unable to find an outlet on the market. Since we had several cinemas, both in Rome and elsewhere in Italy, we could guarantee their release. The turning point came with the first film we acquired, The Visitor. It exceeded all our expectations, and led to more continuous, important acquisitions. We are now present at the top markets and festivals, including Berlin, Sundance, Cannes and Venice.
What elements influenced the definition of your line-up?
We want quality product that is first and foremost compatible with our cinemas, and also has some kind of commercial appeal. We have a network of distributors and local agents that allows for widespread penetration across the territory, even with “niche” films, or in any case those not exactly for multiplexes. Of course, there are exceptions, such as Cell 211 [+see also:
interview: Daniel Monzón
film profile], which we’re releasing on April 16 and which is in great demand by multiplexes. Its great critical acclaim and the huge success it had it Spain – at the Goyas it destroyed rivals such as Amenabar and Almodovar – have created a lot of buzz.
Do you have a stronger release planned for the film? What marketing strategies do you use?
The film is coming out on a minimum 130 prints, but we’re already thinking of releasing it on 150, given the number of requests we’ve had from exhibitors. That’s the same number on which we launched Let the Right One In [+see also:
interview: John Nordling
interview: Tomas Alfredson
film profile]. As for marketing and promotion, we have a young team and try to use other, non-traditional methods, working a lot on Internet sites and social networks. Trailers are very important for us, and for Cell 211 we made approximately 900, pairing them up with important films such as Roman Polanski’s The Ghost Writer [+see also:
On average, how much do you invest in a film’s release?
For Cell 211 approximately €700,000, but in any case never less than €200,000. It’s impossible to promote a film properly for less than that.
One of the characteristics of the Italian market is the difficulty in releasing domestic product…
That’s true, there’s a kind of funnel in Italy. If you ignore the little financing it doles out indiscriminately, the state has never intervened in exhibition. There’s no lack of public investment and financing in production (be it from the Ministry of Culture, RAI or local film commissions), but at the moment of a film’s theatrical release, there’s a bottleneck. We have an agreement with RAI Cinema, to distribute films they co-produce with other companies, that otherwise wouldn’t make it to theatres. Which is what we did with Valerio Mieli’s Ten Winters [+see also:
interview: Michele Riondino - actor
interview: Valerio Mieli
film profile], Jacques Rivette’s 36 Vues du Pic Saint Loup [+see also:
film profile], Alessandro di Robilant’s Marpiccolo [+see also:
film profile] and, coming soon, Scontro di Civiltà per un Ascensore a Piazza Vittorio [+see also:
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