Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Daniel Day Lewis in Athens for the premiere of "Lincoln"

Posted by   GRReporter

Anastasia Balezdrova
Victoria Mindova
Abraham Lincoln "rose" on the screen of the Pallas Theatre in Athens to the delight of those who were lucky enough to obtain tickets for the highly anticipated premiere.

The enthusiasm of the audience was mostly caused by the fact that after the film-show, there was a discussion with the actor who portrays the personality of one of the greatest U.S. presidents in such a skilful manner.
"Daniel Day Lewis perfectly portrays the personality of Lincoln. He gives body and soul to a historical person our notion of whom is based on ​​the results of his work and efforts. The close-ups of the actor in the role of a president who himself assumed the burden to change the history of a country had an overwhelming impact. Lewis managed to combine in the role the impressiveness of the president which we know from the Washington Monument with the human side of Lincoln, who besides being a leader was also a husband, father and a good storyteller," a young woman shared her delight.

Steven Spielberg’s film presents the supreme moment in the career of the 16th president of the United States relating to the abolition of slavery and the end of the devastating American Civil War.
At the beginning, the actor admitted that he did not know the history of Lincoln in detail. "To prepare for the role, I read many books about Lincoln and especially his biography, written by Doris Kearns Goodwin on which the film is partially based. But what gives the most accurate idea of the character of Lincoln, his way of thinking, are his emblematic speeches," said Daniel Day Lewis.
"I think that what we need to remember from Lincoln is the idea of unification, the union, and that love can actually unite people. He never accepted the American South which was at enmity with the North as a territory separate from the United States."
In his conversation with the audience, Lewis said with a small dose of humour that his decision to play the Hollywood version of Lincoln could be successful or he "would never get a job as an actor again." The audience responded to the openness of the actor, who was not afraid of being self-critical, spontaneously with laughter and applause.
"What we need to remember from Lincoln is the idea of unification, the union, and that love can actually unite people. He never accepted the American South which was at enmity with the North as a territory separate from the United States."
He said that it took him one year to prepare for the film. "Steven Spielberg told me about this project seven years ago, but then I could not imagine how I could be useful to him for this role". The actor said that he felt obliged to present the personality of Abraham Lincoln as accurately as possible to "rehabilitate" his profession. "We must not forget that Lincoln was assassinated by an actor namely during a theatrical play".
"But even if an attempt on his life was not made, he probably would have died shortly after the war. The struggle to introduce the 13th amendment to the constitution (which introduces the statutory right of every American citizen to be born free and not a slave) exhausted him physically and he was at the end of his tether."
Lewis shared his thoughts about the moral burden that Lincoln had taken on with the decision not to put an end to the civil war that had lasted more than four years in order to achieve the adoption of the law contested by many. "It was very hard for him to take on the burden of more killing on the battlefield, but he withstood until the end."
Although he has won two Academy Awards, Daniel Day Lewis creates the impression of a very humble and natural person who, like most of us, perceives his job with a considerable dose of distrust.
The film is nominated in 12 categories for this year's Academy Awards, including the best actor category. "If Daniel wins the Oscar this year, he will become the first actor in history, to win three gold statuettes. We will be very proud because this will happen for his starring in a co-production in which we too take part," said the director of the 20th Century Fox film company Jim Giannopoulos, who inaugurated the film's premiere.

Those who wanted to see him up close began crowding around the entrance of the Pallas Theatre very early on. People of all ages and many representatives of the Greek business and artistic elite filled the hall and the ground floor.
Among the guests at the premiere could be seen people of the Greek high life as well. Goodwill Ambassador of UNESCO Mariana Vardinogiannis arrived at the event surrounded by bodyguards. The sister of billionaire Yiannis Latsis - Mariana Latsis and her son Paris, Minister of Tourism Olga Kefalogianni, the popular Greek singer George Dallaras with his wife and PASOK deputy, Anna, also attended the social event.

Members of the business elite of the country such as the honorary chairman of Eurobank Timos Christodoulou, the chief executive of the same bank Nikos Nanopoulos, the chairman of the Institute for Economic and Industrial Research and owner of S & B "Industrial Minerals" S.A. Odysseas Kyriakopoulos and his wife attended the premiere too.
The film-show itself was not without incidents. Although 20th Century Fox had reserved one of the most beautiful venues in Athens, the speech of the characters began to differ from the picture and subtitles in the middle of the film. At first, the audience politely waited and gave the technical staff a minute to fix the failure, but shouting and clapping began a little later. Finally, a representative of the organisation who was sitting in the third row in the hall had to run to the cabin of the film projector operator to alert him to fix the problem.

The organisation of the premiere was initiated by the prevention centre for children with cerebral palsy. Daniel Day Lewis has a special relationship with the organisation in Athens of which he is a long-time supporter. The chairwoman of the organisation Daphne Economou expressed her special gratitude to the actor, who has not failed to attend in the past five years the premiere of every one of his films in Athens and to help the centre and the 240 children with cerebral palsy that it shelters. She did not fail to note before the audience of the Pallas Theatre that Lewis has been doing a lot for children in need and that not only does he offer moral support to people suffering from the serious disease, but also helps in the fund-raising to support the activities of the centre.

The price of tickets was 20 euro for the premiere and the meeting with the actor and 30 euro for admission to the cocktail. The proceeds from the sale will go to the prevention centre of children with cerebral palsy.

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