Munich-based media fund VIP Group boarded its first local German-language project, co-producing the latest feature film with German comic Otto Waalkes, Sieben Zwerge - Maenner Allein Im Wald (Seven Dwarves - Men Along In The Forest), directed by Sven Unterwaldt.

The comedy, which is currently being shot in the Cologne MMC Studios, is being produced with Waalkes' own production outfit Zipfelmuetzenfilm, Universal Pictuers Germany, MMC Independent and Rialto Film with backing from Filmstiftung NRW, FFF Bayern and the German Federal Film Board. Telepool has picked up the German TV rights for the send up of fairytale stories and UIP will release the film in German cinemas before Christmas 2004.

VIP is also a co-producer on the latest Marvel Comics adaptation The Punisher, directed by Jonathan Hensleigh.