A South African Zombie film is going to Hollywood!

Because Zombies have feelings too!


Johannesburg, South Africa – The team behind Life’s a Drag, a new Zombie film, is thrilled to announce that their dark comedy short film will be screening in competition at the Oscar-Qualifying HollyShorts Film Festival. The annual festival saw over six-thousand submissions for their landmark 15th Anniversary and will take place between August 8 – August 17, 2019, at the historic TCL Chinese Theatres in Hollywood, California.

“It’s an honour to be selected as the only South African short film in this prestigious festival,” said Kate D’hotman, the film’s writer-director.

“It’s been a life-long dream to go to Hollywood, and it’s coming true! This really is “the little film that could” – a passion project that we created for the sheer love of filmmaking. I’m a big believer in the power of comedy, in being able to laugh at ourselves.”

“I’m so grateful to everyone who gave their time and resources to this project – there’s no way we could’ve done this without every one of them. The cast and crew banded together and worked tirelessly to make this film possible because we all believed in the story. At the end of the day, that’s what it all comes down to… the story.”

Life’s a Drag follows the story of a depressed zombie named Bob. He used to be cool. He used to have groupies. He used to have all his body parts. Now, although the undead and the living have reached a truce, Bob is finding it hard to adjust as a Zombie. Life after death just isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. He’s in a dead-end job working for a narcissist, and he hasn’t been laid since before the Apocalypse. Up until now, he’s played by the rules, but Bob is reaching his breaking point, and he’s about to lose his temper…

Life’s a Drag offers a hilarious re-imagining of a world in the grip of a zombie apocalypse. The film features performances by Damon Berry (Black Butterflies, My Father’s War), Joe Vaz (Black Sails, Good Omens), Garth Breytenbach (Beyond the River, Troy: Fall of a City) and Hlubi Mboya (Isidingo, The Docket).

The Zombie short film, affectionately dubbed a “zom-com” by its makers, has done well in its short time on the festival circuit to date. In May, it won the SundanceTV shorts Jury Prize and had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival: London. It went on to get Official Selection at Atlanta Shortsfest, Women’s Comedy Film Festival (Atlanta), Jozi Film Fest and now, HollyShorts. Kate D’hotman, the film’s writer-director, has also been nominated for Best International Director by the Women’s Comedy Film Festival.

“We’re really happy about the success of the film so far, and we are excited to see where this wild ride takes us! We made the film on a shoestring budget, everyone pitching in their time, skills and resources to make it happen,” Kate D’hotman said. 

“It’s quite an expensive exercise, making a film, and to my surprise, I’ve found that marketing it, can be even more so. The submission fees to festivals alone have set us back over R25 000. Getting into such a big short film festival as HollyShorts is amazing, but we can only leverage the opportunity by actually attending. It’s the best way to network, pitch other film ideas and forge relationships with movers and shakers in Hollywood and internationally,” she said.

The trip to Los Angeles, however, isn’t cheap.

“I didn’t think I’d be able to go; I was just happy to be selected,” Kate said. But her parents surprised her by contributing towards the plane ticket to go to Hollywood. “I couldn’t believe it. When I got the message, I burst into tears!” she said.

“It feels surreal; I have to pinch myself on a daily basis! I’m so grateful.” Kate said.

If anyone is going to be in Los Angeles on the 13th of August, they can catch “Life’s a Drag” at 2.30 p.m. at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood.

Over 400 films will play throughout the 10-day festival. Winners will be announced on Saturday, August 17th at the Harmony Gold Theater in Los Angeles, with the three Oscar-qualifying categories being Best Short Film, Best Live Action, and Best Animation Short. Last year’s Best Short Film “Skin” went on to win the 2019 Academy Award® for Best Live Action Short.

For tickets and the complete schedule, please visit: hollyshorts.com

Sources: Life’s a Drag 
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Brent Lindeque is the founder and man in charge at Good Things Guy.

Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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