Spanish films turn off most Spaniards

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Most Spaniards prefer U.S. films to Spanish ones, saying movies made in the home country of Oscar-winning director Pedro Almodovar are boring, according to a survey released Tuesday.

Nearly 59% of Spaniards think homegrown film productions are mediocre or uninteresting, and nearly 70% said they would like to be consulted about subsidies the film industry receives, the Sigma Dos poll said.

Films from the United States draw two thirds of the audience in Spanish theaters, although a law to be passed later this year plans to keep a screen quota obliging cinemas to show one European film for every three from outside the EU.

"In Spain, (filmmakers) concentrate on quality for quality's sake," Professor Emilio Carlos Garcia of Madrid's Complutense University told reporters, presenting the survey.

He called for the Culture Ministry to consult with the public about what they wanted from the new cinema law.

Spain's biggest grossing Spanish-speaking film last year was "Alatriste," a swashbuckling extravaganza co-produced by Telecinco. It had the fourth-biggest box office take after three U.S. features -- "Pirates of the Caribbean," "The Da Vinci Code" and "Ice Age II."

The biggest fans of homegrown cinema were in the lowest income bracket, with lower educational qualifications, Garcia said.
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