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PEOPLE Greece

Theo Angelopoulos dies at 76

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Theo Angelopoulos dies at 76

Theo Angelopoulos passed away last night (24 January) from massive cranial trauma after being run down by a passing motorcycle. The acclaimed film-maker was on the set of The Other Sea, which was meant to be the closing chapter of his latest trilogy, following The Weeping Meadow and the The Dust of Time [+see also:
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The Athens-born filmmaker studied law and practised film criticism before directing. Having always separated his work in trilogies, he first made his mark by sweeping local and international film festivals with his feature debut Reconstruction in 1970. Landscape in the Mist, which earned him the Silver Lion in 1988 and Eternity and a Day, with which he won the Palme d'Or in 1998, are considered the highlights of his career and the brightest examples of a captivating as well as challenging style of storytelling.

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Having influenced a whole generation of filmmakers inside and beyond borders, Angelopoulos was widely regarded as Greece's most important working filmmaker. In view of his passing, Culture Minister Pavlos Geroulanos released a farewell note to "a monumental ambassador of the country's culture [whose passing] gives true meaning to the word 'irreplaceable'".

The Other Sea, starring Italy's Toni Servillo and Greek newcomer Irini Stratigopoulou, was in the middle of its six-week shoot. Scripted by Angelopoulos with input from Cretan writer Rhea Galanaki and long-time collaborator acclaimed novelist Petros Markaris, the film was to focus on the economic hardships of modern-day Greece - the future of the €4-5 million production is now uncertain. The director is survived by his wife and daughter.

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