Producer on the Move 2008 - Spain
by Valerio Caruso
Cineuropa: What is your background and how did you become a producer?
Manuel Cristobal: I left my law studies as I felt I wanted to work with films. I was trained as a director but I found that what I felt passionate about is producing. It is a very creative role, in ways I couldn’t imagine, very collaborative. And at the end is bringing to life projects you care for. In a certain way you are between the creative world and the real world and it is truly fascinating.
How are the production conditions in Spain?
We have to evolve with our audience, make fewer films, bigger or smaller, but less and above all different from each other. Make commercial comedies and author films. I think that if in Europe and/or Spain we concentrate only in small author films we would make of European cinema a cultural ghetto. Don’t count on me for that! I think one of the best production companies in Europe is Working Title.
What is the your company’s production philosophy?
Our slate is very different, from family films to wacky comedy animation and dramas. For example. we have bought the rights to Fish of Bitterness”, an acclaimed novel by Fernando Aramburu that I hope it will be a powerful drama. Perro Verde Films is a place for different projects, in Spanish a green dog (“perro verde”) is something weird and different so we have to live up to the name!
How do you choose projects? What qualities must a project have to catch your attention?
It is very passion-driven but I take into consideration the resources and markets we can reach. We make content, entertainment, sometimes in the form of a movie, sometimes of a series. It has to be something risky and different. The right distribution and partners are key and also the right talent no matter its origin, blood or country.
Do you have international prospects involving co-producing with other European countries?
I already have co-produced and the partner depends on the project and if it makes sense, in that the co-production doesn’t kill the soul of the project.
With which countries do you co-produce the most?
I have no preference for a country but it should be a project that is somewhat related to Spain or could work in my market. Sometimes a co production is not necessarily the answer.
How do you feel about being selected as a Producer on the Move 2008?
I am delighted and honored to represent my country. I hope that there will be a “before” and an “after” Producers on the Move!
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