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2nd Annual Los Angeles Greek Film Festival


June 25th - 29th


20th Century Fox's Newly Restored ZORBA THE GREEK Opens Festival

The US Premiere of LITTLE GREEK GODFATHER to Close Festival

The Los Angeles Greek Film Festival (LAGFF) kicks off June 25th at the Egyptian Theater this year with a first-time screening of a newly restored print of ZORBA THE GREEK directed by Michael Cacoyannis, courtesy of 20th Century Fox. Other highlights from this year's Festival will include panel discussions, a screening of the feature film ALTER EGO, starring Greece's well-known pop star and prized Eurovision finalist Sakis Rouvas in his debut performance as an actor, a Tribute Night Gala (to be announced on May 27), and the US premiere of the Closing Night film LITTLE GREEK GODFATHER which is based on a short story written by Nicholas Papandreaou, son of Andreas Papandreou, Greece's former Prime Minister, and directed by Olga Malea.

ZORBA THE GREEK, originally released in 1964, is based on the novel by Nikos Kazantzaki . Anthony Quinn starred as Alexis Zorbas, an open-hearted peasant whose character single-handedly became a symbol of the Mediterranean passion. His encounter with a young and pent-up English writer (Alan Bates) leads to unforgettable lessons in love of life. The film was shot on the island of Crete, and the musical theme, “Sirtaki”, by Mikis

Theodorakis became identified with traditional Greek music and dance even though it was composed specifically for the film. ZORBA THE GREEK won three Academy Awards: Lila Kedrova won for Best Supporting Actress, Vassilis Fotopoulos won for Art Direction (Black-and-White) and Walter Lassally won for Cinematography and Anthony Quinn received a nomination for Best Actor in a Leading Role. Michael Cacoyannis received three nominations for Best Picture, Director and Writing (Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium).

On Saturday morning, June 28th, at the Linwood Dunn Theater, LAGFF will host a screenwriting panel discussion with jury members Executive Producer of MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE III Stratton Leopold, HBO Senior Vice President - Miniseries Kary Antholis, and Columbia University professor Christina Lazaridi.

"Over 70 scripts from Greek writers from around the world were submitted to compete," comments the energetic Angeliki Giannakopoulos, Festival, Sponsorship and Scriptwriting Director. "This is a rare opportunity for Greek writers to get their voices heard here in Hollywood, and we are very excited about introducing the competition to this year's Festival." The winner will have an opportunity to attend pitch meetings to industry professionals and will receive a New Vision Award during the Closing Night Ceremonies.

LITTLE GREEK GODFATHER will have its US premiere as the LAGFF Closing Night Gala presentation on Sunday, June 29, 2008. The movie is based on an autobiographical short story by Nicholas Papandreou, established writer and son of former Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou, who also co-wrote the screenplay with director Olga Malea. The film is set in the summer of 1963, when Alex, the 12-year-old son of a famous Greek politician, is sent to the island of Crete to baptize the baby of Mr. Panagakis, a local party supporter of Alex's father's election campaign. The boy tries very hard to stand in for his father and be the good son, but because of his friendship with Panos, the rebellious son of Mr. Panagakis, he has ever-increasing doubts about his new role as a young politician. On the island, he discovers life's priorities and slowly accepts the roots of his rich heritage.

The Closing Night Ceremonies (location TBD) take place on Sunday June 29th, where LAGFF will present the Orpheus Awards to the filmmakers for Best Dramatic Feature, Best Documentary, Best Short Film, Best Direction, and Audience Choice.

The five-day Festival kicks-off at the Egyptian Theatre on June 25th and continues to the Academy’s Pickford Center 286-seat, state-of-the-art Linwood Dunn Theater and the Spielberg Theatre at the Egyptian in Hollywood from June 26th through June 29th, "We are pleased with this year's rich and diverse program. We have over 30 features, documentaries and shorts in the program. Seven of them are made by Greek filmmakers from outside of Greece, two are centered around a Greek subject and the rest are Greek productions," says the enthusiastic Ersi Danou, Festival and Programming Director.

The Linwood Dunn Theater is located at 1313 Vine Street in Hollywood. Free parking is available through the entrance on Homewood Avenue (one block north of Fountain Avenue). The Spielberg Theatre at the Egyptian is located at 6712 Hollywood Blvd in Hollywood.

Tickets go on sale May 30th. For more information please visit LA or call (818) 728-0720.



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