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Culture subsidizes Benalmádena to digitize the archive of the International Week of Author Film

The Ministry of Culture and Sports has granted a grant of 6,732.96 euros to the Arroyo de la Miel Public Library to digitize the archive of the Benalmádena International Week of Author Film (Sicab), which includes the bibliographic collection of library.

In the words of the Councilor for Culture, Pablo Centella, “because of its age and the importance of its content, our archive on Sicab is the most important collection of our bibliographic-documentary heritage, increasingly consulted by writers and researchers who investigate the cultural past of the Costa del Sol”,

The file on Sicab, which contains about 300 documents, also includes chronicles about the event signedby pens as prestigious as those of Gabriel García Márquez, Mario Vargas Llosa or Rosa Montero, in addition to valuable photographs about the festival, a pioneer in the projection of auteur films in our country.

Similarly, according to information provided by the director of the Library, Maricarmen Martín Lara, also treasures from the posters announcing the various editions to documents as valuable as a carta de Martin Scorsese, que en sus inicios como cineasta solicitaba con esta misiva participar en el festival benalmadense.

The director of the Library has also announced that, at present, the entire valuable local collection of the Library is being cataloged and digitized, an arduous and complex process that is being coordinated by Conchi Burgos.

History of Sicab

In 1969, Luis Mamerto López-Tapia, from a Basque hotel family settled in Benalmádena, convinced Enrique Bolín, mayor of the municipality, to hold a film festival in the town, and thus theBenalmádena International Author Film Week ( Sicab). The project is sponsored by Fraga Iribarne – then Minister of Information and Tourism and who had good relations with Enrique Bolín – who saw it as an interesting element for his development plan for the Andalusian coast.

In the words of López-Tapia, “the Week was born from a contradiction, not apparent but real, between its cultural, progressive, anti-establishment vocation, and a political regime that prevented the freedom of expression enjoyed by the rest of the European countries. It had economic sponsorship from the large tourism companies in the area, even when they did not agree with the aforementioned conceptual approaches, and with the organizational and financial support of the Benalmádena City Council itself, then governed by the youngest mayor in Spain, risky, enterprising, intuitive, but logically subject to the Fundamental Principles of the Movement”.

After the political problems that arose in the second edition of the Week, with the inevitable clashes between the freedom with which its organizers selected the films and the repressive atmosphere, López-Tapia was dispensed with.

A prestigious critic, José Luis Guarner, from Barcelona, ​​who directed the Week for a year, is used for the third edition. It was a period of transition from which a new and definitive stage would emerge, which, under the direction of Cadiz-born director Julio Diamante, would last until 1989 and would constitute its most brilliant and fruitful period.

Diamante turned to auteur cinema, programming dozens of films, many of which would never be released in commercial theaters due to censorship, and catapulted the Week into one of the most important film events in Spain in those years.

According to municipal sources, years later, in 1998, the Malaga Spanish Film Festival would be born, promoted by the then Councilor for Culture, Antonio Garrido Moraga, as an event heir to Sicab, as a result of an initiative by the municipal group of Left United that, in May 1996, presented a motion – unanimously approved by the corporation – to recover the spirit and prestige of the disappeared Benalmádena Author Film Week.

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