German distributor Universum Film has joined forces with UK-based producer Paul Trijbits of Ruby Films for the development of an adaptation of Marina Lewycka's A Short History Of Tractors In Ukrainian.

The culture clash comedy about a dysfunctional Ukranian family living in Peterborough in the 1990s was a bestseller in the UK and Germany.

Universum Film's managing director Tania Reichert-Facilides told ScreenDaily that the company is also involved in the development of a children's animation feature based on the character Sir Rusty (Ritter Rost). This will continue its successful collaboration with Munich-based production house Caligari Film after co-producing The Moonbeam Bear as well as Princess Lillifee which will be released theatrically on April 1

Universum has also boarded a German nature documentary entitled Serengeti after having such a major box-office success last year with the BBC nature feature film Earth which sold more than 3.7m tickets in Germany.