20th Century Fox is planning to tap into the German private equity market to raise funds for feature projects.

Munich-based Fox Deutsche Filmproduktion Beteiligung has been founded to attract private investors' money for four projects: John Pasquin's Joe Somebody starring Tim Allen, James Belushi and Julie Bowen; Bobby and Peter Farrelly comedy Shallow Hal, with Jason Alexander, Gwyneth Paltrow and Jack Black; the Adrian Lyne drama Unfaithful, with Richard Gere, Diane Lane and Olivier Martinez; and Mick Jackson's comedy The First $20 Million Is Always The Hardest with Enrico Colantoni, Rosario Dawson and Andy Garcia.

Fox will be the latest in a line of US major studios to turn to German funds for backing: Sony, Universal and Paramount have all done so already.

Over the past four years, private German film funds raised hundreds of millions of Deutschmarks for the financing of such major studio projects as Mission Impossible: 2, Double Jeopardy, Stuart Little, Snow Days, Rules Of Engagement and The End Of The Affair