In the current scenario of the Spanish film sector, co-productions are gaining strength year after year. Over the last ten years (2005-2015), 560 feature films have been coproduced with foreign countries.
What are international co-productions?
Films that are jointly produced with foreign companies, governed by applicable international treaties or, by default, by the general rules established in the Spanish Film Act Regulations.
What does Spain have to offer?
The filmmaking and audiovisual business is a strategic sector in Spain´s culture and economy. Salto de línea Some reasons to shoot in Spain: Tax advantages, Amazing variety of locations (peaceful beaches with crystal clear water, rough seas, snowy mountains, tropical landscapes, arid horizons, rural villages, remote roads, modern cities, prehistoric monuments, cutting-edge buildings), Professionals and service companies with experience working with foreign companies, A perfect climate with more than 300 long sunny days a year pleasant temperatures both in winter and in summer, Safe and comfortable country, Rich offer in catering and accommodation, extensive network of infrastructures and transportation with the most complete high-speed rail network in Europe, 48 airports and more than 180,000 miles of roads and motorways, Quality lifestyle in Spain, Most modern film studios in Europe.
Co-produce with Spain
All co-productions governed by international treaties are considered national productions, which is why the same sources of funds are available as for purely national productions.
Financing in Spain
All audiovisual co-productions governed by international treaties, considered national co-productions, may benefit from:
- ICAA financial aid for creation, production and promotion.
- Tax breaks due to investments in cinematographic and audiovisual productions.
Characteristics of the contributions
- Each co-producer’s percentage participation, based on its economic share, will necessary require proportional effective contributions, in creative, technical and services terms, as well as shooting locations outside or inside, unless the script requires a shooting elsewhere.
- As an exception, in the case of co-productions with a Spanish participation exceeding 50%, the Spanish co-producer (or non-Spanish company belonging to a European Union Member State or European Economic Area with a branch office in Spain), monetary contributions may be made that are less than 50% of the economic quantification of said creative, technical and services contributions, as long as they are expressly gathered in the co-production agreement submitted and are approved in the project.
- Each co-producer, as a general rule, will bear all costs related to creative and other technical staff of its same nationality, and any items and payments stipulated in the project as payable by another co-producer country will not be acknowledged as contributions by the Spanish side.
- For the purposes of any public aid that the cinematographic film or audiovisual work may ultimately generate, the cost borne by the Spanish co-producer (or non-Spanish company belonging to a European Union Member State or European Economic Area with a branch office in Spain) may include the participation of any creative staff, admitted as an exception, as long as the staff belongs to European Union countries. In no case will the Spanish cost be deemed to include expenses incurred by staff belonging to non-EU states.
- The contribution made by the minority Spanish co-producer will entail, at least, the participation of an author (such as the director, screenwriter, director of photography and music composer); two actors and one technical creative. The effective participation of staff in all of these categories will be proportion to the Spanish participation percentage in the co-production.
- All post-production tasks will be preferably completed in the studios and laboratories of the majority country. If the majority co-producer is a national of a European Union Member State, they may be completed in any member countries.
- The printing of copies or issue of any support for reproduction may be carried out in any of the co-producer countries. If one or several of the co-producers are nationals of European Union Member States, these tasks may be completed in any member countries.
Requirement applicable to co-production with Spain
- The projects in question should be considered as national projects in the co-producing countries and be entitled to the benefits granted in said countries under their respective laws.
- Execution by creative and technical staff and services companies holding the nationality of one of the co-producing countries. As an exception, 10% of all creative staff may be non-EC or not a national of the co-producing countries.
- Participation of the co-producing countries should range between 20% and 80% of the film’s budget or, for multi-party co-productions, the smallest participation must be at least 10% and the greatest 70% of the budget, as a maximum.
Co-production projects may be approved that involve one or several contributions, limited to a financial contribution, if the following conditions are met:
- The project is able to obtain approval from the majority co-producer’s country.
- All financial contributions must be at least 10% and not greater than 25% of the project’s budget.
- Co-production must help promote the cultural diversity of the co-producing countries.
Approval of this form of co-production is conditioned to the general balance sheet existing between the co-producing countries.
Documentation required to approve the co-production
Approval of the co-production project will be requested from ICAA or the competent autonomous body before the producer begins to shoot the cinematographic film or other audiovisual work. All applications filed once shooting has begun will be dismissed. Each application will include:
- Document confirming the assignment by the author(s) of the script or, as the case may be, of the option or assignment of a pre-existing work, and certification confirming registration of the script at the Intellectual Property Registry.
- Screenplay of the cinematographic film or other audiovisual work and shooting plan.
- Economic budget of the project, following an official form, indicating the items and payments applicable to each country participating in the co-production.
- An identification list of all creative and other technical staff, indicating their nationality.
- Co-production agreement specifying the parties’ clauses on the various issues regulated in Royal Decree 1084/2015 , of 4 December, implementing the Film Act, specifically indicating each co-producer’s participation, the contributions made by creative and all other technical staff, the monetary transfers made by each co-producer and market and profit shares. If the co-production agreement is drafted in a language other than Spain, a Spanish translation will also be provided.
How to find a spanish partner
See at the ICAA website www.icaa.es where you can find a film directory with the different associations of producers in Spain.
Convention search engine
Application for the approval of co-productions between spanish and foreign producers