It’s too soon to say what impact it may have on Spanish film distribution, but there is no doubt the landmark release of Paco León’s Carmina o revienta, the first big movie to come out simultaneously in theaters, legal internet download sites, pay TV and on DVD in Spain, has been a success.
Its opening weekend saw it become the most legally viewed movie on the internet in Spanish history, with 17,650 downloads over eight websites. Taking into account there would be two viewers for each download, the Ministry of Culture calculates a total of 35,300 web viewers for the film.
The film has been available online for between 1.95 and four euros and on two pay TV services since last Thursday and in 20 movie theaters and on DVD since last Friday. On Filmin, Spain’s most important movie download platform, alone it was rented by 8,000 users. “For us it’s a record,” says Filmin chief Juan Carlos Tous. “It triples, in just four days, our best results, obtained by The Artist, Margin Call and No habrá paz para los malvados.”
The mock documentary, which won three prizes at this year’s Málaga Film Festival, also had the weekend’s sixth best screen average, with a total of 4,545 people from 20 theaters and sold 11,000 copies on DVD. As the Ministry also attributes two viewers to each disc that means a total of 22,000 DVD viewers and gives a grand overall weekend total of 61,845 viewers.
“I was sure it would be successful,” said León, who stumped up the film’s 40,000-euro budget himself and turned down a big distribution offer for the film. “The important thing is not that it is the most downloaded — though that makes me proud — but that it demonstrates the public is prepared for this kind of launch.”