47-year-old Martin Samper is single and has no children. He was born in Saint Etienne in France, and studied in Rouen, Bordeaux, and Madrid before moving to Barcelona in 1999, when he started working at Filmax. In 2008, he decided to launch his own film production company No Hay Banda, with which he has (co)produced four feature films that have won awards in over 120 festivals around the world, including two Gaudís from the Catalan Film Academy.
Why did you choose Barcelona?
I got to know Catalonia as a child when I came with my family to spend the summer holidays. After finishing my studies, I was looking for work in Barcelona and Madrid when a very interesting opportunity came up at Filmax.
What would you consider to be Barcelona’s strengths?
Barcelona’s cosmopolitanism is undoubtedly one of its greatest assets, along with its great architectural wealth, in particular its unique form of Art Nouveau.
Its location close to France provides excellent connections with the rest of Europe, and both its climate and position between the sea and the mountains make it ideal. Lastly, I should mention the quality and variety of gastronomy in the city.
What aspects of the city need to be improved?
I have been living in the city since 1999 and I feel that the range and quality of cultural events have decreased significantly. I travel to Madrid and Paris frequently and I am conscious that Barcelona has much to do to reach the same standard as those two cities.
Mass tourism has shot up during the last decade, which has sadly resulted in a drop in standards in the city.
What do you expect from Barcelona in the coming years?
I would like it to be more ambitious in the world of culture at European level. I would also love Barcelona to recover its unique character, since Barcelona has lost part of its personality like many large cities.
Where do you feel most at home? What do you miss the most?
Barcelona and Paris are the two cities in which I spend the majority of my time. And I also travel to Madrid from time to time. The three cities provide me with a balance that no one city is able to do alone.
If you are an expatriate living in the city and want to help improve Barcelona to attract more high-impact talent, you can complete the survey here: https://barcelonaglobal.civi-go.net/en/6th_international_talent_monitor