Newly formed Spanish production company Bruta Escena has signed on the UK's F&ME and Portugal's FBF Filmes to its first feature film, Joao Costa Menezes' Penta.

Each has committed to 10% of the estimated Euros 2.8m budget, according to Bruta Escena founder Rebeka Biguria: FBF as an advance for distribution rights in Portugal; F&ME as a co-producer likely to access sale-and-leaseback funds in the UK.

Scheduled for an early 2004 shoot in Spain, Penta takes place over the course of one night when five women from five different cities hole up in an abandoned house after a car accident leaves each of them with a different of her five senses impaired.

Second-time director Costa Menezes describes Penta as "a fantasy film about women," but adds that it "combines a lot of elements - animation, action, comedy - with audiences in mind beyond just adults interested in the surreal or in women's stories."

He and co-scriptwriter Silvana Menezes (no relation) have also completed another script, period romantic drama Love In Pieces (Amor En Pedazos), set against a Brazilian leprosy colony, with renowned DP Walter Carvalho (Central Station, Carandiru) attached and a likely 50% Brazilian co-producer for Bruta Escena.

Bruta Escena was founded "despite the current crisis," Biguria says, on the strength of the Costa Menezes projects already in development and production. They also include short films, videoclips and the pilot for animated TV series Los Silva, in production with Brazil's Ilha 3.