Saturday April 25, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
14o C
09o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Relaunch of Ilion Cinema receives a warm welcome at Amerikis Sq

By Dimitris Rigopoulos

When a landmark of the Greek cultural scene like the Ilion Cinema reopens in a part of the capital that most people had more or less given up on, there is good reason to feel optimistic that a turnaround could be on its way.

The relaunch of the Ilion on Trias Street near Amerikis Square is one more move, along with the opening of new cultural and art spaces, indicating that the neighborhoods along Patission Street are making a comeback after nearly a decade of decline.

The Ilion Cinema reopened its doors to the public on October 11 on the initiative of its new owner, Fotis Papageorgiou. Over a month later, he has not regretted the decision and speaks with enthusiasm about the response of the public to the relaunch.

The time of hardship for Patission is over, he told Kathimerini in a determined tone. It is time that we give back what we took.

Papageorgiou is especially warm when talking about the people who live around Amerikis Square and constitute the cinemas most loyal patrons.

These are people with dignity and at some point, the lights just went out for them, Papageorgiou said of the neglect the neighborhood has suffered. This cant go on.

The response to the relaunch of the Ilion of people in the neighborhood and cinema-goers from further afield has been better than expected, according to Papageorgiou.

The people wanted the Ilion, wanted it to be open, and not just because they wanted to watch movies, but because they needed it to be a part of their cultural and social life.

The Ilion is not just another cinema that stood among so many others in the Patission Street stretch, which was renowned for its cultural venues. It was smaller than the more commercial theaters in the area such as Radio City, Attica and Aello, but had a more eclectic screening program that struck a perfect balance between good-quality mainstream fare and art-house selections. The Ilion Cinema has an identity, but this was not enough to carry it through more than a decade of urban decline and neglect.

Despite the efforts of the movie theaters previous management, the Ilion was forced to close down last year after a lengthy period of being unable to afford first releases.

For Papageorgiou, the role of cinema manager is a new one, even though he has significant experience in the broader movie industry from working as a distribution director at Spentzos and knows the quirks of the Greek market. The screening choices he has made since relaunching the Ilion appear to have met with the approval of its audience. Even the neon sign he decided to put back up in the entrance has been a success.

According to Papageorgiou, the focus of the screening program will continue to be on art-house films with a selection of quality big-budget films also thrown in for good measure. He is also planning to erect a small stage that will host live music and theater performances.

The biggest plus for Papageorgiou, however, is how far the neighborhood has come in the past year in terms of safety.

It is nothing like it was last year and the year before that. You can walk around freely at night; theres plenty of light in the street and no one to bother you.

ekathimerini.com , Saturday November 17, 2012 (17:59)  
Strangers to Athens depict their impressions of the city
Stathis Livathinos appointed new National Theater artistic director
Niarchos center starts to take shape
Fanny Ardant: I need to love, not to be loved
INTERVIEW
Our troubled democracies and how to fix them
At many points during the testing years of the euro crisis, commentators in Greece and other parts of Europe have lamented the absence of true leaders: politicians with vision who are able s...
Cyber-commuting from Petralona, Athens, to Manhattan, NYC
Despina did not get March 25 off for Greek Independence Day, but she wont work on July 4 as she is employed by a major US credit management firm. Only she doesnt live in Manhattan, where t...
Inside Community
Inside Gastronomy
Inside Travel
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
RECENT NEWS
1. FM warns against a lose-lose situation [Update]
2. PM tries to appease mayors, regional governors over cash bill
3. Poll: Large majority of Greeks want compromise with lenders
4. Police rescue 69 migrants from Evros River
5. Thessaloniki nanny denies abusing toddler
6. Cigarette-smuggling ring arrested in northern Greece
more news
Today
This Week
1. Five years ago
2. Greece not playing a game of chicken on debt
3. Slippery slope
4. Poll: Large majority of Greeks want compromise with lenders
5. PM tries to appease mayors, regional governors over cash bill
6. FM warns against a lose-lose situation [Update]
Today
This Week
1. Quarantine for Greek bank subsidiaries in neighboring countries
2. Greek government's popularity takes a hit as talks drag on
3. Putting off payments led to Q1 budget primary surplus
4. Obama calls for flexibility in Greek reform talks in brief exchange with Varoufakis
5. It's up to the Greek government to ensure deal with lenders, says ECB's Coeure
6. Europe's collision course with Greece
Find us ...
... on
Twitter
... on Facebook
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.