Malaga Industry Awards: ‘Of Books and Women,’ ‘Nothing,’ ‘SICA’

The Málaga Festival Industry Zone (MAFIZ) wrapped Thursday, March 25 with a slew of awards parceled out to productions from across Spain and Latin America.

Several projects by women filmmakers dominated the event, which kicked off on March 21.

Spanish documentarian Carla Subirana’s fiction feature debut, “Sica” made off with three private-sector plaudits, including the Aracne post-production cash prize of €20,000 ($22,000) as well as the REC and Abycine awards, comprising participation in their respective industry labs .

Backed by Alba Sotorra’s Cinema Productions, Galician firm Miramira, Spanish pubcaster TVE and Catalonia’s TVC, the coming-of-age drama turns on 13-year-old Sica who waits by the Costa da Morte, a Galician fishing shoreline, for the sea to give up the body of her fisherman father who perished at sea.

Other Work in Progress (WIP) awards went to documentary “Of Books and Women,” by María Elorza of Spain and “Nothing” (a working title) by Brazil’s Adriana Guimaraes.

“Of Books and Women” offers a glimpse of various women and their relationships to books, one keeps a Franciscan library in a junk room, the other nearly breaks her finger on her bookshop shelves. Against fire, water, moths, dust, ignorance and fanaticism, an anonymous army of women take care of the books. It is an intimate resistance, no epic events, no revolution, no weapons,” the synopsis runs.

Brazilian feature film “Nothing” centers on artist, Ana, who is setting up an exhibition of her works when she is called back to the farm where she grew up. Here, her sister of her Tereza has been struck by a mysterious ailment that has altered her consciousness of her, prompting Ana to question her own memories of her.

Spain’s Andrea Bagney and Colombia’s Steven Morales snagged two private-sector prizes each with their respective works, “Ramona” and “Salt Water.”

“Ramona” is Bagney’s feature debut, produced by Tortilla Films, and currently in post. The drama turns on the titular Ramona and her boyfriend of her Nico who, after years living in London, return to Madrid where she hopes to embark on an acting career. Against her better judgment of her, she becomes infatuated with an older man who turns out to be the director of the film she’s auditioning for.

Produced by Esuna Casa Audiovisual, Colombian drama “Salt Water” is also the debut feature of Morales Pineda. The drama won a development grant from France’s CNC. In addition, it was a winning project of the 14th EIP – FICCI 59, and selected for the TFL-Script Development (Italy, 2019) and Cine Qua Non Lab (Mexico, 2020), and is now in post-production.

In “Salt Water,” 33-year-old Jacobo reconnects with his old friend Jose Luis, a Catholic priest, who is about to be expelled from the church following accusations of child molestation against him. Jacobo has to face his conflicted feelings about his older friend, whom he both desires and resents.

Among the projects seeking co-production partners in the Málaga Festival Fund & Co-Production event (MAFF), key private sector awards were spread out among the contenders.

Mexican Jose Pablo Escamilla’s “Godspeed Satan” won the ECAM award, comprising participation in an incubator program. Escamilla, whose debut feature “Mostro” snagged the independent critics award at the 74th Locarno festival, returns with a drama about a boy from a wealthy family who discovers that his father has a second family on the outskirts of the city. He connects with his half-brother of him but, despite a growing bond between them, their respective backgrounds have sealed their respective fates.

Yashira Jordán and her feature “Diamond” won the Sanfic award which gives her the opportunity to participate in the Chilean film festival’s production workshops. Produced by Alvaro Olmos Torrico, the Bolivian-set drama turns on rebellious teen singer Petra who melds her indigenous language of Quechua with hip hop sub-genre Trap, as she refuses to conform to the traditions of her community.

The Cinema 226 award, consisting of guidance on the script, funding, casting as well as the editing of a teaser, went to Edgar Noé Sajcabún’s “Mars at Nightfall,” a Guatemalan-Panamanian co-production about a Maya Kaqchikel boy who is desperately trying to prevent his father from migrating, and Javier Tolentino’s documentary “Red Sea,” a poetic and transatlantic journey from Catalonia to across the Atlantic through the lyrics of Catalan singer Marina Rossell.

2022 MALAGA WORK IN PROGRESS AWARDS

Malaga Festival WIP Spain

“Of Books and Women,” (Maria Elorza, Spain)

Malaga Festival – WIP Iberoamerica

“Nothing,” (Adriana Guimaraes, Brazil)

Arachne Award- Post-production

“Sica,” (Carla Subirana, Spain)

Yagan Films Award – Sound Post Production

“Salt Water,” (Steven Morales Pineda, Colombia)

Damita Award – Domestic Distribution

“Salt Water,” (Steven Morales Pineda, Colombia)

Abycine Award

“Sica,” (Carla Subirana, Spain)

Film and TV Award

“Ramona,” (Andrea Bagney, Spain)

FIDBA Award

“Of Books and Women,” (Maria Elorza, Spain)

REC Festival Award

“Sica,” (Carla Subirana, Spain)

SANFIC Award

“Land of our Mothers,” (Liv Lobato, Spain)

Latin Cinema Award

“Nothing,” (Adriano Guimaraes, Brazil)

Music Library – WIP

“Ramona,” (Andrea Bagney, Spain)

“The Sharp Scissors,” (David Marcial Valverdi, Argentina)

MAAF AWARDS (Malaga Festival Fund & Co-production)

Bolivia LAB

“Great Art Will be Destroyed,” (Fernando Fonseca Espinoza, Costa Rica, Colombia)

Cinema 226

“Mars at Nightfall,” (Edgar Noé Sajcabún)

“Red Sea,” (Javier Tolentino, Spain)

DOK Leipzig Co-Pro Market Accelerator

“Space is a Monstrous Animal,” (Natalia Solórzano Vasquez, Costa Rica)

ECAM Award

“Godspeed Satan,” (Jose Pablo Escamilla)

SANFIC

“Diamond,” (Yashira Jordan, Bolivia, Argentina)

Music Library

“Juliette & Camille,” (Paloma Zapata, Spain, Peru)

“Kaye,” (Juan Cáceres, Chile, France)

“Antonia,” (Toñi Martín Zorrilla, Spain)

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