South Tyrol provides script development funding

ROME — Italo helmer Giuseppe Tornatore is in early stages on “The Best Offer,” an unconventional romancer with an Alpine setting being developed with coin from the new BLS South Tyrol — Alto Adige film fund.

Pic, being produced by Rome shingle Paco Cinematografica, has tapped into script development funding from BLS. The org is located in South Tyrol, the autonomous Alpine province at Italy’s northernmost point, bordering with Austria, which is becoming a hotspot for Central European shoots.

Tornatore also has big-budget epic “Leningrad” in development.

BLS is providing Tornatore Euros 50,000 ($70,000) to adapt his script for “The Best Offer,” which is about a loveless elderly man who intersects with an astute young man and a mysterious woman in a South Tyrol setting.

Launched last year, the BLS film fund disposes of $7 million yearly with a $2.1 million cap per project. So far, it has supported six projects in 2010, and 19 in 2011, proving popular with Italian, German and Austrian producers.

“Our location and the fact that we are bilingual (Italian and German) make us the ideal co-production partner between Italy and German-speaking countries,” boasted BLS film fund topper Christiana Wertz during a presentation at the Rome Film Festival.

Pics that have tapped into BLS to date include Fandango’s “Diaz — Don’t Clean Up This Blood,” helmed by Daniele Vicari, and Austrian helmer Ernst Gossner’s “Monte Piano” from Austria’s Sigma shingle.

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