Honorary Orpheus: George Chakiris
Enjoy the Highlights video from the 11th annual Los Angeles Greek Film Festival Continue reading “2017 Highlights Video from the 11th Annual LAGFF”
Watch the 2017 Orpheus Honoree Alexander Payne Tribute Reel screened exclusively Continue reading “2017 Alexander Payne Tribute Reel”
11th annual Los Angeles Greek Film Festival 2017
11th Los Angeles Greek Film Festival
Egyptian Theatre, Hollywood | June 7-11, 2017
Over 50 films and special events spanning 5 days and nights in Hollywood.
DAY 1 | Opening Night | Wednesday, June 7
AMERIKA SQUARE (Plateia Amerikis)
Greece/UK/Germany, 2016, 86 min, West Coast Premiere
Director: Yannis Sakaridis
Amerika Square is a Square in Athens. It’s the Casablanca of our times. A triptych revealing the opposing forces of today’s humanitarian challenges. Two friends, Billy, a tattoo artist and Nakos, a “banal” Greek racist, come head to head in Amerika Square in Athens because of the survival journey of Tarek, a Syrian refugee.
Greece, 2016, 26 min, Documentary
Director/Producer: Daphne Matziaraki
A coast guard captain on a small Greek island is suddenly charged with saving thousands of refugees from drowning at sea.
Opening Night Reception in the courtyard of the Egyptian Theatre to follow the screening
Presented by Gold Patron, G.P. Kolovos & Associates and Silver Patron, Earth Friendly Products
Opening Night Reception in the courtyard of the Egyptian Theatre to follow the screening – Greek delicacies and wines by Petros
DAY 2 | Thursday, June 8
All Day/Evening Screenings
including a Tribute to iconic director Nikos Koundouros
with a Special screening of his masterpiece
THE OGRE OF ATHENS (O Drakos)
Greece, 1956, 103 min
A peaceful innocent man is mistaken for a serial ravisher and killer who looks very much like him. He finds himself on the run by everyone that knows him, and finally hides inside a nightclub owned by small crooks. In his face, they see the leader that will give them everything they desire.
DAY 3 | Friday, June 9
All Day/Evening Screenings
including a Tribute to Maria Callas
with a Special screening of
OUR OWN MARIA CALLAS (I diki mas Maria Kallas)
Greece, 2016, 95 min, West Coast Premiere, Documentary
Director/Writer: Babis Tsokas
This Maria Callas dramatized documentary is a voyage to the mythical world of Maria Callas, the soprano we all know. Her life was one with the roles she interpreted, Medea, Norma, etc. Drama rules supreme. The glory from her art only gives way to the love for life. Rejection, pain, loneliness follow. Towards the end she returns to Greece. This film required the selfless work of hundreds of volunteers, while it was filmed in Neohorion Oihalias, place of origin of Maria Callas, Meligala, Kalamata, Tripoli, Athens, New York City, Verona, Milano, Paris and the island of Scorpio.
DAY 4 | Saturday, June 10
All Day/Evening Screenings
including the CLIFFS OF FREEDOM
Actors Panel & Case Study
DAY 5 | Closing Night | Sunday, June 11
All daytime screenings
including Closing Night Film & Orpheus Awards
SON OF SOFIA (O gios tis Sofias)
Greece/France/Bulgaria, 2017,111 min, West Coast Premiere
Director/Writer: Elina Psykou
11-year-old Misha is coming from Russia to Athens during the 2004 Olympic Games to live with his mother. He does not know there is a father waiting for him. While Greece is living the Olympic dream, Misha will get violently catapulted into the adult world, riding on the dark side of his favorite fairy tales.
LAGFF 2017 Orpheus Awards ceremony with the added talent of
Demetri Martin is a standup comedian, writer, actor and director. He began doing standup comedy in New York City, where he worked as a staff writer at Late Night with Conan O’Brien. Martin became a regular performer on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. He created and starred in his own television series for Comedy Central called Important Things with Demetri Martin. He has also appeared in feature films and television shows including Ang Lee’s TAKING WOODSTOCK, Steven Soderbergh’s CONTAGION, Lake Bell’s IN A WORLD, Fox’s New Girl and Showtime’s House of Lies among others. Martin recently wrote and directed his first feature film, DEAN, which won the Founder’s Prize at the Tribeca Film Festival for best narrative American feature film, and is in theaters now.
Wet the Hippo offers a place and an infrastructure to support a widening community of performers and makers who value and encourage a shared search for the ridiculous, sincere, funny, and sublime. The group promotes a loose collection of autonomous shows, experimental in form and content, that abandon fixed rules and seek connection to a live audience.
Founder and Artistic Director of Wet The Hippo, John Gilkey, has performed internationally for more than thirty years in circus, variety, comedy clubs, theater and television. Gilkey has played a lead role in four Cirque Du Soleil productions; Quidam, Dralion, Varekai, and Iris. Gilkey’s career in circus, comedy and theater also includes creative projects with Pixar, Dragone and a whole bunch of others.
The 11th annual Orpheus Awards, honoring Oscar-winning filmmaker, Alexander Payne, will follow the screening.
Alexander Payne will receive the 2017 Orpheus Award at the 11th Annual Los Angeles Greek Film Festival. Payne was selected by the festival committee to receive this year’s honor because of his worldwide contributions to movies and his extraordinary dedication to the preservation of its history. The award will be presented as part of the Orpheus Awards ceremony following the closing night film on June 11 in Hollywood.
Presented by Platinum Patrons, Aegean Entertainment and Onasis Foundation
Closing Night Reception in the courtyard of the Egyptian Theatre to follow Orpheus Awards
Greek delicacies and wines by Petros
Earth Friendly Products Celebrates 50 Years of Green Cleaning Innovation
Gala Celebrations to be Held in Conjunction with Earth Day 2017
Earth Friendly Products, the maker of ECOS™ environmentally friendly cleaning products, is celebrating 50 years of green cleaning innovation, a significant achievement in the cleaning products industry. 2017 marks the 50th anniversary of the family-owned and –operated company, and it will celebrate this important milestone with gala celebrations at its four sustainable manufacturing facilities across the U.S. The celebrations will occur throughout the month of April in conjunction with global Earth Day celebrations, in honor of the company’s long-standing commitment to environmental protection.
Earth Friendly Products has achieved many firsts in developing safer cleaning products. The company has received many awards for its advances in safer green chemistry, including the U.S. EPA’s coveted Safer Choice Partner of the Year. In 2016, Earth Friendly Products was the first cleaning products company to use the safer ethylhexylglycerin as a preservative in its formulations, partnering with the U.S. EPA to establish it as a Safer Choice–recognized chemical.
“I’m proud to continue our company’s legacy as an eco-pioneer while making Earth Friendly Products a model for green business practices,” says Kelly Vlahakis-Hanks, president and CEO of Earth Friendly Products. “It’s important to me that we continue to lead as an American manufacturer, creating green jobs and supporting local economies. Since the beginning, our mission has been to make plant-powered cleaners that are safer for people, pets and the planet, and to do that for 50 years while supporting our employees and our communities is very rewarding.”
Earth Friendly Products is also a nationally recognized leader in corporate social responsibility, paying one of the highest minimum wages in the nation and supporting its employees with numerous family friendly benefits such as paid healthcare, sick time, and maternity and paternity leave. The company also offers its employees financial incentives to adopt green lifestyle choices, such as purchasing a lowemissions vehicle, installing solar panels, and relocating close to its facilities to reduce carbon emissions and long commutes.
“Earth Friendly Products is a model for manufacturers across the U.S. that shows you can do the right thing for customers, employees, and the planet and be successful,” says David Levine, co-founder and CEO of American Sustainable Business Council. “Their 50 years of continued growth is a testament to the fact that companies can do good and do well.”
Founded in 1967, Earth Friendly Products was launched at the dawn of the environmental movement in the same year that saw the passage of the Air Quality Act and the founding of the Environmental Defense Fund. The company was an early supporter of Earth Day, which traces its roots back to 1970.
The anniversary events will be held at Earth Friendly Products’ facilities in Parsippany, New Jersey, on April 13th; Lacey, Washington, on April 18th; Addison, Illinois, on April 21st; and the company’s headquarters in Cypress, California, on April 28th. Guests will enjoy an exciting program featuring a locally sourced organic lunch, VIP guest speakers, and the world premiere of videos honoring the company’s legacy in the green movement and its unprecedented achievements in sustainable manufacturing. VIP speakers will include Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey, Governor Bruce Rauner and Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi of Illinois, and state and local representatives at all facilities.
During its anniversary celebrations, Earth Friendly Products will present donations to its key non-profit partners at each facility, including Seattle Children’s Hospital in Washington, the Discovery Cube Museums in California, Roosevelt University in Illinois, and the American Sustainable Business Council in New Jersey. “We’re honored to have so many federal and state dignitaries, non-profit partners, and community members join us to celebrate this important milestone in our company’s history,” says Vlahakis-Hanks.
ECOS™ cleaners are produced in the U.S. in carbon neutral, water neutral, and Platinum Zero Wastecertified facilities. ECOS™ laundry detergents are among the over 100 Safer Choice-certified products made by Earth Friendly Products. The U.S. EPA’s Safer Choice program is designed to help consumer find products that are safer for human health and the environment and have superior performance. Earth Friendly Products has more Safer Choice-certified products than any other manufacturer.
About Earth Friendly Products
Family owned and operated since 1967, Earth Friendly Products is the maker of ECOS™ Laundry Detergent and over 200 other environmentally friendly products that are safer for people, pets and the planet. Made with plant-powered ingredients, ECOS™ cleaners are thoughtfully sourced, pH balanced, readily biodegradable, easily recyclable and never tested on animals. Earth Friendly Products is a primary manufacturer that makes its own products in sustainable manufacturing facilities located across the U.S. All Earth Friendly Products facilities are carbon neutral, water neutral and Zero Waste Platinum certified, saving over 53 million pounds of carbon dioxide annually and diverting over 95% of all waste from landfills. Over 100 ECOS™ products have received the coveted U.S. EPA Safer Choice certification, which means that every ingredient is the safest in its class and that the product has proven superior performance. ECOS™, Disney Baby ECOS™, ECOS for Pets! and ECOS™ Pro cleaners are available at selected major retailers throughout the U.S., in over 60 countries and online at ecos.com.
For more information about Earth Friendly Products and ECOS™ products, please visit http://www.ecos.com
“…a strange and wonderful exhibition” – The New York Times
Don’t miss this exhibition—A World of Emotions—full of ancient art and timeless feelings!
Stunning Greek masterpieces bring emotions to life in a groundbreaking exhibition, prompting questions about how we express, control, manipulate, or simulate feelings in our own society. More than 130 ancient artworks from world-renowned museums—the Acropolis Museum, British Museum, Louvre, National Archaeological Museum of Athens, Vatican Museums, and many more—open pathways to a wide world of unending, conflicting, universal emotions.
On view at the Onassis Cultural Center New York through June 24
(645 Fifth Avenue; entrance on 51st or 52nd street)
FREE guided exhibition tours every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 1:00 PM through June 24.
Public Programs for all ages
Official LAGFF 2017 Trailer – Shot, Directed, Edited and Sound Design by Araceli Lemos
Shot in Keratsini, Greece
Music by The Telestons
Thank you to Savvas, Athena and Nikos Lekidis
(Los Angeles, CA June 6 ) – The 10th Anniversary of the Los Angeles Greek Film Festival came to a close Sunday, June 5 with a screening and N. American Premiere of “Worlds Apart” and the starstudded Orpheus Awards produced by Dorothea Paschalidou and directed by Yorgos Karamihos and hosted by Mena Suvari.
In his opening remarks, Festival creative topper Aris Katopodisremarked “This 10th LAGFF is almost history, but it is also one that made history.Most films than ever, 56, most filmmakers present, 58, most North American Premieres 24, largest attendance and the belief that the future LAGFF will continue to shine, full of hope for Greek film, filmmakers and Greek culture, here in Los Angeles.”
The sold out Egyptian theatre was peppered throughout with 40 students from the Stella Adler Acting Academy dressed to honor the various eras since cinema began.
Katopodis introduced festival cofounders Ersi Danouand Angeliki Giannakopoulos. Danou thanked the many professionals including Executive Producer Alex Kalognomos and coproducer Eleni Arvaniti, the 50 volunteers and sponsors who have grown the festival to one of the premier summer events in Los Angeles. Giannakopoulos spoke to the filmmakers and the fact that when they conceived the idea for LAGFF all the festival directors in town told them they would not last four years emphasizing how wrong they were.
Kelly VlahakisHanks took the stage to give out the night’s first Jury prize the Van Vlahakis Short Film Awardto Alexander Swart’s “Stagnation.”
LAGFF’s director of development Paschalidou thanked all the sponsors for making the 10th special. She then gave out the second Jury Prize – Best Documentary to Evangelia Kranioti’s “Exotica, Erotica, Etc.”with a special mention going to Loukas Stamellos ‘ “Golden Dawn: A Personal Affair”.
Anastas Michos ASC, juror, on behalf of all the jury, gave the Best Fiction Feature Orpheus honors to Panos Karkanevatos’ “Riverbanks.”
Next up, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” star Louis Mandylorannounced the final Jury Prize for Best Performance to actress Maria Kavogiannifor her portrayal of the older love interest to J.K. Simmons in “Worlds Apart.”
The Orpheus for Audience Choicewas then awarded to Christopher Papakaliatis for his touching triptych to love affairs and closing night film “Worlds Apart.”
The International Project Discovery Awards were handed out by IPDF alumnus Paolo Marinou Blancowith honors and scholarship going to Turkishborn Nazli Elif Durlufor her project “Zuhal.” An honorable mention went to Haris Raftogiannisfor his pitch “The River”.
HBO/Cinemax’s Kary Antholisintroduced the first honoree of the evening 20th Century Fox Chairman & CEO Jim Gianopulos.
Papakaliatis then presented his film’s star J.K. Simmons, recipient of the night’s second honorary Orpheus.
The Orpheus Awards concluded five days of screenings and master classes and events for the patrons and participants of the festival. The fest began with raves from the crowd for the North American premiere of Tassos Boulmetis bittersweet “Mythopathy” introduced with a live performance by worldrenowned singing sensation Alexia Vassiliou accompanied by guitarist George Karpasitis. The opening night party which kicked off the five days of screenings, master classes, and culinary events was DJ’d by KCRW’s Chris Douridas.
HONORARY ORPHEUS AWARDS
- Jim Gianopulos, Chairman & CEO 20th Century Fox
- Academy Award ® Winner J.K. Simmons
- “Worlds Apart”
- Best Fiction Feature Film: “Riverbanks”
- Best Documentary Film: “Exotica, Erotica, Etc.”
- Best Documentary Film – Honorable Mention:
- “Golden Dawn: A Personal Affair”
- Best Short Fiction Film – Van Vlahakis Award: “Stagnation”
- Best Performance Award: Maria Kavogianni (“Worlds Apart”)
FOURTH INTERNATIONAL PROJECT DISCOVERY AWARDS
- MFI Scholarship and Aegean Award Nazli Elif Durlu for “Zuhal”
- Honorable Mention Harris Raftogiannis for “The River”
Networking Mixer – Wednesday, April 20 in West Hollywood
LAGFF Networking Mixer at E.P. & L.P. Wednesday, April 20, 6-9 p.m.
Teaching with Film: Conversation with Vasslis Loules and Cuban director Enrique Pineda Barnet
Congratulations to Nia Vardalos and the cast and crew of MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING 2 which has garnered close to $40 million at the box office. Playing on over 3,175 screens across the nation, the sequel to the record-breaking MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING (2002) unites all of the original cast members. This weekend marks the third weekend of the film’s release. For screening times and more information about the film, visit the film’s official website www.mybigfatgreekweddingmovie.com
As IPDF we have been working with Balkan feature films for three years now, and a big challenge is international distribution. Online is where a true bridge between Balkan content and an international audience can be built. We are hosting two industry roundtables this year: the first on International Distribution, where we will discuss current trends and whether there is a place for European films in the American market. The second event is about online content: a discussion with Fullscreen’s CEO George Strompolos followed by an exciting, high-energy pitching event for episodic web content, where filmmakers get to pitch to a panel of judges and in front of an audience.
On International Distribution
Saturday, June 6, 12:00 – 2:00 PM, Spielberg/Egyptian Theatre
Free event, open to the public
Many independent movies are made every year but never get to their intended audience, many independent European films never get distribution in the US – and vice versa.
Join us for a discussion with leading distributors and sales agents on the current distribution trends and how the digital age is changing the game of International Distribution.
Open Floor Pitch
George Strompolos presents his work with Fullscreen. To be followed by a high-energy web-series short pitch in front of a jury of leading web content producers. Creators have (3) minutes to pitch their ideas for episodic online content to a panel of judges and the audience. The first (15) proposals get priority (in order of submission). The others are put on a waiting list.
- Niccolo Bello
- Charles Como (Founder, Underground.net)
- Salil Mehta (President of Content Management, FOX)
- George Strompolos (CEO, Fullscreen)
Each one of the judges will select their favorite project which will receive a consultation with the judge who selected it.
DORA – Bulgaria
Director: Milko Lazarov
Writers: Milko Lazarov and Simeon Ventsislavov
Producer: Veselka Kiryakova
Production Company: Red Carpet
An elderly, famous retired actress, Dora finds herself sharing her municipal housing flat with Ivan and Yasna, a couple of young actors. Ivan’s obvious admiration for Dora and Dora’s sarcastic attitude towards Yasna creates a tense triangle between the three. Together they face a challenge that will change their lives. An intimate film about the irrevocable, one that explores the clash between the beauty of the body and the beauty of the soul.
* Previous feature film Alienation trailer
HAMARAT APARTMENT – Turkey
Director: Hüseyin Karabey
Writer: Hüseyin Karabey
Producer: Hüseyin Karabey
Production Company: Asi Film Productions
In 1970s Turkey, a group of young leftist students are fed up with the fascist undertakings of the government. They determine to accomplish a groundbreaking political act. As they struggle to start a revolution, they will begin losing their innocence along the way. Hamarat Apartment is a political thriller based on the true story of the kidnapping of Eprahim Elrom – the Israeli Consul General in Istanbul.
*Previous feature film Come to My Voice trailer
IN THE ARENA – Greece
Director: Arsenis Polymenopoulos
Writer: Dimitris Emmanouilidis and Arsenis Polymenopoulos
You can beat everything except the beast that hides inside you. The true story of a quiet, reserved family man who rises to become the best-known sports radio announcer in Thessaloniki… until his dark side takes over.
* In the Arena will be Arsenis Polymenopoulos’ feature film debut.
SATELLITES – Serbia/France
Director: Nenad Mikalacki
Writer: Jelena Marjanovic and Nenad Mikalacki
Production Company: 25 Films and Druid Film
Where I am, that is my home. I am my own home. After the playful childhood and violent teenage years spent in a Belgrade’s remote neighborhood, two friends find themselves living in Paris, where they are illegal, homesick and lost. Blaza uses his power of perception to break into Parisian apartments, and Srdjan drifts around the city in search of a normal job, discovering the world of underdogs along the way.
* Satellites will be Nenad Mikalacki’s feature film debut.
SEVENTEEN (17) – Greece
Director: Nikolas Kyritsis
Writer: Nikolas Kyritsis
Producer: Phaedra Vokali
Production Company: Marni films
A contemporary drama, 17 is a portrait of three teenagers who explore their sexual identity and place in society while their dreams collapse against harsh reality. Abandoned by his girlfriend Sofia, Zaharias struggles with his feelings for their newborn baby and Petros, Sofia’s best friend, helps him raise it. The boys find their way as an unorthodox family but when Sofia returns, their world turns upside down.
* 17 will be Nikolaos Kyritsis’ feature film debut.
THEBES – Greece/France
Director: Basile Doganis
Writer: Basile Doganis
Producer: Maria Drandaki
Production Company: Homemade Films
The Odyssey of a daredevil French reformed petty criminal in search of his Greek roots, who will learn about commitment the hard way in the ancient town of Thebes. Yanis must search through the complex underworld of hardboiled activists in a crisis-struck Greece in order to find the truth about his origins and his identity.
Thebes will be Basile Doganis’ feature film debut. His short film Citizen Day screening at the Festival.
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 3RD
IPDF CHECK IN
For IPDF Filmmakers and Experts: Check in for the 9th LAGFF Opening Night ceremony, have your red carpet picture taken, pick up your Festival Pass.
Spielberg Theater @ The Egyptian Theater, 5pm
THURSDAY, JUNE 4TH
IPDF GROUP PRESENTATION
The IPDF Filmmakers present their projects under the guidance of award winning director and writer Steven Bernstein, who will give them feedback on their story and on their pitch, as well as moderate the discussion among the group.
30 minutes/ each project (including presentation & discussion).
Spielberg Theater @ The Egyptian Theater, 10am-2pm
FRIDAY, JUNE 5TH
IPDF ONE-ON-ONE MEETINGS
The Filmmakers pitch their projects to our Experts in one-on-one meetings. A great chance to get in-depth feedback on their presentation, as well as on their projects, by industry professionals with years of experience in development, such as Matthew Takata from the Sundance Institute and Alesia Weston.
Each expert meets with all presenting teams, 30 minutes/ each project (including presentation & detailed notes).
Spielberg Theater @ The Egyptian Theater, 12pm-3pm
IPDF SCREENPLAY FEEDBACK
Screenwriting Experts and the Selection Committee of the 2015 IPDF dedicate this afternoon to meeting with the Filmmakers to discuss their stories and screenplays.
Spielberg Theater @ The Egyptian Theater, 3pm-6pm
SATURDAY, JUNE 6TH
INDUSTRY ROUNDTABLE “INTERNATIONAL DISTRIBUTION”
Many independent movies are made every year but never get to their intended audience, many independent European films never get distribution in the US – and vice versa. Join us for a discussion with leading distributors and sales agents on the current distribution trends and how the digital age is changing the game of International Distribution.
Spielberg Theater @ The Egyptian Theater, 12pm-2pm
OPEN FLOOR PITCH
George Strompolos presents his work with Fullscreen. To be followed by a high-energy web-series short pitch in front of a jury of leading web content producers.
SUBMISSION REQUIRED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PITCH
Spielberg Theater @ The Egyptian Theater, 3pm-5pm
SUNDAY, JUNE 7TH
IPDF FINAL PRESENTATION TO PANEL
The Final Presentation is the culmination of our intensive 4-day workshop. The IPDF Filmmakers, having gathered feedback and advice, will now present their projects to a panel of leading industry professionals specializing in International Independent Cinema. Each presentation will last 20 minutes, including presentation, feedback and discussion. After that, the Panel will deliberate to determine the winner of the Aegean Award that will be presented during the Closing Night Ceremony.
Spielberg Theater @ The Egyptian Theater, 10.30am-2.30pm
Highlights from the 8th Los Angeles Greek Film Festival at the Egyptian Theatre, Hollywood.