Fabrizio Mosca, producer of the Italian Oscar candidate The Hundred Steps, is lining up three English-language pictures, including Return to Haifa - a breakthrough Israeli-Palestinian-Italian film about Middle East tensions.

Return to Haifa is based on a book by a leading Palestinian author, Ghassan Kanafani, who was killed by Mossad twenty years ago. Mosca bought the rights from Kanafani's widow, who insisted on an Israeli-Palestinian collaboration on the project.

Mosca said an Israeli and a Palestinian writer - whose names could not be revealed - have been working on the English-language script about a Palestinian couple who are forced to flee their country when it is invaded in 1948, leaving behind their five-month old son. Twenty years later, they return to their house which is now occupied by a Jewish Polish woman who has adopted their son. The rest of the story focuses on the relationship between the Palestinian couple's second son and their firstborn, who is now Israeli.

In Cannes, Mosca is searching for a UK or Italian director and European partners to board the English-language project, produced with Maurizio Santerelli from Rome's CDP.

Titti Films, Mosca's Rome production outfit, is also in talks with AltaVista (Amores Perros) to board The Silent One, an English and Spanish language thriller. Titti is also producing an English-language erotic thriller, entitled Too Young, by director Luca Guadagnino (The Protagonist).