Busy Cross Creek Pictures has partnered with Vertebra Films to fully finance two horror projects that Eli Roth will produce.

Cross Creek recently announced its involvement with Exclusive Media Group, Smoke House Pictures and Appian Way Films on the George Clooney political drama The Ides Of March.

It will handle all distribution on the films in conjunction with CAA. The Vertebra Films equity fund is financing the projects and was launched recently by Steven Chester Prince with the goal of backing two to three films a year in the $3-20m range.

The first project Roth will produce is Clown and could go into production in the first quarter of 2011. Jon Watts will direct from a screenplay by Christopher D Ford about a family man who dons a possessed clown outfit.

The second project, Aftershock, takes place in the aftermath of the February 2010 Chilean earthquake. Plot details are being kept under wraps. Roth wrote the screenplay with Latin-American film-makers Nicolas Lopez (Fuck My Life) and Guillermo Amoedo, with Lopez set to direct.

“Eli pitched these to us at a lunch, and by the time we got back to our offices we were already talking with his agents,” Cross Creek president Brian Oliver said. “He has an affinity and respect for the genre that shows through in all of his films.”

Prince added that he and his investor partners had been looking for the right projects to launch the fund. “We stopped looking after meeting Eli Roth.

CAA represents Roth and Oliver and put the deal together along with Cross Creek’s and Vertebra’s attorney Eric Greenfeld of Rosenfeld, Meyer & Susman.