Spain's Galicia sets up film fund

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LA CORUNA, Spain -- Spain's northwestern region Galicia has set up a 3 million euro ($4.4 million) fund that mixes public and private monies to co-produce market-friendly films, regional authorities said.

"We must focus on strategies that help with marketing, promotion and distribution of Galician film," Galician communication secretary Fernando Salgado Garcia said Friday. "The fund will focus on helping produce copies for commercial films."

The announcement came during the "Galicia: Terra de Cine" forum, created by the Galician authorities to support the region's film and television projects.

The fund, which joins money from the regional government's budget via the finance department and the Galician Audiovisual Consortium with local bank Caixa Galicia, is the first that sees the public and private sectors join forces for the film industry in general -- rather than a specific company or initiative.

Galicia invested about 8 million euros ($11.7 million) in its local film production sector last year and expects to repeat the same figure this year. The additional 3 million euros will go toward helping the logistics of distribution.

"Keeping in mind the present financial crisis, this (the fund) creates the possibility of a new tool for films," said Consortium manager Ignacio Varela.
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