The 17th Canary Islands International Film Market has selected eight in-the-works audiovisual projects from Spain, four from Latin America and four from the Canary Islands. Back for a 17th year and under the direction of Guillermo Ríos, CIIF Market has taken place in hybrid format between 28 and 30 April in Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

Its official base has been the Hotel Iberostar Heritage Grand Mencey, which has provided the setting for a series of professional networking events (both in-person and online) designed to attract production companies, distributors, television networks, sales agents and other film industry professionals (Secuoya Studios, Latido Films, Filmax, Scenic Rights, Atresmedia Cine, Avalon, MAFIZ (the Málaga Festival Industry Zone) and Portugal’s Ukbar Filmes, among others). The event aims to promote filmmaking in general but especially collaboration, through coproductions pitched at the European and international markets. It also hopes to foster synergies between the film and publishing industries, extending an invitation to Spanish literary fiction writers whose work may be suitable for adaptation for the large or small screen.

Several Pitching Sessions have been held, “Where the best projects are cooked”, to present the main industrial and creative aspects of the productions under development to potential recipients, analysts, producers, distributors, sales agents, television channels, consultants, film funds, festival programmers, etc. and there have been conferences and keynotes about about the current cinematographic and audiovisual.

The participants have been in the International Section: El rey lombriz, a drama by LaConda Producciones (Spain) in coproduction with Cámara Oscura (Ecuador), Siete Elefantes (Mexico) and Medusa Films (Colombia), to be directed by Sonia Escolano; Hercúlea, a thriller directed by Daniel Ortiz Entrambasaguas and produced by Danidog Films; La mala madre, a horror film by Alicia Albares, backed by Mordisco Films; Lo que hacemos en las sombras, a documentary by Spanish directing duo Sara Moralo and Lucía Hernández (Synopsis); Maine Coon, a dark comedy directed by Guillermo Polo and produced by Los Hermanos Polo and Japónica Films; No pasarán, a drama series in development at Kaboga; Torretta, United Mafia, a thriller from Álvaro Iglesias and Solworks Films; and Un vulgar y triste solitario, a creative non-fiction film to be directed by Efthymia Zymvragaki and produced by Gris Medio (Spain) and Thurn Films (Germany).

The Latin American productions in development have included: Eskaton, más fuertes que la muerte, a new feature-length project from Agnus Film (Paraguay), directed by Marcelo Torcida; La roca y el mar, a series by Carajito Films (Uruguay); Una puntada, una lágrima, an animated documentary by Carlos Castro and Isabel Macías, produced by Canal Cultura (Colombia), San Quirino Estudio (Argentina) and Fundación Ceiba (Colombia); and Vacío, a mew drama being developed by Esteban Insausti in association with Audiovisual Atelier (Argentina), RTV Comercial, the Cuban Institute of Music and Producciones Colibrí (Cuba).

Finally, the Focus Canarias section with Canarian audiovisual proyects: Déjame que te diga otra vez que te quiero, a comedy directed by José Víctor Fuentes and produced by Chukumi Studio and Los Emotions; El Fausto, a nail-biting miniseries by Roberto Chinet (Novilunio Music & Films and Reverso Films); Trans-Star, a dramedy from Bibiana Monje (Dunes Films); Pescadores del Desierto, a documentary by Ayoze O’Shanahan (Siroco Factory), winner of the 2020 Canary Islands Film Accelerator (under the auspices of the Canary Islands Audiovisual Cluster and cofinanced by PROEXCA, Canary Islands Film, the Island Council of Gran Canaria and the University of Las Palmas).

CIIF Market 2021 has also curated a selection of literary works, whose authors editors and agents have been invited to present the case for potential screen adaptation. Spanish participants have included Buckson (Grafito Editorial), a graphic novel by Víctor Araque and Rocío Estepa; Las guerras correctas (Autor Exprés SGAE), a novel by Gabriel Ochoa; and Violeta mara… mara… maravilla (LxL Editorial), a young-adult novel by Felicitas Rebaque. Meanwhile, the selected texts in the Focus Canarias section have been El corazón de los pájaros (Nectarina Editorial), a dramatic tale by Elsa López, and El despertar de la bruja de hielo (LxL Editorial) by Sara Maher.

“We are very happy with the great reception that this edition has had,” he says. Guillermo Rios, director of the CIIF Market. “Despite the restrictions and difficulties in the current global pandemic situation, we have been able to celebrate a hybrid edition, doubling efforts with the aim of promoting the co-production of film and television projects for the European and international market, establishing an important network of useful contacts and tools for the selected projects, and facilitating access and knowledge about the different financing channels and the search for new investors”.

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