NoDream Cinema, headed up byMexico's Carlos Reygadas, and Jaime Romandia's Mantarraya Producciones are upping their collaboration to back fourupcoming projects, all budgeted around the $500,000 mark.

New projects by Reygadas and Amat Escalante (Los Bastardos) are joined by A Mexican Story, by Russia's Artur Aristakisian, and a directorial debut by Spain's Pedro Aquilera called La Influencia (The Influence), set to start shooting inMadrid shortly.

Two of the projects, by Escalante and Aristakisian,are currently being presented at Rotterdam'sCineMart co-production market.

Reygadas' next project, which hesays is "very advanced", is a love story about a "great romantic love - likeTristan and Isolde." Escalante's follow-up to Sangre, Los Bastardos,is set in Mexicoand the US andfocuses on 24 hours in the life of two illegal immigrants working in California.Reygadas, who lives for half the year in Madrid,will be on hand to supervise the Alquilera shoot,which he describes as being "about the freedom of children."

A Mexican Story, budgeted at $500,000, is the result of ameeting in Moscow between Regaydas and Aristakisian,director of A Place OnEarth. "This guy has the talent of Rossellini," says Regadas,whose Japon and Battle In Heaven both premiered at Cannes."It's ridiculous that nobody wanted to produce his work - it was my turn tohelp."

The action is set in Mexicoas Reygadas couldn't perform producer's duties in Russia."The Russian and Mexican mentality are quite similar - carnal but tormented,"says the director. "We love excess, corruption and narco."

Although NoDreams' current slateof four films is a significant advance on the three it has made since thecompany was founded in 2000, Reygadas denies it's adeliberate strategy. "We have no aims," he says. "We are just following oureveryday will, to make international films by humans, about humans. The fundscan come from anywhere, the films can come fromanywhere."

Previously, NoDreams backed Reygadas two films and Escalante's debut Sangre, whichpremiered at Cannes last year.