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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 28 January 2017
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 28 JANUARY 2017 5 NEWS Sydney’s Greek bookshop closes its doors As the only cultural meeting place for Sydney’s Greek community, the bookshop will be truly missed Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Lobster secures Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay Good news for cinephiles of Greek cinema, with Yogos Lanthimos' The Lobster having landed an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay. Co-written by Lanthimos together with Efthymis Filippou, producer Ed Guiney from Element Pictures expressed his excitement over the news. "We are so pleased that Yorgos and Efthimis' amazing and hugely original script has been recognised by the Academy," Guiney said. "It's an incredible achievement and we congratulate them and all of The Lobster team." The fantasy sci-fi film, starring Colin Farrell and Rachel Weisz, is set in a dystopian near future where single people are tracked down, arrested and transferred to a hotel, where they are obliged to find a matching mate within 45 days. If one is to fail at the task, they are transformed into an animal of their choos- ing and released into the woods. The 89th Academy Awards will be held on February 26 at the Dolby Theatre at Hollywood and Highland Center in Hollywood and will be hosted by Jimmy Kimmel. Daphne Matziaraki Oscar nominated for Best Short Documentary Another Greek, Daphne Matziaraki, has had her film 4.1 Miles selected in the Best Short Documentary category. ANASTASIA TSIRTSAKIS The famed Greek Bilingual Bookshop in Dulwich Hill is closing down, resulting in a sense of loss for Sydney's Greek community. But Eleni Elefterias, one of three volunteers who run the shop and over the years have welcomed hundreds of people through the doors, admits that they have been fighting to make ends meet for some time now. "The bookshop has been running on a voluntary basis for the last five years, and the thing is that it's reached the stage now where it's not covering its costs. We keep putting money from our own pocket and we just can't do it anymore," Eleni told Neos Kosmos. Aside from the lack of sales, the volunteer attributes part of the problem to the increasing value of the euro, resulting in high costs for the importation of books. "Even though a book would cost $30, $40 or $50 − it sounds like a lot of money - but the real price for a book in order for a bookshop to make money would be $69 to $74. We have not been running as a proper business," she says. In a bid to keep the shop alive, a number of wealthy individuals have been approached to assist with importing, but Eleni says eve- ryone sees the bookshop as a business, thus failing to understand the shop's philosophy. "They think 'ah well, we're not going to help a business trying to make money'. But the thing is we're trying to survive. We've never gotten a wage from it, we've actually used the money on different events and free things we can hold there for people," she explained. "Greeks are building restaurants here, building beautiful clubs; they're creating all sorts of things, but they're not actually creating a beautiful cultural centre." Since the news was announced, Eleni says the response has been overwhelming. With the bookshop being the only cultural events space in Sydney for Greeks, people are worried about losing a venue where they feel welcome, where they can gather with friends and make new ones. The events space, however, will continue "for as long as costs can be covered", with the continuation of Modern Greek classes and the inclusion of additional music and poetry events, and workshops for writers. Volunteers will also seek to maintain the online bookshop, but with more of a focus on books produced locally, namely by new publishing company Hellenic Theorem, headed by Vrasidas Karalis and with which Eleni is also involved. "We are going to be supporting Greek writers here and in Greece who contact us and want their work sold. So we won't be importing all general books, it'll be more selected," she said. All books will be self-funded with the assistance of fundraising and will be working closely with Greek publishers to create a pathway for distribution of books both in Australia and in Greece. Their first book is due for release this year and is a collection of stories by Greek Australian authors. But for Eleni, the closure of the bookshop cements one thing, and that's for the Greek community of Sydney to band together and step up to the community's needs. "Ideally, what's needed in Australia is that the Greek community should be supporting things like this and doing it themselves. They should be the ones importing books, offering them at cost price to Greeks; not running it as a business, but seeing it as a community service." If you would like to assist with keeping the events space open or getting Hellenic Theorem off the ground, visit www.facebook.com/bilingualbookshop and send Eleni a message. The young filmmaker captures a portrait of a Greek coast guard captain trying to save refugees crossing the Aegean Sea amid the Syrian refugee crisis. Her documentary was initially featured as a New York Times Op-Doc and won a Student Academy Award. Now it has been short-listed for an Academy Award nomination. "Two years ago at UC Berke- ley Graduate School of Journalism, my incredible mentor Dan Krauss was teaching me the basics of filmmaking," Matziaraki wrote on Facebook after the announcement. "While refugee families with their babies are still fleeing war and conflict in the most deadly ways, and while refugee children are freezing to death in camps, both Dan's short documenta- ry Extremis and 4.1 Miles are nominated for an #Oscar. I couldn't be more honored and thankful. Because this means we will get to share these extremely important stories with the world as Kyriakos Papadopoulos − the heroic captain of 4.1 Miles and his crew − will continue to find themselves in the fine line between life and death." Matziaraki is a native of Greece who relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area in 2012. After taking part in KALW's Audio Academy, she worked with Al Jazeera America, and then enrolled at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism to study documentary filmmaking. Now, she's become one of the most celebrated short documentary makers in the country. Nick ‘The Greek’ Georgoulas wins Australian Poker Hall of Fame Classic The Australian Poker Hall of Fame (HOF) Classic was action-filled this year and more packed than ever, but one specific Greek was in full swing . Six famous Hall of Fame members participated in the 2017 event: Jason Gray, Graeme Putt, Joe Cabret, Leo Boxtel, Gary Benson and Marsha Waggoner. A total of 123 players signed up for the event, resulting in a prize pool of $126,075. None of the six players made it to the nine-handed final table, which concluded well after midnight with Nick ‘The Greek’ Georgoulas coming out on top. Georgoulas defeated Xiuning Huang heads up to walk away with the mas- sive A$32,620 first-place prize, while Huang collected $22,155 as runner-up. It's the eighth tournament victory on Georgoulas' poker resume, with results going back all the way to 1998. Some say he is bound to be the new Nick ‘The Greek’ poker hall of famer, channeling Nicholas Andrea Dandolos' career. Georgoulas now has almost $285,000 in live-time cashes, according to Casino News Daily.
21 January 2017
4 February 2017