M-Appeal debuts label with gay zombie film

'L.A. Zombie' launches Berlin-based Raspberry & Cream

COLOGNE, Germany -- Berlin world sales outfit M-Appeal is launching a specialty label Raspberry & Cream for titles outside the art house mainstream, kicking off with Bruce La Bruce's horror/gay porn mash up "L.A. Zombie."

The new feature from the controversial Canadian director features adult film star Francois Sagat as an alien zombie who screws dead men back to life. The soft-core version of "L.A. Zombie" will screen at the Locarno Film Festival (Aug. 4-14).

M-Appeal's managing director Maren Kroymann says the R'n'C label will focus on more "extreme and radical" films including genre titles. Raspberry & Cream won't be solely genre-based but the approach is similar to ventures by several world sales agents including Celluloid Dreams, whose Celluloid Nightmares shingle handles horror titles and Jinga Films' genre brand UXB (Unexploded Bomb).

Kroymann says the trend is in reaction to problems in the traditional art house market, where television revenues are shrinking and fewer titles take a larger piece of the total boxoffice.

"Traditional art house has become a very unpredictable niche, either a film works or it doesn't," Kroymann said.

Whether gay zombies is a better financial bet remains to be seen.