It was a full house at the opening of this year’s Greek Film Festival at Sydney’s Palace Norton Street Cinema on Thursday, October 19, as enthusiastic crowds gathered to enjoy a spectacle of Greek cinema.
Running from October 19 to October 29, this year’s Greek Film Festival in Sydney is presented by the Greek Festival of Sydney and the Greek Orthodox Community of NSW (GOCNSW), proudly supported by Bank of Sydney. The Greek Herald is a proud national media partner for the festival.
On opening night, cinemagoers enjoyed a captivating screening of Asimina Proedrou’s Oscar-nominated film Behind the Haystacks. The multi-award-winning film provided a heartfelt portrayal of a Greek family navigating the challenging landscapes of the 2015 refugee crisis.
Before the screening, audience members were welcomed to the Greek Film Festival by the Chair of the Greek Festival of Sydney, Nia Karteris. Ms Karteris thanked all the official guests in attendance from the Greek and wider community, as well as the festival’s sponsors and the organising committee, including Events Coordinator Chryssa Karagiannidou.
President of the GOCNSW, Harry Danalis, also spoke on the night and said the Community is proud to be presenting the film festival’s upcoming program, which includes 15 award-winning feature films, 8 documentaries and the 11th Student Film Festival.
“We are able to experience a big part of Greece through these films and documentaries and keep us in touch with both our history and our culture,” Mr Danalis said.
“That is important because as you see, the audiences that we attract are not what we would call a traditional audience to Greek events. They are a younger generation that many times don’t follow other events in the Greek calendar but they do come together when we have cultural events like the Greek Film Festival. So, it’s important for us, for our culture, for our children and of course, it is important for our language to continue to develop.”
Last to speak was the Consul General of Greece in Sydney, Yannis Mallikourtis, who praised the organisers of the Greek Film Festival for offering a program that promotes Greek contemporary culture and values.
“You have created a program which is multi-dimensional, multi-faceted. It has a variety of films, with very important documentaries on Venizelos, on the Greek South African activist George Bizos and so many other issues of great importance,” Mr Mallikourtis said.
The Greek Film Festival in Sydney returns to Leichhardt’s Palace Norton Street Cinema from 19 to 29 October 2023. For more details visit: https://greekfilmfestival.com.au/sydney.
*All photos copyright The Greek Herald / Andriana Simos.