Almost half (26) of the projects being pitched in one-to-one meetings are from Western Europe, including Cardiff-based Chris Forster's first solo feature, the $2.8m (Euros 2m) thriller The Mire Archive, which is to be produced by Eclectic Films with Vertigo Films and Denmark's NWR Productions; UK director Sean Martin's feature-length documentary Tarkovsky: The Mirror Of Time; and Prey Of An Obsessive Love, the next feature by Belgium's Geoffrey Enthoven who won last year's Grand Prix in Mannheim for The Only One.
Among the 12 projects coming from Central and Eastern Europe are Czech director-producer Milan Cieslar's $1.4m (Euros 1m) English-language thriller Hangman's Legacy, based on a script by Peter Howey; Otar Shamatava's $2.8m (Euros 2m) drama Ursus Arctos Caucasicus, a bizarre story about a Georgian director dreaming of the Berlinale's Golden Bear, to be produced by Germany's ma.ja.de filmproduktion with Georgia's Imedi TV and Kazakhstan's Aksai BMC; and Lithuanian Ignas Miskinis' urban drama Low Lights which will be produced by Vilnius-based Tremora with Germany's Troika Entertainment.
The highest budgeted project in this year's crop is Agnieszka Holland's $14m (Euros 10m) drama Christine based on the life of Krystyna Skarbek who was described by Winston Churchill as the most outstanding British spy of the Second World War. The English-language production by SPI International Polska will be shot at locations across Europe and Africa.
While Canada is represented this year by four projects - including Wiebke von Carolsfeld's Stay which had been presented at the Berlinale Co-Production Market in February - there are nine projects from Latin America, including Colombian Ruben Mendoza's feature debut The Stoplight Society which already has partners onboard from Spain and Argentina and will be looking for a German production partner in Mannheim.