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CINEMA

Spanish necrophilia movie is surprise hit in the Philippines

When it premiered in Spain, only 9,000 saw it. But the creepy movie about necrophilia has been viewed illegally six million times in the Philippines.

Spanish necrophilia movie is surprise hit in the Philippines
Archive photo of a body in a hospital. Photo: Jeff Pachou/AFP.

Director Hèctor Hernández Vicens' first feature film The Corpse of Anna Fritz has only been viewed 9,000 times, making just €36,000 in Spain since its premiere in October, according to entertainment magazine Fotogramas.

But in the Philippines, the creepy thriller is raking in millions of views – all illegally.

The film tells the disturbing story of three young friends who decide to be the last people to have sex with a dead, beautiful actress named Anna Fritz inside of a morgue.

WARNING: The following tráiler shows scenes some may find offensive

Fotogramas estimated that the movie has been viewed between 5 million to 7 million times in the Philippines, but the filmmakers are not making any money there.

The movie crew told reporters that they started seeing dozens of messages posted on the film's unofficial Facebook page, written in Tagalog, the most widely spoken language in the Philippines, and other local languages.

They asked their distribution company whether the film was being sold in the Philippines, and were told that it was not. Soon they found that a pirated copy was circulating around Facebook.

One of the actors and producers on the film, Bernat Saumell, has said that the movie team launched legal action to try to stop the illegal distribution of the film.

They have managed to get YouTube to pull a version posted on their site and have hired lawyers 

They also want to screen the film in the Pacific island country and promote the movie there.

The movie has been shown at a number of film festivals around the world, including South by Southwest in Austin, Texas and the London Film Festival.

That a film with such distasteful subject matter should prove such a hit in the Philippines is hardly surprising.

According to Google Trends, the Philippines tops the list where the term 'necrophilia' is most searched for. 

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CINEMA

‘The Girls’ wins big at Spain’s live-streamed 2021 Goya awards

Pilar Palomero’s debut coming of age film ‘Girls’ was the big winner at the 2021 Goya Awards on Saturday, held via a live-streamed ceremony.

‘The Girls’ wins big at Spain's live-streamed 2021 Goya awards
Antonio Banderas presented the 35th Goya Awards with Spanish journalist María Casado. Photo: Jorge Guerrero/AFP

The Goyas, Spain’s prestigious annual film awards ceremony, was held at the Teatro del Soho CaixaBank in Málaga. It was a hybrid on-site/virtual ceremony, with no audience nor nominees attending in person.

‘The Girls’, a generation portrait of Spanish women who would now be in their 40s, swept the awards, winning best picture, best new director, best original screenplay, and best cinematography.

Nominees appeared on a large video screen in a Zoom-like setup, and winners accepted prizes from their own homes with their families, giving the ceremony a more intimate feel than usual.

Málaga-born Antonio Banderas directed the ceremony, and other big stars such as Pedro Almodóvar, Penélope Cruz, Paz Vega, and Alejandro Amenábar also made appearances to present the awards.

The non-audience format gave the ceremony, which is broadcast on TV, a larger reach than usual. Celebrities including Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Charlize Theron, and Isabelle Huppert sent in pre-recorded messages of support.

Just two days before international women’s day, gender issues featured strongly in nominated films and acceptance speeches. Women won almost as much as men, taking 12 categories, and Daniela Cajías became the first woman director of photography to win the best cinematography award for “Girls.”

In other categories, Mario Casas won best actor for “No Matarás” (Cross the Line), about a good-natured man who has an unexpectedly deadly confrontation, and Patricia López Arnaíz won best actress for her role in Ane (Ane is Missing), in which she plays a mother who investigates her daughter’s disappearance.

The Honorary Goya was awarded to actress Angela Molina, who starred in Luis Buñuel’s last film, “The Obscure Object of Desire”.

Last year, Pedro Almodóvar’s semi-autobiographical film Pain and Glory was the star of the ceremony, winning seven honours, including best picture, best director, original screenplay, and best actor for Antonio Banderas.

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