New feature projects by Ireland's Johnny Gogan, Georgia's Nana Djordjadze, Poland's Robert Glinski and Nigeria's Balufu Bakupa-Kanyinda are among 55 films from Europe, Canada, Latin America and Africa with a total production volume of Euros 84m being pitched at this year's Mannheim Meetings co-production market.

From November 21-25, 600 pre-arranged one-to-one meetings will be held with potential co-production or co-financing partners, and another 200 informal discussions are likely.

In addition, 20 distributors, 30 sales agents and three broadcasters will have 300 one-to-one meetings in Mannheim to discuss the acquisition of films for theatrical release in Germany and abroad. Deals were signed in the past for such films as Red Coloured Grey Truck, Boats Out Of Watermelon Rinds and Dias De Santiago.

Meanwhile, the International Mannheim-Heidelberg Film Festival will be opened on Friday (November 18) by Sergej Stanojkovski's feature debut Contact, which was pitched at the 2003 Mannheim Meetings.

The tragic comedy about two misfits starring Labina Mitevska (How To Kill A Saint) and Nikola Kojo was scripted by Stanojkovski with veteran screenwriter Gordan Mihic and was the only Macedonian feature film to go before the camera in the former Yugoslav republic last year.

Contact will be competing in Mannheim-Heidelberg's International Competition with 19 other films including John D. Harkrider's Mitchellville (US), Jan Dunn's Gypo (UK), Igor Sterk's Tuning (Slovenia), Perry Ogden's Pavee Lackeen (Ireland) and Alicia Scherson's Play (Chile).