the world digest


Spanish hat trick

MADRID — Columbia Films Production Spain is teaming with Spanish production houses Morena Films and Estudios Picasso to co-produce a soccer-based comedy starring Guillermo Toledo and Javier Gutierrez. The film, Sony's third local Spanish production, will be directed by Alvaro Fernandez Armero. Sony Pictures Releasing International will release the film in Spain and handle worldwide distribution. The film follows a Spanish soccer referee whose reputation is in jeopardy as a result of a series of controversial decisions.

The right tone

MEXICO CITY — Televisa has inked a content deal with Warner Music International under which it will distribute mastertones of Warner Music artists via Esmas Movil, the Mexican media giant's mobile phone service. Esmas Movil clients in Mexico will be able to download mastertones, an actual song sample as opposed to a synthesized version, and screensavers of such Warner Music talent as Mexican pop group Mana, Luis Miguel and Madonna, Warner Music Latin America announced Thursday.

Change in plans

TORONTO — Canadian heri-tage minister Bev Oda has been forced to cancel a fundraising dinner next week after it was revealed a key industry lobbyist was helping organize the event. Oda spokesman Chisolm Pothier on Thursday confirmed that Charlotte Bell, vp regulatory affairs, TV and radio for domestic broadcaster CanWest MediaWorks, had been among organizers of the Nov. 15 dinner. He added that, despite Oda and Bell being old friends, the federal minister canceled the dinner to avoid any hint of impropriety.