Morena cooking

'Che' producer ready for next round of pics

Spanish production house Morena Films has announced a string of new projects just ahead of its "Che" world premiere Wednesday, including David Pinillos' directorial debut, "Bon Appetit," and Paco Cabezas' "Neon Flesh."

Two of Europe's hottest up-and-coming actors, Unax Ugalde ("Che") and Nora Tschirner ("Rabbit Without Ears"), are teaming in Pinillos' romantic comedy "Appetit."

"Appetit" revolves around three cooks from different European countries who share their passion for cooking in a Swiss avant-garde restaurant.

Morena and Orio Produkzioak from Spain, Egoli Tossell from Germany and Zodiac Pictures from Switzerland co-produce the €3 million ($4.7 million) film that Beta Cinema is selling internationally and Eurimages is supporting. The picture, which will film in all three countries, begins an eight-week shoot in October.

Mandarin Films has thrown its French clout into Morena's next project, "Neon Flesh," a fast-paced comedy.

The €3.6 million ($5.6 million) "Flesh" follows Cabezas' cult horror film "The Appeared," set to be released by IFC in the U.S. ThinkFilm sold Cabeza's directorial debut — an official selection at Edinburgh this summer — to more than 20 territories.

"We're very happy to continue our working relationship with Mandarin, especially since this is a clear sign that if you have a talented director, horror is not the only Spanish-language genre that can travel across borders," Morena Films producer Juan Gordon said.

Victoria Abril and Oscar Jaenada star in the Spanish-language film, which will shoot for 10 weeks in November.

Sweden's Hepp Films and Film I Vast also are co-producing the film, along with Spain's Jaleo Films, De Palacio, Vaca Films and Oberon Cinematografica.

"Flesh" centers on a 22-year-old hustler-turned-aspiring entrepreneur who tries to put together a brothel in one month, hoping for his mother's respect. With the help of his two useless buddies, he has to map out a business plan, one that pushes him into a host of hilarious situations. (partialdiff)