Luna Papa director Bahktiar Khudoinazarov is planning to shoot a low-budget feature Faraway Gochi on location in Russia this September ahead of his $4m-$4.4m (DM 9m-DM 10m) feature Leo which is being slated to shoot in and around Vienna for 12 weeks in spring 2002.
Budgeted at under $440,000 (DM 1m) Faraway Gochi has been written by Oleg Antonov from an idea of Khudoinazarov's about the lives of three 15 year-old boys and will be produced with Russian distributor-producer Partnership. It may also involve Austria's Prisma Film, which was a co-producer on Luna Papa and will be the lead producer on Leo.
Meanwhile, financing is nearly in place for Leo, which is being co-produced by Switzerland's T&C Film, and Germany's Odeon Pictures, with Bavaria Film International handling world rights. Backing has come for the baroque tale which will reunite the director with his Luna Papa star Moritz Bleibtreu, from the Austrian Film Institute (OFI), the Vienna Film Financing Fund (WFF), Austrian public broadcaster ORF, Swiss Television DRS, Switzerland's Bundesamt fuer Kultur (BAK), with a decision pending from Filmboard Berlin-Brandenburg.