Greek cinema has made a splash on the red carpet of the 75h annual Cannes Film Festival, as a total of five films that were either filmed in Greece or made by Greeks were entered into the festival.
This is one of the largest numbers of Greek films that have been presented at Cannes in many years, and it’s just one of many signs that Greek cinema is making a name for itself on the world stage.
In recent years, Greece has become a destination for filming major motion pictures. World renowned director David Cronenberg recently filmed his entire work Crimes of the Future, starring Kristen Stewart, Viggo Mortensen, and Lea Seydoux, in Greece.
The horror film features shots of Athens and the areas surrounding the Greek capital, and many crew members who worked on the film are Greek.
Another film featured in the festival that has links to Greece is Triangle of Sadness, by Ruben Ostlund, which was shot in Evia and received an eight-minute standing ovation at the festival, as well as Burning Days, by Emin Alper, which was produced by a Greek and Turkish team.
The works of two Greek filmmakers, Panos Koutras with Dodo and Evi Kalokiropoulou with her short film On Xerxes’ Throne, are also on the lineup at the Cannes Film Festival this year.
Greek films fill Cannes Film Festival lineup
To many film lovers, this information may not come as a total surprise. Greek cinema has recently become prominent in the world of international film.
The works of Greek director Yorgos Lanthimos have received particular acclaim. Lanthimos is a father of “Greek Weird Wave,” a genre which includes films that feature absurdist dialogues and often solitary, isolated protagonists who navigate through real-world circumstances that seem to be slightly “off.”
Lanthimos’s most recent film, Bleat, a short featuring Hollywood star Emma Stone, was filmed on the Greek island of Tinos.
There is no lack of talented filmmakers in Greece, but due to the economic crisis the country faced, these artists need support.
The Greek Film Center, a state-run body comprised of public and private organizations aimed at supporting Greek filmmakers, is one of the key players in revitalizing Greek cinema.
“Greece is a small country, and it’s not a rich country. So the talent we want to support is always far greater than the budget we have…But Greek cinema is once again in a position of growth,” Athena Kalkopoulou, who works for the Greek Film Center, stated to The Hollywood Reporter.
The Center was founded in 1970 and is governed by the Greek Ministry of Culture. Since its foundation, the Greek Film Center has helped in the creation of nearly 1,000 films, 86 of which were produced in the past two years alone.