As it is currently the Law of the Cinema, a feature film must be exploited in the halls before getting to other display windows, and to do so, you must return any aid or grant that has been received. In addition, a film that is not at least one week in billboard shall not be entitled to choose to a Goya award, a model designed to protect all sectors of the industry, from production to distribution and exhibition. However, the crisis of the Covid-19 that affects virtually the entire world has not only forced to stop more than 300 filming in Spain, also the total closure of the cinema, and, therefore, that we have to rethink exceptional measures for the duration of the alarm state.
Looking for solutions to ease the economic impact of the pandemic in the culture, the State Association of Cinema is negotiating with the ICAA, Institute of Cinematography and Audiovisual Arts, distributors to bring their films directly to streaming platforms without penalty, according to reports The Country. It would be a temporary permission and so raises José Nevado, director general of the association, that “not cost the State money, but yes, it would help us to reduce the impact that you are having the coronavirus on our business.”said Five Days.
This proposal would not force any distributor to skip the exhibit halls, it would be something voluntary, but it would help to unclog the release schedule that now has more than 50 movies without a release date and forced to be released before the end of the year: “we must find a way out that does not involve delays and allow the works to be seen and to recover the investment”points Snowy.
The return to normality will be a long process
Although right now and with everything changing every week confinement total is only fixed until the 26th of April, the reinstatement of the business and clientele to normal will be gradual, and the industry does not expect that the rooms will reopen with normal or fully booked from one day to another, “We believe that when the end of the confinement, there will be a period of adaptation. We do not believe that people go to recover their normal life strike and return to go to the cinema quickly”. Thus, for Nevado, the market recovery we expect a long process in which you need to re-adjust to slow down the losses that are estimated at more than 20 million euros per day.
To change from one model to another is not so easy and needs the approval of the ICAA, which is currently in contact with the different fractions of the industry in order to know their points of view. Anyway, even though producers, distributors and cinemas are set to agree to temporarily modify the display windows, will have to see what they say streaming platforms: “supposed to have that start to run financial obligations with respect to the producers before time”. This new system has already been implemented in China and in Spain some distributors have come to private agreements to release their films first on the Internet. Avalon, for example, premiered ‘Matthias & Maxime’ by Xavier Dolan on Netflix for 48 hours before you can get to the big screen. “The film opens a path. Dolan in all cities. In all the houses”, was the distributor. For its part, A Contracorriente Films has created its virtual room filmwhere ‘Vivarium’, ‘The joy of small things’, ‘The teachers of Saint-Denis’ and ‘The passion in art’ can be viewed online. And since the thrones are going to be this year locked away, Bosco Films has wanted to bring the holy week in the houses putting ‘pilgrim’s progress’ directly to your rent online through your web page.