The Locarno International Film festival (August 6-16), which kicked off last night, is to hold a co-production workshop focusing entirely on projects from Argentina.

New projects by Diego Lerman, director of the Silver Leopard-winning Tan De Repente in Locarno last year, Pablo Trapero (El Bonaerense), Santiago Loza (Extrano) and Juan Manuel Villegas (Sabado) are among eleven projects which will be presented to potential production partners and sales agents in the "Los Argentinos Juniores" workshop.

Held on August 11, it is being organised by the Locarno Film Festival with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation SDC.

The projects being pitched in Locarno are:

Aguas Argentinas, by Veronica Chen. Supported by the Sundance Institute Scriptwriting Lab and Cannes' Cinefondation, the story of a young couple's love affair is now being co-written with Historias Minimas screenwriter Pablo Solarz;

The Bodyguard (El Custodio), by Rodrigo Moreno. Presented at Buenos Aires International Film Festival's project lab LAB, the project will also participate in a workshop being organised by Spanish producer Gerardo Herrero in Madrid in August and November;

Slums (Villa), by Pablo Trapero. His fourth feature shows how a Hollywood mega-star changes the life of Catholic priest working in a deprived neighbourhood of Buenos Aires;

Meanwhile (Mientras Tanto), by Diego Lerman. Lerman's second feature written during his Residence du Festival de Cannes and described as "very atmospheric, but many things will happen as well";

Gemini (Geminis), by Albertina Carri. A story "about excessive love, incomprehensible languages, non-fulfilled needs", to be produced by Barry Ellsworth and Pablo Trapero;

Empty Rooms (Habitaciones Vacias), by Santiago Loza (Extrano). "Some episodes in four women's lives that at some point intertwine" developed during Loza's Residence du Festival de Cannes;

Los Suicidas, by Juan Manuel Villegas (Sabado). An adaptation of a short novel by leading Argentinian writer Antonio Di Benedetto;

Monobloc, by Luis Ortega. About death and disease among three women living in a council flat on the outskirts of Buenos Aires;

Pinboy (Parapalos), by Ana Poliak. Centring on a young boy working as a pinboy at a bowling alley.

Blood (Sangre), by Lisandro Alonso. The story of a man's journey from leaving jail to arriving at home through Argentina's huge swamps

Virginal, by Ernesto Baca. A melodrama developed at Buenos Aires' LAB project laboratory and with a scholarship from Spain's Casa de America

The festival has also organised a special meeting place called "Club dell'Autore" for interested producers to meet the filmmakers in the days after the workshop.