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· “Las mil vidas” (Meridional Producciones), a project by Marina Seresesky, receives the CIIF Market Santa Cruz de Tenerife 2019 Award

· The Canary Islands Film Award from Focus Canarias has gone to “Vampire Holocaust” (El Hombre Invisible Films), by Vasni Ramos

· 500 meetings have been held in the business and networking area set up for the pitching of audiovisual projects and selected literary works

The XVI edition of the Canary Islands International Film Market ends with great success. An edition marked by the growing interest that it has aroused, as demonstrated by the more than 80 projects received to participate in this year in the market, obtaining record registrations since the CIIF Market is held in the capital of Tenerife.

The incorporation of Canarian literary works likely to be adapted for film or television has also generated good sensations, an initiative enthusiastically received by the receiving companies present.

Almost twenty national and international film and television projects were selected to participate in search of financing and co-production. Likewise, authors or editors of six Canarian literary works have presented their books to the film and audiovisual industry.

Santa Cruz de Tenerife has become a meeting point from October 8 to 12 between cinema and literature, between creation and production, between Canarian, national and international talent and business management, bringing together more than a hundred professionals from the sector (filmmakers, scriptwriters, producers, distributors, sales agents, television channels, etc.), as well as local authors and publishers and radio and television news media, written and specialized press.

Intense work schedule at CIIF Market 2019

Around 500 meetings have been held in the business and networking area set up at the Hotel Iberostar Grand Mencey for the pitching of the projects and literary works in attendance, with individual public presentations to potential investors, sales agents and television channels to continue developing the project, explore new ways of financing and promoting co-productions.

more than 20 receivers, among which are companies such as Bendita Film Sales, Canary Islands Film, Clúster audiovisual de Canarias, Danidog Films, Filmarket Hub, El Viaje Films, Filmax, Frida Films, Imval Producciones, Latido Films, Macaronesia Films, Music Library & SFX, Scenic Rights, Tarkemoto, Tenerife Film Commission, Televisión Pública de Canarias (RTVC), Volcano Films and Zeta Studios.

Remotely, Atresmedia Cine and Movistar for Latin America have received the selected film and television series projects, respectively.

All of them have contributed their point of view, advising and suggesting on the development of the works, with the aim of enriching them and optimizing their production possibilities and they have positively valued their quality.

For their part, the designers in general have described their experience in the market as satisfactory, finding the diversity of the receiving companies very constructive, highlighting their involvement and professionalism, and have stated that they come away with many conclusions and with a more global vision of their construction site.

Parallel activities

During CIIF Market 2019, interesting activities for the training and professionalization of the sector were scheduled, which were attended, in addition to the participants, by institutions, organizations, film and audiovisual students from the islands, local writers and cultural associations, with practically full capacity. in the room during the days of the conference.

On Wednesday, October 9, the Workshop “Impact of literary works on new series and feature film productions” took place, led by Sydney Borjas, general director of the Scenic Right agency and Gervasio Iglesias, producer of Zeta Studios .

The session addressed the change in the production model imposed by new platforms such as Netflix, Amazon or HBO, and pending the landing of Apple, Disney, Warner, among others, which has come together in the so-called global audiences and the reinvention in content consumption, where the figure of the screenwriter has gained strength, turned into showrunner , creatives who are involved in the technical part.

Borjas stressed the value of a good story and stated that “today it is no longer so important to have the best facilities and advanced technical equipment, the most important thing is great stories with engaging characters, because currently you can reach different audiences of everyone”.

The director of Scenic Rights pointed out the relevance of local stories that can become universal, called glocal and the impact on viewers of literary sagas, indicating that a recent study has published that films based on literary works get almost 60% more box office than those based on an original script.

For Gervasio Iglesias, “today it is more complicated to establish the rules of the game due to the new composition of the market, increasingly complex and rich and more competitive due to globalization”.

Continuing with what was exposed by Sidney Borjas, the producer of Zeta Studios communicated that “the creators are now more visible in this whole process. The key to change is in the different phases of a product. Before there were three clear stages: development, production and finally distribution and exhibition. However, now development prevails and where it is going to be placed, where it is going to be seen, and this already brings to production, that is, the essential is in the development to try to offer something unique”, he concluded.

On Thursday the 10th, the Masterclass “I have a script and now what do I do?” was held, given by Gemma Pascual, Director of Development at Filmax , who provided the keys to make yourself known and how to successfully present a project.

Main elements to make a good oral and written pitch, previous texts that must be prepared, budget, financing plan, business market research, knowledge of the industry and its professionals, all this is what Gemma Pascual exposed extensively in her class masterly.

Likewise, he spoke of other opportunities to present a script, participation in laboratories and residencies, awards, contests, festivals, etc., and confirmed that the basic rule by which a pitch must always be governed is that of the three “Cs”: clarity , conciseness and coherence. In the speech, one must go from the general to the specific”, he pointed out.


On the other hand, Javier Hidalgo, director of PROEXCA and Natacha Mora, coordinator of the Audiovisual Department of Canarias Cultura en Red / Canary Islands Film , made a presentation that same day on tax incentives in the Canary Islands, production and institutional support.

The initiatives carried out by the Government of the Canary Islands in audiovisual matters were summarized, such as production subsidies, training plans, the promotion of the Canary Islands industry, assistance to markets, professional advice and support for events.

CIIF Market Awards 2019

As the culmination of the XVI edition of CIIF Market, on Saturday, October 11, the Awards Ceremony was held at the Strasse Park in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, with the journalist Pilar Rumeu again as master of ceremonies.

The following projects were awarded for their promotion abroad :

Music Library & SFX Award , consisting of a free flat rate for the synchronized production of music in the content of the project: (The award was given by Arturo Olea García, director of business development and Peter Stephens, project coordinator of Music Library & SFX )

“Poor Devil”, by director Guillermo Polo. An original script by David Pascual and Guillermo Polo. Produced by Los Hermanos Polo and Japonica Films. Black comedy about the strange relationship between two brothers and a curious road trip to find their identity.

Macaronesia Films Award , which includes financial and legal advisory services regarding tax incentives in the Canary Islands: (The award was presented by Jaime Romero, CEO of Macaronesia Films)

“Time of Silence”, by the director Fernando González Gómez, and the creator Vasileios Papatheocaris. Produced by José Luis Rancaño (La Dalia Films). Fiction series project in the key of a futuristic thriller about a medical technology program that extends human life.

Filmarket Hub Award , for which you will have a free one-year subscription to the online platform, which will facilitate access to the most important companies and financing funds: (Delivered by Bernardo Gómez, co-founder of Filmarket Hub)

“La Indiana”, by the author Jorge Hernández Pérez, a screenwriter who has worked for Mediapro, Warner Bros, Netflix and Telecinco. Fiction series project set on the island of La Palma at the end of the 19th century, in which two brothers have just inherited the family tobacco company.

Canary Islands Film Award for the best Focus Canarias project, rewarded with a travel grant for a sectoral market and international projection: (The award was given by Sábita Jagtani, Senior Technician – ZEC Consortium – Special Canary Zone)

“Vampire Holocaust (Voodoo Apocalypse 2)”, by director Vasni J. Ramos, with a script by José J. Ramallo, Sergio G. Ramos and Vasni J. Ramos. Produced by The Invisible Man Films. Fantastic detective comedy, in which some seasoned detectives must save the planet from a supernatural threat.

CIIF Market Santa Cruz De Tenerife 2019 Award for the project with the greatest international projection, consisting of an amount of 1,200 euros to attend an international market of your choice. (He gave the prize Jose Sabate. 5th Deputy Mayor and Minister of Finance, Human Resources and Patrimony of the Santa Cruz de Tenerife Town Hall).

Three were the finalists for the main prize of CIIF Market 2019:

· “El Preacher”, by director and screenwriter Facundo Escudero Salinas and produced by Nicolás Münzel, from Pennsylvania Films. (Argentina), suspense drama about a hustler who becomes a religious leader.

· “Las Mil Vidas”, by Argentine director and screenwriter Marina Seresesky, produced by Álvaro Lavín, from Meridional Producciones. (Spain). Thriller about a mother searching for her missing son years ago, who decides to go to Latin America convinced that she will find answers there, beginning a journey that will lead her to find the painful truth about what really happened.

· “Poor Devil”, by Guillermo Polo, produced by Los Hermanos Polo and Japónica Films. (Spain).

The CIIF MARKET SANTA CRUZ DE TENERIFE 2019 AWARD finally went to: “ LAS MIL VIDAS”, by Marina Seresesky (Meridional Productions).

Seresesky has directed “La puerta abierta”, a film that received two Goya Award nominations in 2013; the documentary “Madres”, which was Biznaga de Plata at the 14th Malaga Festival, and the short films “El cortejo” (8more than 120 awards at festivals) and “La Boda”, also nominated for the Goya Awards. In this 2019 he has released the feature film “Lo nunca visto”.

Lastly, during the Awards ceremony, a Special Mention was announced for the Canarian literary work “En la línea azul”, by the author Luis García Rebollo, for its possibilities of adaptation to film and/or television and its impact on the market. It is a historical novel with a proposal to make an unprecedented journey through science, history, intrigue and the sea.

Balance of the director of CIIF Market

At the closing of CIIF Market, its director, Guillermo Ríos, made balance of this edition, stating that “This year has been a real success due to the volume and quality of the projects presented, as well as by the recipients who have seen an opportunity in the Canary Islands, not only because of the tax benefits it offers, but also because of the professionalism and projection of the Canarian producers, and the good moment in general that the industry is experiencing. It is undeniable that every year we are growing, so we must not lower our guard. It is our duty to continue improving and offering to discover new stories, new creations and that we continue to be an important tool for the development and promotion of our sector”.

For this reason, CIIF Market is already beginning to organize its XVII edition, working on various lines to expand its contents, with the aim of becoming a reference platform for the development of works and international projection of new talents within the cinematographic and audiovisual scene.