Meirelles in M’max pix mix

Brazilian helmer reading 6 scripts, one an English-lingo prod'n

RIO DE JANEIRO — Brazilian helmer Fernando Meirelles is negotiating a two-feature deal with Miramax, which is distribbing his soph pic “City of God” with the Wild Bunch.

“City of God” bowed at the Cannes Film Festival this year to critical acclaim.

Miramax has given Meirelles six scripts to read: One of the projects will be an English-lingo production, skedded to lense next year and another will be a Brazilian film produced by Meirelles’ production shingle O2.

“I am looking for a story with universal appeal. I do not want to film an all-American story, because my knowledge of U.S. culture is limited to what I have seen in movies,” Meirelles told Daily Variety.

Miramax is paying for the script development of “Intolerance, the Sequel,” a working title that refers to the D.W. Griffith classic, but has yet to decide whether it will come on as co-producer. The story focuses on globalization and Meirelles plans to shoot in five countries and five languages, aiming to start production in 2004.

“It is a difficult production, but I’m very enthusiastic about it,” he said. Meirelles started as an indie TV producer in the ’80s.

He opened O2 in the early ’90s with two partners, and is now Brazil’s leading producer of commercials. His first feature, “Maids,” bowed in 2000.

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