Thematic area: Audiovisual
EU Programme: Media
Name of project: The
of Partners: Cromosoma S.A.
Description of the case study
Cromosoma is a young Catalan company
which has very successfully expanded from producing
a cartoon series in book form, to producing films
of the same characters. Their main asset are the
Triplets, who are perceived in Catalonia as being
authentically Catalan in inspiration and expression,
and often in content as well. The books and the
films are distributed in Catalonia in Catalan.
Selection of possible EU sources
of funding; finding, collecting and analysing
calls for proposals
A member of the secretarial staff
has the specific task of monitoring the relevant
EU calls for proposals, and informing the rest
of the staff as soon as one is published.
The company has accumulated 7
or 8 years of experience in designing successful
proposals for MEDIA programme calls.
They download and carefully read
all the available information on the EU website
announcing and accompanying each call for proposals.
The whole process is complex, and further complicated
by the fact that, though the calls have improved
over the years, they are still unclear in places,
and very generic. In particular, they are not
well adapted to cartoon films (which Cromosoma
has specialised in). The firm has over the years
come to have a good working relationship with
contact persons at the Commission, and this is
very helpful for clarifying any doubts they may
have. They often meet these people at European
cinema fairs, which Media representatives generally
attend. However, EU staff mobility is high, and
this makes it necessary to constantly get to know
They do not feel the need to use
other bibliographic sources to strengthen their
Other sources of funding
The company self-funds whatever
the EU cannot co-fund. All their projects are
intended as commercial ventures that will be sold
on the international market. The EU co-funds up
to 50%, though it doesn't usually reach this figure.
Following the first year, when
a substantial grant was applied for, the financial
assistance the company asks for is in the form
of a loan.
The fact that EU funding is obtained
has not opened up other sources of funding. On
the contrary, the authorities in Spain and Catalonia
tend not to co-fund EU-supported projects, regarding
them as having enough support already!
The project is a three-minute
pilot film which will, at a later stage, be used
to try and find both co-producers to help fund
the full series, as well as television companies
interested in buying the production. Curiously
enough, given the Catalan image the company has,
in order to sell such a product it is made in
English. At a later stage up to 20 language versions
of these films will been made, including of course
No partners are needed, though,
for this stage of the process. Later on, at the
production stage, Catalan or Spanish co-producers
Aims/purposes of the project
The idea of putting a proposal
to the EU in the first place came when, very shortly
before the deadline, the company received information
about a Media call. On the first occasion, about
7-8 years back, the proposal design phase had
to be completed extremely hastily.
Collecting and taking into
account experiences of other projects
The company did not search for
similar experiences which could help to design
or define the project. The Media antenna in Barcelona
was and has continued to be helpful. They would
recommend such a step to other organisations if
and only if they have plenty of advance warning
about the call, and therefore plenty of time to
draft their proposal and, if need be, to set up
a consortium of partners.
did you have (if any) when you designed the proposal?
Analysis of stakeholders
The company has a great deal of
experience in working in the world of film production,
and has not felt the need for specific studies
on identifying the stakeholders, and their interests
and opinions regarding the problem to be solved,
or the challenge to be addressed, in any given
proposal, including this one.
Analysis of the present
situation (problem tree)
The film industry, and particularly in its dealings
with television compsanies, has to face a rapidly
changing market. This dynamism makes it essential
to be extrenmelky well informed about developments,
in order to take advantage of new opportunities
and to stay competitive.
Selection of the topic
The company is careful to ensure
that the general and specific aims of the project
fitted into the priorities laid down in the EU
call for proposals.
Setting up a team to devise
and design the proposal
The drafting team consisted, as
usual, of the internal production team, and usually
outsiders who have brought their ideas to the
The team members on the company's
staff have plenty of experience in developing
To avoid problems in trying to
coordinate or integrate those involved in designing
the proposal, the company negotiates conditions
Self-evaluation systems (ante,
No special attention is given
to taking into account potential risks on the
success of the project, nor are such issues discussed
in the application.
Since the aim is fairly straightforward
- the production of a three-minute pilot production
- the execution of the project has never encountered
obstacles. The company's proposal is never highly
specific, and this allows for some flexibility
which, of course, need not be explained to rthe
The firm has no problems as regards
the working language between any partners or potential
co-producers, and adopts English as the working
language whenever necessary. The staff is sufficiently
equipped both to work in English and to work on
Letters of support to the proposal
are sometimes obtained from relevant institutions
in the field, and included in the application,
particularly when a television company states
a firm interest in the production.
Determining the work plan and
The firm is used to developing
work plans, and this experience is also useful
while writing the proposal.
The company carefully reads the
EU financial statements of the call for proposals,
and works on a budget below the upper limits fixed
by the Commission for expenses related to travel
and accommodation expenses, honoraries fees, salaries
by category and per day, etc.
In this specific case, a grant
is not the aim of the company, but rather a loan,
which is returned once the pilot film starts to
attract customers for the serie or production.
Problems are encountered when
filling in the EU forms. As stated above, they
are sometimes unclear or inappropriate.
Over the years, and thanks to
the early warning system in the company, proposals
are drafted and posted meeting the deadlines of
the call for proposals. Over the years they have
learned to plan better, and to liaise better with
Commission staff. The largely repetitive nature
of the calls is also a help.
European principles and criteria
mentioned in the call are carefully adhered to.
The call is clear in its evaluation system for
proposals, as regards, for instance, the varied
nationality of members of the team.
Comments or recommendations
Our informant said that his company
obtained a grant the first first time it applied,
(when it was far less well-known than it is today).
This suggests that the selection procedure is
not elitist, and is therefore open to newcomers
with good projects.
There seem to be no language requirements
in the calls, which means that proposals for productions
are considered independently of the language they
are to be produced in.
More information :
Mr. Àngel López, Financial Director
c. Perú 174
Tel.: +34 93 266 42 66
http://www.lestresbessones.com / http://www.thetriplets.com/