Local Release

(Variety) Picture Tree Intl. Debuts Trailer for Austrian Horror Movie ‘Smother’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Berlin-based sales agency Picture Tree Intl. has debuted the trailer (below) for Austrian horror movie “Smother” by up-and-coming director Achmed Abdel-Salam.

The film centers on Michi, a young mother and former alcoholic. After the sudden death of her estranged father, she decides to stay in the inherited summer house for a few days with her small daughter Hanna, hoping to regain the motherly trust she lost.

During the first night, long repressed memories of her childhood overshadowed by her mother’s suicide start to haunt her. Trying to numb herself again with alcohol only drives her daughter Hanna further away and accelerates Michi’s paranoid state. When her demons also start to threaten her daughter, Michi must finally confront them to save her.

The Glitter and Doom production is tentatively set for a local theatrical release in early 2023.

The film is one of several new titles on Picture Tree’s AFM slate. These include “A Whole Life” by Hans Steinbichler, based on the best-selling novel by Robert Seethaler, and adapted for the screen by Ulrich Limmer, whose credits include Oscar nominee “Schtonk.”

Another highlight is the historical biopic “Alma & Oskar” by Dieter Berner (“Egon Schiele: Death and the Maiden”), starring Emily Cox (“The Last Kingdom”), which explores the turbulent relationship between the Viennese society grand dame Alma Mahler, and the expressionist artist and enfant terrible Oskar Kokoschka.

PTI is also presenting “The Chambermaid” by Mariana Čengel Solčanská. The period drama captures a time of social and political disruption around World War I, and the collapse of the Austria-Hungary empire in Eastern Europe. Ushering in a new era, these changes are paralleled by an unconventional love story of two girls born in the same year but into two different social worlds.

Also premiering in the market will be Iranian genre crossover “Without Her,” about a woman’s illusion of individual choice and the pressures to adapt or be replaced by the forces that choose for you. Directed by Arian Vazirdaftari, “Without Her” premiered at the Venice and Toronto film festivals.

Another market premiere is the Canadian feature “This Place,” featuring up-and-coming star Devery Jacobs, who was in the cast of “The Residents,” and is confirmed for Marvel’s upcoming film “Echo.”

“This Place” celebrated its festival world premiere in Toronto, and tells the story of two young women falling in love and both living in the liminal space between cultures, displaced both at home and abroad.

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