Almeria’s professionals have talent and the joint work of the Provincial Council and Almeria City Council to promote filming in the province is generating more employment in the sector. That is why FICAL is dedicating a night to recognising the work of this land. It is the Almeria Audiovisual Gala, which has celebrated its fifth edition at the Maestro Padilla Auditorium… Lights, cameras, action.
The emotion of the award winners, the blue carpet of the festival, the gala dress, the live songs of Juanjo García, the premiere screenings and the carefully chosen scenography made it possible to experience a spectacular ceremony. A gala of and for the people of Almería, sponsored by Cosentino and presented by Diego Bravo, where the series ‘Jaguar’ was recognised with the Filming Almería award, ASFAAM paid tribute in memoriam to Antonio Galindo, alma mater of the competition ‘Miradas adolescentes’, the Kiko Medina award for the best production project from Almería went to ‘El peso de la ausencia’, by Alberto Gómez Uriol, the best short film went to ‘Mi pequeña muerte’ by Daniel Parra, and the award for the 48 x 3 Marathon went to ‘Reinas’, by the team directed by Pablo Reche Beltrán.
The challenge facing the entire Almeria industry is the growth of filming in the province. That is why every year FICAL awards prizes to major national or international productions that have promoted this film destination through their presence in Almería. This is the ‘Filming Almería’ award, which has gone to the series ‘Jaguar’, a Netflix hit that even gives the title ‘Almería’ to one of the six episodes, and where the landscape of the province plays a key role throughout the production. Starring Blanca Suárez, Iván Marcos, Francesc Garrido, Adrián Lastra, Óscar Lastra and Stefan Weinert and set in the 1960s, it tells the story of Isabel Garrido, a young Spanish woman who managed to survive the Mauthausen extermination camp, and who joins a group of Spaniards seeking justice against the Nazi refugees in Spain.
The award was presented by the President of the Provincial Council, Javier A. García, to the director of the series, Carlos Sedes, and to Iván Marcos, one of the main characters. The President of Almería Provincial Council, Javier A. García, emphasised that “this is the night of the people of Almería in our audiovisual industry who, in turn, are the main protagonists of FICAL. Today we celebrate the fact that we have the best professionals and the best stages so that film continues to be a reality in our land, creating jobs, wealth and spreading the ‘Costa de Almería’ destination around the world. From the Provincial Council we will continue to promote our professionals because they are the most valuable calling card of the seventh art in the province of Almeria.
Projects from Almería
FICAL has the support of society as a whole. The gala dedicated to the people of Almería could not be less. For this reason, in addition to Cosentino, it has received the collaboration of Almería City Council, the Regional Government of Andalusia, RTVE, Movistar Plus and La Caixa Foundation. The festival not only aims to become a platform for promoting filming in the province. It also wants to showcase the talent that exists among local professionals. Thus, at the V Gala del Audiovisual Almeriense there has been a lot of footage dedicated to projecting these works. First of all, the six finalists of the 48 x 3 Marathon Award, the works led by Judith Azor, María Antonia Navarro, Alberto Vicente Cuesta, Pablo Reche, Carla Bretones, and Juan Sebastián Castro, were shown. Almost at the end of the gala, the winners were announced: ‘Reinas’, by the team directed by Pablo Reche Beltrán.
The teaser of ‘Un nuevo renacer’, a musical film that tells the story of Concha Robles, a theatre actress, singer, poet and ahead of her time, of great success and fame at the beginning of the 20th century, was also shown for the first time. David Miralles, the driving force behind the project and composer of the soundtrack, took part. The short film ‘Enero del 66’, by Jaime García Parra, one of last year’s winners, was also screened, and the director himself presented the work.
We keep on filming: Another of the awards of the gala recognizes the best short film of the cycle ‘Almería Tierra de cortometrajes’, The winner has been ‘Mi pequeña muerte’, by Daniel Parra. At the same time, the audiovisual production projects from Almería are awarded, an award named after Kiko Medina, as a posthumous tribute to a professional who did a lot for the film industry in Almería. For this reason, his parents Inocencia Bellver and Santiago Medina took the stage to present the award to ‘El peso de la ausencia’, by Alberto Gómez Uriol. Second was ‘Nana (Lullaby)’, by Veramaya Producciones, and Eva Almaya collected it. Third was ‘El ladrón de lluvia’, by Luis Sánchez Martínez.
Tribute to Antonio Galindo
The Andalusian Association of Audiovisual Festivals (ASFAAN) joins FICAL every year with an award that this year they wanted to dedicate posthumously to Antonio Galindo, teacher and promoter of the ‘Miradas adolescentes’ competition, which involves high school students in the festival through a cross-cutting initiative that unites awareness of gender violence and audiovisuals. As Diego Bravo stated in the presentation, “Antonio Galindo has left a deep void within us that we will fill by always keeping his memory alive and the great cultural and social legacy that he has left in all Almerians”. His wife, María Dolores Durán, took the stage for the recognition.
New scene: The 5th Almeria Audiovisual Gala belongs to all the professionals who make it possible for the projects to go ahead. For this reason, a space has been dedicated to make a plea in favour of the technicians who may not appear first in the credits but are just as important for the magic of cinema to reach the spectators. Pol Andreu, audiovisual producer and scriptwriter, and Jesús Salvador Bina, who works in the wardrobe and make-up departments, gave a voice to those people who usually wear black on the set: “Strengthening this industry is the dream we are all fighting for. And it is happening. More and more productions are coming to our province. And almost all of them have technicians from Almería. And the best thing of all is that many film proposals from Almerian filmmakers are also being born”. They complete this sentence by assuring that every name that appears in the credits is a person who seeks to work with dignity, and thanks to the comradeship, projects have been saved. From the person who cuts a street to the person who directs the film. From the caterer to the editor, and most of the time their work is invisible to everyone. For this reason, the Gala wanted to give a sincere and well-deserved applause to all the technicians who participate in audiovisual projects. “Because they are one of the indispensable resources on which the film industry in Almería relies”.
After the emotion, it was time to share the gala in the large photocall that presides over the Maestro Padilla Auditorium. Tonight, the local professionals have been the main protagonists of the film.