Paris-based producing duo Gil Donaldson and Carol Polakoff are moving quickly to capitalise on the anticipated success of their Directors' Fortnight film Shimkent Hotel.

The film, which screens in the ACID section of the Fortnight, is the directorial debut of bad-boy artist and former jockey Charles de Meaux.

Boasting a clutch of the rising French actors including Melvil Poupaud, Romain Duris and Caroline Ducey, Shimkent Hotel is a psychological thriller which shot in Kazhakhstan, Tadjikstan, and Kirgizstan. Donaldson who positions the film somewhere between The Blair Witch Project and Memento and says: "Meaux, who has a unique style, uses a series of interviews as we discover more or the man's murderous past,"

Donaldson Polakoff Productions made the picture on a budget under $1m raised entirely from private sources. It is now working on Speak Sunlight, an adaptation of an Alain Jols novel about a train journey through Franco's Spain. Spanish star Carmen Maura is expected to make her English-language debut in the picture which will be shot in summer 2003 with Polakoff directing.