PRAGUE — The Czech Republic has submitted David Ondricek’s ’50s-set political thriller “In the Shadow of the Horse” for Oscar foreign language consideration.
Pic, which has just preemed, stars veteran Czech thesp Ivan Trojan as a work-a-day cop whose jewelry heist investigation is taken over by the state authority’s “Zionist crime” specialist, played by Sebastian Koch (“The Lives of Others”), as the Cold War currents begin to envelop his life.
Script, by Marek Epstein and Ondricek, builds on the paranoia of the period, in which the Soviets were tightening their grip daily on the then Czechoslovakia.
Project, produced by U.S.-based Ehud Bleiberg with participation from Slovakia, Poland and Isreal, has been in the works for two years.
Ondricek eschews any direct historical references, but acknowledges the darkest days of Cold War Prague were his inspiration.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will announce the five nominees for best foreign film on Jan. 10. The 85th Academy Awards ceremony takes place Feb. 24.