German finance house MBP has launched its second tranche of investment, through which it will back Istvan Szabo's $10.5m Taking Sides amongst other projects.

The Munich-based outfit plans to raise up to $42.7m (DM100m) from German individuals seeking to lessen their tax burden by the end of 2001.

Taking Sides, which is also backed by Studio Babelsberg and StudioCanal, has been shooting in Dresden since October 16 with Harvey Keitel and Stellan Skarsgard in the leads.

Other projects to receive investment from the fund include Fred Schepisi's Last Orders, which is also currently shooting, Iain Softley's long-gestating $13.5m mystery thriller Boathouse, John Goldschmidt's $10m Days Of Fear and Terry Ryan's $5.9m comedy Puckoon, based on Spike Milligan's book.

The German finance house plans to stump up at least 60% of the budget of each film backed through its second fund and is lining up 100% financing for another two projects: Deal Kings, produced by US outfit Janus Films and sold internationally by UGC International, and Ten Minutes Older, a $5m collection of 15 shorts by world class directors such as Bernardo Bertolucci and Jim Jarmusch which will be distributed by webcaster AtomFilms.

MBP's first fund with an estimated production volume of $39.3m (DM92m), co-produced a raft of projects including Kimble Rendall's Cut, Declan Lowney's comedy Wild About Harry and IMAX format film Equus.