La Trampa

Caribbean Films: Reinvention is what identifies us
Maribel Ramos-Weiner|30 de noviembre de 2022

Caribbean Films, a production house based in the Dominican Republic, is a division of the Caribbean Cinemas group led by Gregory Quinn, managing partner of the company, whose portfolio includes some 11 productions to date: Colao (2017), Qué León (2018), Los Leones (2019), No es lo que Parece (2020), La Vida de los Reyes (2020), La Trampa (2021), Flow Calle (2021); the series, Líos de Familia (2021), Odisea (2021), Teacher Mechy (2022) and Colao 2 (2022).

The production company, according to Zumaya Cordero, general director of Operations, "has managed to produce quality content for the Latino audience, with projects produced under the Film Law 108-10 (articles 34 and 39 of the law). “This law has energized the Dominican film industry”. Caribbean Films movies have been successful in the region and have reached important SVOD deals alongside its distributor, Spanglish Movies.

She refers that in Gustavo Aparicio and his company, Spanglish Movies, “we found the perfect ally that we needed so that our projects could travel. Spanglish Movies manages all the international business of the projects that we produce and has been the spark for us to have very good results due to the experience they have in the market”.

The production house began with the romantic comedy Colao in 2017, becoming one of the "blockbuster" Dominican films in the country that year, Cordero said. It was released in eight countries. "To this day, Colao, is the most valued film of all that Caribbean Films has produced," she said.

In 2018, they did their second project, Qué León, starring Ozuna, Clarisa Molina from Univisión and the duo of Los Reyes del Humor (Raymond Pozo and Miguel Céspedes). With this project they were more bold in crossing borders, she said. “We understood that music was the perfect ally for cinema. We recognized that our next story was going to have a lot of music leveraged by an international urban music star.”

The results of Qué León were unexpected, she said. “It made Caribbean Films known”. It was a US$1.3 million project, with a global star and it debuted in 26 countries. “It has been the most successful Dominican film in the US and it was the first Dominican film to be acquired by Netflix Latin America,” Cordero pointed out. In 2019, they shot the second part, Los Leones.

After Los Leones, they shot their fourth film, the romantic comedy No es lo que Parece, that would debut in 2020, but the pandemic hit. "Although the theaters closed, as a production house we continued to be very active to the point that in June 2020 on the island we shot La Vida de los Reyes, our first biopic, based on the life of Raymond Pozo and Miguel Céspedes." She recalls that with this experience, they designed a health security protocol that allowed them to continue filming.

“What identifies Caribbean Films is reinvention. We began with romantic comedies, it was what worked for us, but then we took a risk and made an urban film with original music, we took risks again and made a period biopic of two Dominican comedians and then another, with Ozuna, an international music star. Then we did a comedy series, Líos de Familia, with a format that we had never worked with before. Then The Trap, which is a film that flirts with the action and thriller genre. And now we have a children's comedy, Teacher Mechy, which will debut in the DR, the US, Puerto Rico and Central America in January 2023,” she commented.

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