Los Angeles-based Cinema Libre Studio and Belgium’s Corsan NV have formed Global Talent Laboratory, a production partnership that will make three arthouse pictures a year.

Cinema Libre founder Philippe Diaz and Corsan founder Paul Breuls aim to work with new film-makers from around the world on stories with global appeal budgeted from $1m-3m (€732,000 - €2.1m).

The first film, scheduled to begin production in November, is The Last Days Of Karl Marx. It will shoot in Algeria, Belgium and Germany and is structured as a co–production between Corsan and Jean-Jacques Beineix’s production company Cargo Films. Diaz will direct and Carine Leblanc of Cargo Films and Corsan’s Catherine Vandeleene will produce.

The two other projects on the initial slate, set to begin shooting in 2010, are Robert Leroy’s death penalty drama based on his screenplay Toy Soldier, and a project on euthanasia. Based on Hope Perello’s screenplay, The Sacrifice, it will be directed by a young Belgian director and shot in Los Angeles.

Distribution in the US and Benelux territories is guaranteed for completed films through Cinema Libre Studio and Corsan World Sales respectively.

Diaz said: “With the financial crisis reducing the opportunities for new voices to find production companies willing to take risks on serious subjects, this partnership with Corsan marks a milestone in a new way to finance and produce small features with global impact.

“This new partnership will allow us the freedom to produce not only difficult subjects, but also new voices from Africa or Latin America, which have very few opportunities to express themselves.”