By Ed Meza
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Madrid-based Latido Films is partnering with the organizers of the new genre-focused Fantastic Pavilion at the Cannes Film Festival’s Marché du Film on a new award that will offer international distribution to selected Spanish-language Iberoamerican films.

The prize will also provide theatrical release in Latin America for winning titles.

News of the prize comes as plans for the Fantastic Pavilion, one of the major innovation of this year’s Cannes Film Market, are beginning g to emerge, based on a undeniable market reality: Elevated genre films and thrillers, if they are shaped by an auteurist vision, are proving to be among the surest sellers on the international market and genre is embraced by a new generation of young filmmakers who are often creating artistically ambitious films of substance, sometimes dealing with urgent gender and social issues.

Conceived by Pablo Guisa Koestinger, Grupo Mórbido CEO, Bernardo Bergeret, Ventana Sur co-director, and Daniel de la Vega, co-ordinator of Ventana Sur’s Maquinitas video game forum, the Fantastic Pavilion promises a significant booth and exhibition space at the Cannes market for genre films that is expected to boost the fantastic pic sector.

Latido Films will grant a monetary sum and international sales representation to the best work in progress or finished film chosen from submitted titles. Registration is open and interested parties may submit projects via the Fantastic Pavilion webpage. The finalist titles will be announced during the Marché du Film, with the winner presented at the Fantastic Pavilion.

Describing the Fantastic Pavilion as “a brilliant idea,” Latido CEO Antonio Saura said, “I’ve had a passion for science fiction, fantasy and horror films since my childhood and we have seen with enthusiasm the appearance of fabulous titles within these genres coming from Ibero-America lately, so we immediately joined forces deciding to support the organizers.”

Guisa Koestinger, who also serves as the Fantastic Pavilion’s executive director, added that the Fantastic Latido award added to “a number of efforts concentrated at the Pavilion to ramp up the trade of genre films from all over the world. We’re very happy to have Latido on board with the prize, which will boost the exposure of horror films from a region I have close to my heart.”

Latido, a leading international sales company with a strong line in Spanish-language titles, made a splash in the fantastic world with “The Platform,” by Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia, which it picked up at the Málaga Festival’s Work in Progress, giving it a Latido Films Award.

A buzz title from the beginning of the Toronto Film Festival, it won the audience award at its Midnight Madness section, reached the top spot at the Korean box office and, picked up by Netflix off Toronto, rates as the third most watched non-English movie ever on Netflix.

Other Latido titles include Gustavo Hernandez’s “Virus-32,” sold to Shudder along with other multiple territories for theatrical release, and Rocio Mesa’s magical-realist monster film “Tobacco Burns,” set to screen at the forthcoming SXSW.

Latido is will also be handling Rubin Stein’s suspense thriller “Tin & Tina” and the dystopian sci-fi pic “Artificial Justice,” by Simón Casal, both of which are currently in the works.


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