See the trailer for Showmax's Glasshouse, screening at North America's biggest genre film festival

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Still from Showmax's Glasshouse.
Still from Showmax's Glasshouse.
Photo: Showmax
  • Showmax's Glasshouse has been selected for the 25th Fantasia Internation Film Festival in Canada.
  • The festival will run from 5 to 25 August.
  • The film is set after The Shred - an airborne dementia - that leaves humanity roaming like lost and dangerous animals, unable to remember who they are. A family is confined to their airtight glasshouse to survive until they're seduced by a mysterious stranger.

Showmax film Glasshouse has been selected for the 25th Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal, Canada – North America's biggest genre film festival.

Glasshouse is set after The Shred - an airborne dementia - that leaves humanity roaming like lost and dangerous animals, unable to remember who they are. Confined to their airtight glasshouse, a family does what they must to survive until the sisters are seduced by a stranger who upsets the family's rituals, unearthing a past they have tried to bury.

The film stars Jessica Alexander (The Little Mermaid) and newcomer Anja Taljaard as the sisters, Bee and Evie, opposite Hilton Pelser (Moffie, Dangerous Liaisons) as The Stranger. Adrienne Pearce, Kitty Harris and Brent Vermeulen also star in the film.


"Sensual and savage, Glasshouse weaves aspects of dystopian science fiction with notes of folk horror and perverse, brooding, Gothic melodrama to craft a taught existential tale that ultimately explores the importance of storytelling and memory," says Fantasia.

The festival will run from 5-25 August 2021.

The spooky yet sexy post-pandemic love triangle, Glasshouse, is produced by Greig Buckle through Local Motion Pictures, while the feature film is the directorial debut of Kelsey Egan (Trackers) who co-wrote the screenplay with Emma Lungiswa de Wet (Munki and Trunk).

"I've been working towards directing features since I made my first short back in 2008, so to end up directing my first film in 2020 of all years feels like some form of dramatic irony," says Kelsey. "To shoot this intimate post-apocalyptic fable during the pandemic was a surreal experience."

DoP Justus de Jager (an Africa Movie Academy Award nominee for Siembamba) shot Glasshouse at The Pearson Conservatory, a Victorian glasshouse marooned in the Eastern Cape since 1881. Emma calls the national monument, which she remembers from childhood, "the perfect setting for a story about memory: a colonial relic at once fragile and persistent".

Kelsey adds that Glasshouse "explores two opposing coping mechanisms to trauma: holding tightly to the past as a form of preservation, and wilful forgetting".

"Glasshouse is a claustrophobic, thought-provoking story of family survival and buried secrets," says Candice Fangueiro, head of content at Showmax. "We're delighted the film is having its world premiere at Fantasia, the latest in a string of coups for South African films this year, like Moffie's BAFTA nomination, Five Tiger's selection for Sundance, Gaia winning the ZEISS Cinematography Award at SXSW, and This Is Not A Burial, It's A Resurrection being ranked fourth on Metacritic's list of the best-reviewed films of 2021 so far."

This October, Glasshouse will release as a Cinema Premiere on BoxOffice by DStv and will be available to rent on PVRs only in South Africa, as well as in countries on the African continent where BoxOffice is available. Glasshouse will be available to stream on Showmax from February 2022.  

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