TorinoFilmLab - Training, development, Funding



William Vega Donneys, Oscar Ruíz Navia, Andrea Estrada Gutìerrez



Heraldo undertakes a trip to find out who his missing father was. To do this, he must cross a big desert zone in Colombia on his old motorcycle.
On the road, in the high and rocky mountains, he has an accident that leaves him wounded at the bottom of an abyss. There, Salomón and Magdalena, a couple who lives hidden among the arid landscape, find him and care for him.
They feed him with cactus and treat his injuries with salt, but Heraldo’s exterior wounds are just a sign of his scarred soul. By erasing the traces of his past, Heraldo can return to the path.


Sal explores the relationship between man, nature, destiny, and the never-ending struggle to gain wisdom. This is a movie about a man who wants answers and when he finds them, discovers that they are useless. His real lesson, if he can grasp it, will be to recognize this.
Heraldo represents humanity’s fears, wishes, losses and yearnings.
His transformation will not be possible until he breaks this cycle, and he will only control his own destiny when he understands his torment.
His narrative is clouded by his confused mind. Past, present and future are indistinct, as are fact, fiction and illusions.
Heraldo knew that someday he would pass through here, but he did not know until yesterday that today would be that day.

budget & financing

Contravia Films was founded in 2006 by a group of Communicators and Visual Artists with the objective to build a solid platform of independent cinema in Colombia. Our feature films have been premiered at major festivals worldwide, like Cannes, Berlin, Toronto and San Sebastián. Our filmography includes: Crab Trap (El Vuelco del Cangrejo), winner of the FIPRESCI Prize in Berlin 2010, La Sirga selected for Cannes Directors’ Fortnight 2012 and Los Hongos, Special Jury Prize, Locarno 2014. We have a strong script that was developed over the last two years with the support of Cinéfondation, TFL Script&Pitch (ARTE Prize), FrameWork, Ibermedia and the San Sebastián co-production market 2014. Now we are focused on the financing, hoping to close it by the end of Spring 2015 with a total budget of € 507.000. The financing plan aims to ensure national financing in three countries. At this stage we have two partners, Bredok Film from Germany and Cine Sud Promotion from France with 20% of the budget for each country. We have applied for FDC, Colombian Fund, from which we expect to get € 275.600 for production and we will apply French and German funds in the beginning of next year. We are looking for additional financing from world sales and TV pre-sales. Our aim is to shoot in July 2015 and complete the film by January 2016.

distribution & sales

Sal is a project of great international relevance. It is expected that the film will premiere internationally at renowned festivals such as Cannes, San Sebastián, Toronto, Venice and Locarno, before continuing on to premiere in the co-production countries. In this way we wish to find partners for distribution and sales agents that can collaborate to exploit the universal potential of this project. Along with a belief in experimentation that comes from Contravía Films, art-house cinema takes upon itself challenges that not only relate to language, but also to distribution. To reach a wider audience we must devise alternative ways for the public to access the film, which are not currently offered by standard channels. We have built a network with various alternative cinema spaces in Colombia, including approximately 80 cultural centres, museums and intermediate cities that do not lie within the commercial distribution circuit. With this network, combined with the networks of our co-producers, we are working to strengthen the distribution of Sal. We cannot ignore the roles that digital media play at this stage. Thanks to successful experiences with iTunes, Netflix, Amazon, DVD and PPV with La Sirga, these new channels will prove critical for the distribution of the film. Traditional channels will also play a decisive role, through which we hope to reach some 30.000 spectators in Colombia. Successful on-line forms of distribution will be our challenge for Sal. We hope to subvert the idea of “cinema for the few” and, by strengthening options for alternative forms of display, create possibilities through which the public might approach the cinematic experience in new ways.

A man seeks answers about his killed father. After an accident he will be trapped in a deep abyss.
William Vega Donneys

Scriptwriter, Film Director

Oscar Ruíz Navia

Scriptwriter, Film Director, Production

Andrea Estrada Gutìerrez


production notes

directed by
William Vega Donneys

produced byContraVia Films
Carrera 24B No 2A-27 Ap 201. Barrio Miraflores

in co-production with
Ciné-Sud Promotion - France

Bredok Film Production - Germany

total production budget
€ 507.000

current financial need
€ 405.000