Hannover Leasing, financier of two parts of The Lord Of The Rings trilogy, is set to board The Bourne Supremacy, Universal Studios' sequel to its box-office success The Bourne Identity.

Backing for the film is earmarked to come from Hannover's new media fund, Montranus Beteiligungs GmbH & Co Verwaltungs KG, worth at least Euros 228m.

As part of a new approach, the fund will create a holding company called Motion Picture Leonie Beteiligungs GmbH & Co. KG which, in turn, will have six single-purpose production companies - Jota, Kappa, Lambda, Omikron, Sigma, and Theta - set up to develop and produce feature film projects shortlisted by the fund.

According to the fund prospectus, four Universal projects have so far been shortlisted for consideration by the investors:

- The Bourne Supremacy, dir: Paul Greengrass (Theta)
- The Interpreter, dir: Sydney Pollack (Jota)
- The Skeleton Key, dir: Iain Softley, (Kappa)
- Synergy, dir: Paul Weitz, (Lamda)

The Montranus fund prospectus has called on investors to decide which of the proposed projects should be produced at a meeting on December 17.

The move follows the revision to Germany's Media Ruling (ScreenDaily.com, August 2003) which requires that a fund's investors have direct influence on the selection of the projects to be produced.

The prospectus says: "All of the investors are urgently recommended to take part in the meeting either personally, via the Internet or through a seconded representative. Information and documents which are needed in connection with the voting (e.g. agenda, comprehensive material concerning the film projects, motions) will be distributed at the shareholders meeting and published in good time on the Internet."

However, according to one industry insider, "it remains to be seen whether the German tax authority will accept this fund structure since The Bourne Supremacy, for one, will have already begun shooting before the shareholders meeting in December."

Principal photography has begun in Russia on the sequel starring Matt Damon, Franka Potente, Brian Cox and Julia Stiles and will move in the next few weeks to Studio Babelsberg.

To date, Hannover Leasing has initiated and placed ten media funds in the market with an overall investment volume of Euros 993m.