Our next spotlight filmmaker understands the value of quality over quantity. With only a handful of films under his belt yet dozens of awards and critical acclaim, Yorgos Lanthimos is one of the most talented filmmakers hailing from Greece.
Lanthimos’ experience in directing began in the 90s when he directed a series of videos for Greek dance-theater companies. From there, he went on to direct a large number of TV commercials, music videos, short films and experimental theater plays. He was even a part of the creative team for the opening and closing ceremonies of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games.
His first feature film to achieve prominence was the experimental film, KINETTA (2005). It looks at a police officer, store clerk and hotel maid investigating murders in the Greek resort town of Kinetta. The film was chosen to play at the Toronto International Film Festival and the Berlin International Film Festival. It was also nominated for the Golden Alexander award at the 2006 Thessaloniki Film Festival.His following and most critically acclaimed film to date is DOGTOOTH (2009). The film centres on parents who keep their children at home and distant from the rest of the world, even through to the children’s adolescence. Things start to unravel when a woman from the outside, hired by the father to have sexual intercourse with the son, starts influencing the whole family. Not only did the film win the Un Certain Regard prize at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival, but it was also nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the 83rd Academy Awards.
His latest film, ALPS (2011), looks at a group of people who help grieving individuals through their business that impersonates recently deceased loved ones. Lanthimos describes this film as the opposite of his last – DOGTOOTH is the story of a person who tries to escape a fictitious world, whereas ALPS is about a person who tries to enter a fabricated world. It was nominated for a Golden Lion and won the Golden Osella for Best Screenplay at the 2011 Venice Film Festival.
After four years of waiting, his next feature film, THE LOBSTER (2015) is coming out this year. We are very excited to see this new film; we’re sure that it’s going to be amazing!