Two short films about the Holocaust in Greece — produced by Americans and supported in great part by the New York City-based Greek America Foundation — screened in Athens, Greece on the campus of the Hellenic American University on December 18.
The screenings, under the auspices of Greece’s Jewish Community, shared largely unknown stories about the Holocaust in Greece. A packed theater included Rabbi Gabriel Negrin, the President of Hellenic American University Mr. Leonidas Koskos, Archimandrite Damaskinos Fylaktos and representatives from the Embassy of Israel.
According to Gregory Pappas, who served as a producer on both projects, “These stories tell important stories and carry with them a tremendous historical burden — they are two films about the central core of the Greek experience, which is freedom. One film shares freedom, through life. The other with death.”
Pappas and Steven Priovolos, the producer of “Life Will Smile” spoke after the screening and answered audience questions.
“Life Will Smile” is a compelling 40-minute documentary that tells the story of the complete survival of Europe’s only Jewish community during the Holocaust on the Greek island of Zakynthos. The film is narrated by Greek-Jewish survivor Haim Konstantini.
Watch the trailer
Eleftheromania is a 20-minute short starring Oscar-winning actor Olympia Dukakis that recounts the true story of Greek prisoners in Auschwitz who were faced with a difficult ultimatum by the Nazis. Music plays a unique role in the film and features the closing title song which was recorded by Glykeria.
Watch the trailer
The screenings were organized in the theater of the Hellenic American University in Athens and were held to coincide with the exhibition “The Hour of Greece” which tells the story of Greece’s role during World War II through the American lens.
Both films are available for screenings via the Greek America Foundation.
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