New projects from Terence Malick and Luis Mandoki are being developed by Constantin Film, the production arm of Bernd Eichinger's Neue Constantin, through its joint venture with Propaganda Films. In addition the German outfit has purchased two books in the UK through its joint venture with Impact Pictures.

Malick - who enjoyed a strong relationship with Propaganda Films president Rick Hess when he made The Thin Red Line at Hess' former company Phoenix Pictures - is developing a medieval myth set in Arthurian England called Ragnell.

Malick will produce and might direct depending on the screenplay which is currently being written. The film is a fable telling the story of a man forced to marry a hideously ugly woman who discovers that a spell has been cast on her - she can be beautiful for 12 hours a day and ugly for the remaining 12 and he must decide which.

Propaganda management client Mandoki, whose credits include White Palace and Message In A Bottle, is developing a New York-set satire set in the competitive world of nouvelle cuisine chefs. "It's Shampoo for chefs," said Robert Kulzer, Constantin's LA-based production and acquisitions chief.

Meanwhile, the Constantin/Impact joint venture has bought two new books out of London - serial killer thriller Birdman by Mo Hayder and The Rhythm Section by Mark Burnell which Constantin is currently retitling Soft Kill for the screen version and which Kulzer describes as a "female James Bond" vehicle.