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Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by John Minchin on 26.09.2016

Mystery family portrait

This photo was found in a box in the basement of a house in Potamos.  There are no details except that it was photographed in Esma Studios, Oxford St, Sydney. So it is likely the photo was sent to relatives in Potamos.

Anyone know who this family is?

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by James Victor Prineas on 05.07.2016

Brettes Haniotis and two sons

Here's my great grandfather Brettos Haniotis with two of his three sons: Panayoti (Peter) and Theodorakis (Akis). Taken sometime around 1920.

 

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Samson Tsahiridis on 08.04.2016

Great-grandmother Sophia Kontoleon with her four children and other Greek friends in St. Louis, Missouri

My grandmother Marian in the middle with her older sister Gloria on the first step to her left and then to her right is her younger brother Kosta and the girl further over is the other sister Ourania. Kosta and Ourania are still alive today as of April 7, 2016. My great-grandmother is Sophia Kontoleon was married to my great-grandfather, not pictured, John Kontoleon and they were both from Viarathika. 

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Kytherian Cinema Review on 15.02.2016

George Miller at the BAFTA's, 2016

Mad Max receives four awards at BAFTA's (British Academy of Film and Television Arts)

Sky News

Monday, 15 February 2016


Australian director George Miller's film Mad Max: Fury Road has won four awards at the Baftas.

Cate Blanchett has missed out on a best actress award at the British Academy Film Awards in London but fellow Australian George Miller's Mad Max film has picked up four.

Blanchett was up for best actress on Sunday night for her role in the lesbian love story Carol but the award went to American Brie Larson for her role in Room as a young mother held hostage with her son.

Leonardo DiCaprio won best actor for his role in The Revenant at the ceremony at the Royal Opera House.

Mad Max: Fury Road picked up Bafta awards for best editing, best costume design, best production design and best make-up and hair.

Mad Max was nominated for seven awards in total but not for best film or best director.

The British Academy Film Awards ceremony was held at the Royal Opera House and was hosted by Stephen Fry, with Blanchett and Australian comedian Rebel Wilson both presenting awards.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Eptanesian Union Greece on 19.12.2015

Professor Minas Coroneo receives award, for Kythera,

along with Dr Manolis Kalokerinos, at the 3rd Presentation of Ionian (Eptanisian) Union of Greece, Awards.

The awards were held on December 13, 2015,
December 13, 2015 in the National History Museum of the Old Parliament Building.

Invitation to Minas Coroneos to attend the ceremony to receive his award:

The awards ceremony takes place as an expression of respect and pride for Ionians who have excelled in various fields (art, science, culture, etc.) and helped to highlight their place of origin in their own special and unique way.

Consequently, we inform you that unanimously we have chosen among 14 personalities from the Ionian Islands, you Minas Coroneo from the island of Kythera, based on the undeniable recognition that you are one of the most distinguished ophthalmologists in the world. We would be deeply and emotionally honoured to have you and your present at the awards ceremony.

Please be advised that the IONIAN UNION of GREECE to further honour the winners will proceed to create a private collector's stamp - of philatelic value - through the Hellenic Post Office - in the form of a special commemorative series. (A day cover, will utilise your photo, and to be allocated to you).

Hoping for a the positive response to our invitation. Thank you in advance, and wish you every personal and professional success.

The Board of IONIAN UNION of GREECE

The President
Eleni Konofaou
The General. Secretary
Maria Grammatikou
First Deputy Speaker: Evangelos Giannoulatos
Deputy President: Katerina Dragona
Treasurer: Dimitris Mauropous
Assistant Secretary: Angelina Bears
Assistant Treasurer: Gerasimos Rosolymos
Public Relations: Eleftherios Katopodis
Advisors:
Thomas Katsaros
Dimitrios Argyros
Kavvada Basilica
Manias Chrysostom
Loutas Nikolaos
Helen Death
Nikos Glytsos


Report by Lefkada News:

Ionian Islands awards in the old Parliament House

12/14/2015 Views


On Sunday afternoon members of the Ionian Union gathered in the centre of Athens to honour Ionians who have made Ionia (the Eptanisian (seven islands)) proud. For the 3rd year, Old Parliament House, hosted in its imposing hall representatives of the the arts, sciences, and entrepreneurship. From Corfu in the north to Kythera, in the south, Paxos, Ithaca, Lefkada, Zakynthos, and Kefalonia.

They brought together all the leading Ionians who in their professional pathways have managed to make the Ionian Islands a proud and innovative place, and put on show the ‘values and greatness of our island’. The evening began with the greeting of the Union of the Ionian Islands president, Helen Konofaou and poetic rendition entitled "flashed light and how the young person came to know himself”. It was directed by Peter Gallia with Giorgos Vlachos, Katerina Georgakis and Petros Gallia.

Vicky Leandros from Corfu was the first to receive her award. Vicky is a grand and consummate artist, but one of great modesty. She worked alongside Hector Botrini. She said, it all started in Corfu when they built their first restaurant – the wonderful Etrusco. The packed room then waited impatiently for the presentation to Paxos. This was because the award to Paxos was to be presented to Christopher Papakaliatis. The premier of his avant-garde second film "Another World” had occurred just a few days before. The audience delighted in Christopher’s success. He talked about returning to Paxos. About his childhood trips to the island, and the nostalgia. What can you say about the other award for Paxos? Spyros Katsimi. The journalist, writer. The words would be few.

Then it was the turn of Lefkada. And the whole room applauded interminably on hearing the name of Elias Logothetis, of Froufalou, in Lefkada. Although the award was for all the Ionian Islands ..., he said, with his unique brand of humour has, his heart was pounding in Lefkada. The award was received by the deputy of the Cultural Centre, Spyros Arvanitis.

The next award from Lefkada was for a man who is deceased, but still helps and supports, always during the difficult times for Lefkada and Greece. One of these was the recent earthquake. And it was none other than the late Spyros Sklavenitis, owner of the super market SKLAVENITIS. Lefkada was always the dearest place in his life. He passed on his love for Lefkada to his children, who today continue his work. His daughter Maria obviously moved, received the award and spoke of the ‘father of Lefkada’, from the heart. "We will always be next to Lefkas, she said, because we learnt our love of Lefkada from our father. “This even though we grew up in Piraeus; we feel that our life begins from Lefkada ". The award was presented to Maria Sklavenitis by MP Thanassis Kavvadas.

This year Kefalonia honoured Akis Tselenti. Akis is a Seismologist. "The earthquakes should be our friend there in the Ionian islands”, he said. “Thanks to earthquakes we have these beautiful beaches” He also spoke about the dignity of the Cephalonian against the devastating passage of Enceladus. Second Cephalonian to be awarded was Thanos Ascetic, a neurologist, and a psychiatrist specializing in sexual health issues.

Ithaca awarded the teacher John Karantzi – and a doctor and healthcare worker who had excelled abroad, Constantine Rosolymo. Zakynthos honoured a woman who was well received. The businesswoman Vagionia Stasinopoulou. The owner of Empnefstria which sells ‘fresh’ cosmetics, through 250 stores around the world. The business was begun utilising simple recipes from her Zakynthian grandmother.

A moving moment for audience occurred when the mother of the second Zakynthian awardee, the internationally famous tenor, Thimou Flemotomou, received the award for her child, thanking the organizers profusely.

Manolis Kalokerinos, for years the President of the Panhellenic Medical Association and director of the First Surgical Clinic of the General State Athens, from Kythera, needs no introduction. "It's our doctor," exclaimed those who came to the old parliament to honour him. And that was enough to distinguish this great personality from ‘Tsirigo’. Kythera also honoured the great scientist in the field of ophthalmology, from Australia, Minas Coroneo, who has performed extraordinary work in the field of the bionic eye.

An award was made also to the benefactor of the classical music festival Paxos - late Englishman, John Gough. Gough possessed the vision to begin this unique festival 26 years ago. The award was presented to the organiser of the festival, Eleftheria Arvanitaki.

The master of ceremonies for the event was journalist Peter Koumplis.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by News Corp Network on 11.12.2015

Held the dream for 36 years ... Director George Miller poses with the AACTA Award for Best Film for Mad Max: Fury Road.

Picture: Mark Metcalfe / Getty Images for AFISource:Getty Images

George Miller named best director and Max Mad: Fury Road best film at Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards (AACTA Awards)

December 9 2015 9, 2015


George Miller’s epic film Mad Max: Fury Road has been crowned the best film of the Australian industry’s biggest year at the box office since the 1990s.
The action-packed revival of Miller’s 1970s franchise took out the AACTA Award for Best Film at the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts’ star-studded ceremony on Wednesday night at The Star Event Centre in Sydney.
Having already scooped awards for Cinematography, Sound, Music Score, Editing, Production Design and Visual Effects at last week’s craft awards, Mad Max: Fury Road, which starred Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron, took its total tally to eight AACTAs when Miller was awarded Best Director.
The 70-year-old Miller had fought for years to get another Mad Max movie off the ground — Fury Road eventually had to be shot in Namibia after drought-breaking rains turned Australia’s red desert sands green.
But while the post-apocalyptic blockbuster was largely shot overseas and backed by Hollywood studio Warner Bros, it qualified as an Australian film thanks to its director and funding from local bodies.

The original Mad max ... Mel Gibson with George Miller at the 2015 AACTA Awards held at The Star in Pyrmont, Sydney Picture: Richard Dobson

Miller was given his best director gong by his original Mad Max, Mel Gibson, who is back in town to make his film Hacksaw Ridge.
He seemed genuinely thrilled to present the award to his old colleague.
“Oh hey, it’s George,” he said as he opened up the envelope. Miller praised his Mad Max: Fury Road crew saying “this wasn’t an easy film to make”.

Smaller films shined in the AACTA Awards’ acting categories, with The Dressmakerstar Kate Winslet named Best Lead Actress and castmates Judy Davis and Hugo Weaving claiming the Supporting Actor gongs.
Englishwoman Winslet winning over Charlize Theron’s Mad Max performance may come as a surprise to some, with the South African-born star currently featuring prominently in Oscars predictions over in the US.
Winslet recorded her very funny thank you speech for Best Lead Actress in a feature film from overseas.
“They said I ought to put something together on the off-chance I might win this award. But I’m sure I haven’t because it should go to a local and I am indeed an outsider.
I did put on lipstick just in case. I loved being a part of The Dressmaker. Thank you.”
Unsurprisingly, The Dressmaker stitched up the People’s Choice Award for Favourite Australian Film — Aussies have delivered the Victorian-shot film over $16 million in ticket sales so far.
Meanwhile, Aussie stalwart Michael Caton was recognised for a performance that spanned comedy and moments of heavy drama, winning Best Actor for his role as a taxi driver diagnosed with only months to live in Last Cab to Darwin. It was his first AACTA award.
Cate Blanchett called for more of the country’s actors on screen as she tearfully accepted one of the highest honours in the Australian film industry.
As had been announced, Blanchett was given the Longford Lyell Award for an outstanding contribution to Australian screen by actors Richard Roxburgh and Hugo Weaving.
“Oh I’ve become one of those ridiculous people who cries it’s just a f!@#ing award,” a teary Blanchett said as she accepted the gong.
A cavalcade of Hollywood directors, including Martin Scorsese, Ron Howard and Robert Redford, delivered video messages congratulating Blanchett.
Blanchett said that more Australian actors should be cast.
“It’s not a quota ... it needs to be fought for,” Blanchett said.
She also acknowledged how happy she was the award she received had had a name change to include Australian 19th century actress and film producer, Lottie Lyell.
“Thank you for recognising Lottie Lyell,” she said.
“I think it’s fantastic AACTAs is coming into the 21st century,” she said in a nod towards gender equality, as the film industry works towards having 50/50 gender equity in upcoming Australian projects.
Backstage, Blanchett said the Australian industry needed to be celebrated for being small and unique, and it should stop trying to emulate other industries around the world.
“I love this industry so deeply and am so very proud to be a part of it that it always pains me so much that we talk ourselves down,” she said.
“We are a small industry and that’s a virtue, I think it makes us unique.”
Directors Ridley Scott and Martin Scorsese both lamented the fact they’d only had the chance to work with Blanchett once and would love to do it again. Robert Redford also paid Blanchett a great tribute.
“You are brilliant and you do honour to your craft,” Ron Howard said.
The director of her upcoming film Carol, Todd Haynes, called the actress “a beacon, a galaxy and a mensch.”
The AACTA Awards’ TV categories were dazzled by Channel 7’s Peter Allen — Not the Boy Next Door, which sang and danced its way to seven statuettes.
That haul included Best Actor awards for the two Peters: Jackson for his Lead role as the grown up Allen and teenager Ky Baldwin for his Supporting work as the young Allen.
Sigrid Thornton’s transformation into the legendary Judy Garland was rewarded with the Best Supporting Actress AACTA.
Not the Boy Next Door was also named Best Telemovie or Miniseries.
Ten’s repackaged MasterChef Australia won in a crowded Best Reality Series category, while the ABC’s new series Glitchwon Best Drama ahead of more experienced and fancied rivals Wentworth, Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries and Love Child.
Pamela Rabe’s consistently terrifying character The Freak in Foxtel drama Wentworth won her Best Actress.

Mad Max: Fury Road grossed $21.7 million at the Australian box office and $520 million internationally.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by John Minchin on 26.11.2015

Panagiotis, Eleni and Stamatina Chlentzos

Panagiotis Demetrios Chlentzos with wife Eleni Diacopoulou, and daughter Stamatina (Bylos).
Photographed in Kythera c. 1920
Panagiotis travelled to Australia with Stamatina in June 1921. In December 1921 she married Peter Stathis (ex Keramouto).

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Sydney Morning Herald on 08.10.2015

George Miller. Has good news and bad news for fans of Mad Max: Fury Road.

Miller reveals the magic and madness behind Fury Road

Sydney Morning Herald

Friday October 9th, 20125, page 2-3

Garry Maddox


Yes, he still wants to shoot the two sequels that were written during the 12 years it took to get that movie to the screen. But it is still too early to say when or even which new instalment – one centring on Tom Hardy's Max, the other on Charlize Theron's Furiosa – he will film next.

"We're certainly talking about them but exactly the timing of that, I don't know," Miller said. "We're still working all that out."

The sequels, which would be shot in Australia after extended rain at Broken Hill forced a shift to the Namibian desert for Fury Road, have been a hot topic since the movie became a rare box office hit, taking $US375 million worldwide, that was almost universally acclaimed by critics.

The fourth Mad Max movie started with an idea that flashed into Miller's head as he crossed a street in Los Angeles in 1998. Then two years later, the former doctor had what he calls a waking dream – with the movie playing out in his head – on a flight from from Los Angeles to Sydney.

Ahead of a talk on creating Fury Road at the Graphic Festival on Sunday, Miller said it grew out of his "strong sense of inquiry".

Recasting changed the storytelling: Tom Hardy in Mad Max: Fury Road. Photo: Jasin Boland

"One of the things that drew me to this film was the notion of an extended chase and seeing what [viewers] could pick up on the run as it were," he said. "We were trying to put as much iceberg as possible underneath the tip.

"So you read it on the surface as a kind of visual poem but underneath you're trying to pick up as much subtext as possible."
As well as being one of the country's great storytellers – an Oscar winner whose celebrated directing career includes four Mad Max movies, two Happy Feets, Lorenzo's Oil, The Witches of Eastwick and the mini-series The Dismissal – Miller has long been a deep thinker about how stories work and why they matter, drawing on the theories of American mythologist Joseph Campbell.

"One of the major attractions of working in this wasteland world with Mad Max and all his cohorts is that you're going forward to the past," he said. "You're going back to a much more elemental world, which allows you to basically work in allegory.
"So you're drawing on history. You're drawing on present-day events. You're drawing on speculations as to the future we may be heading towards. You're conflating all of those and putting them into the mix and being rigorous about the design criteria that you're working with ... so that even though the movie plays at a helter-skelter pace, [viewers] are picking up enough on the run to make it believable. You hope they're drawn up into the world of the screen without questioning it."

Miller, 70, said "dreaming" a movie was far from rare in his life.
"It probably means I'm crazy but I do it all the time. Ever since I was a little kid, I've been living this imaginative life.
"The more you do something, the more your neurology adjusts to it and I'm pretty well hard-wired for story. Out of habit now, stories are playing in my head all the time."

Every movie Miller has written has come from a similar experience.
"They're not sleeping dreams," he said. "They're what I call hypnagogic dreams or daydreaming – that place between sleep and wakefulness. That unguarded moment when you're in a kind of dissociated state ... It's always in those sort of moments: on a long flight or in the shower.
"I remember having a conversation with George Lucas once and he said just about every great idea he's ever had has come in the shower because you can't be on the internet, you can't be on the phone, you're not watching TV.
"You're just there in that kind of state and the ideas come to your mind."
Miller said it necessarily changed the storytelling in Fury Road when Hardy took over from Mel Gibson as Max in the action series.
"The essential architecture of the story is always going to be there. But the actual tones and colour are going to vary depending on what the actor brings.
"You have something in your mind as you've written or devised it but when it's captured in the camera, that becomes the new reality. That's what you've got to work with.
"It's impossible to know exactly how different it would be but it must be different and pretty soon you've forgotten what you had in your imagination."

After that waking dream one night over the Pacific, Miller and co-writers Brendan McCarthy and Nico Lathouris developed Fury Road in an inventive way. Instead of a script, they created 3500 storyboard panels – effectively comic book scenes – that outlined what happened in the movie shot by shot.

"The task was to see how much story or experience or felt life you could create for an audience during a very fast action piece," he said. "I'm always interested as to how film language is evolving.
"It's an acquired language. It basically laid down its syntax in the silent era. In many ways Mad Max is a silent movie with sound."

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Barbara Zantiotis on 29.05.2015

Kyrani Anastasopoulos 1956

My mum was born in Perlegianika in 1938. Her parents were Peter Anastasopoulos and Barbara Komninou.
In April 1956, my mother arrived in her new homeland aged 18. This photo was taken in Auburn, Sydney where she went to live with George and Koula Carydis.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Ethnos Newspaper on 19.05.2015

George Miller with his family, who migrated from Greece.

On the left is Thanasis and Toula Sklavos.

Οικογενειακή σύναξη στην Αυστραλία, μαζί με τους συγγενείς που έφτασαν από την Ελλάδα.
Στα δεξιά διακρίνονται ο Θανάσης και η Τούλα Σκλάβου.

ΕΘΝΟΣ «E» 17/5/2015

ΤΖΟΡΤΖ ΜΙΛΕΡ ΑΠΟΘΕΩΣΗ ΑΠΟ ΤΟΥΣ ΕΛΛΗΝΕΣ ΤΗΣ ΑΥΣΤΡΑΛΙΑΣ

Μιλάει Ελληνικά και στηρίζει τις δράσεις της ομογένειας
Ο Τζορτζ Μίλερ γεννήθηκε στην πόλη Τσιντσίλα του Κουίνσλαντ, 3 Μαρτίου του 1945 με τον δίδυμο αδελφό του Γιάννη, ενώ η οικογένεια απέκτησε και άλλα δύο αγόρια, τον Χρήστο και τον Βασίλη.

Σε εκείνη την άκρη της Γης έπαιζε ινδιάνους και καουμπόηδες με τους φίλους του και παρακολουθούσε μερικά φιλμ της εποχής που εξάπτουν τη φαντασία των παιδιών. Αργότερα η οικογένεια έφτασε στο Σίδνεϊ, ενώ ο Τζορτζ μεταξύ άλλων υπήρξε και παπαδοπαίδι στον ναό του Αγίου Γεωργίου.
Ο σκηνοθέτης του «Mad Max» σπούδασε Ιατρική μαζί με τον δίδυμο αδελφό του, εργάστηκε σε νοσοκομείο και κέρδισε βραβείο σε διαγωνισμό μονόλεπτου φιλμ. Για χρόνια υπηρέτησε την Ιατρική πριν τον κερδίσει ο κινηματογράφος και σταδιακά γύρισε επαγγελματική σελίδα. Τα επείγοντα περιστατικά του δημόσιου νοσοκομείου όπου βίωσε δύσκολες καταστάσεις, τραυματισμούς και θανάτους, και η εξάσκηση του ιατρικού επαγγέλματος για χρόνια ήταν η αναγκαία προϋπόθεση για να υποστηρίξει την καριέρα του σκηνοθέτη.
Η πρώτη ταινία του είχε τίτλο «Βία στο σινεμά μέρος πρώτον», αν και δεν υπήρξε ποτέ η συνέχεια. Σημείο-σταθμό βεβαίως αποτέλεσε ο «Mad Max». Ηταν το 1979 όταν ο Μίλερ παρουσίασε τον ήρωά του, έναν αστυνομικό που μεταμορφώνεται σε εκδικητή για τον χαμό της οικογένειάς του. Πρωταγωνιστής ο άσημος τότε Μελ Γκίμπσον, ο οποίος τότε έγινε γνωστός στο ευρύ κοινό.



Με τη σύζυγο και τον πρώτο τους γιο στα Κύθηρα.
Την ταινία, η οποία έγινε παγκόσμια επιτυχία, απέφερε τεράστια κέρδη και απέσπασε βραβεία δημιούργησε ο Τ. Μίλερ σε συνεργασία με τον Β. Κένεντι. Ακολούθησε το δεύτερο μέρος το 1981 με πεδίο πάλι την Αυστραλία, ενώ το 1989 η τρίτη πράξη βρίσκει τον ήρωα Μαξ στη μέση της ερήμου σε ένα δυστοπικό μέλλον. Εκτός από τον «Mad Max» ο Τζορτζ Μίλερ έχει υπογράψει σημαντικά έργα και έχει διακριθεί πολλές φορές. Κέρδισε το Οσκαρ κινουμένων σχεδίων με την ταινία «Happy Feet», ενώ είχε και τρεις υποψηφιότητες για Οσκαρ για το σενάριο της ταινίας «Lorenzo's Oil» και την ταινία «Babe» στις κατηγορίες Καλύτερης Ταινίας και Σεναρίου. Μάλιστα έχει συνεργαστεί με πολλούς πρωταγωνιστές του Χόλιγουντ, όπως οι Τζακ Νίκολσον, Μισέλ Φάιφερ, Σερ, Νικόλ Κίντμαν κ.ά.




Οι γονείς Μίλερ (κέντρο) και ο αδελφός του Γιάννης (αριστερά).
Δεν ξεχνά τις ελληνικές ρίζες του
Παράλληλα με την καλλιτεχνική καταξίωση όμως δεν ξεχνά ποτέ τις ελληνικές ρίζες. Στην Αυστραλία η πολυπληθής παροικία των Κυθηρίων με 50-60.000 μέλη αναπτύσσει έντονη κοινωνική δράση και ο Τζορτζ Μίλερ δίνει συχνά το «παρών» λέει ο Γιώργος Πούλος γραμματέας στον Σύνδεσμο Κυθηρίων και εκπρόσωπος του Kythira family net όπου υπάρχει εκτενής αναφορά και φωτογραφίες απο την πορεία της οικογένειας.



Κοντά στην Ομογένεια της Αυστραλίας. Με τον πρόεδρο του Συνδέσμου Κυθηρίων Βίκτωρα Κυπριώτη και την αντιπρόεδρο Κατερίνα Σαμίου.

http://www.ethnos.gr/article.asp?catid=22768&subid=2&pubid=64187974

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by M Negas on 21.06.2015

George & Steve Malos - Australia 1939

Brothers George & Steve Malos

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by M Negas on 30.05.2015

Steve & George Malos - Australia 1939

Steve Malos arrived in Australia with father Paul Malos in 1934. His brother George arrived in 1939. George went to Mackay to stay with relatives, but sadly drowned one year later in Monto Qld. George was also suffering from Osteomyelitis.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by M Negas on 27.07.2015

Moulos (Malos) Ormiston - Redland Bay - Australia 1948-1950

Paul Malos & family on their strawberry farm at Ormiston.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by M Negas on 21.06.2015

Moulos (Malos) Ormiston - Redland Bay - Australia 1948-1950

Paul & Smarago Malos and 2 helpers on their strawberry farm at Ormiston.
Paul Malos arrived in Australia with his eldest son Steve in 1934 and then brought out the rest of his family in 1939 & 1947.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Sydney Morning Herald on 12.05.2015

George Poulos with his daughter, Aphrodite, and son, Nik, outside his milk bar in 2014.

"It gave him something to do — to get up in the morning and do things." Photo: Wolter Peeters

Farewell to George Poulos, the man who made milkshakes in Summer Hill for 63 years

Sydney Morning Herald

Date May 11, 2015

Stephanie Wood


He was a soldier and a hero. His family called him "the General". He made milkshakes in Summer Hill for 63 years and not once did he turn up for work in anything other than a long-sleeved shirt and tie.

On Tuesday last week, George Poulos opened The Rio, his famous old milk bar in Smith Street as usual. At 92, Mr Poulos was frail. He may have spent more of the day sitting on his sofa bed behind the shop than at the counter, where he displayed a Greek flag and a photograph of himself as a young soldier. Perhaps he watched a video — he liked John Wayne movies, especially Rio Bravo, and I Love Lucy and M*A*S*H. Perhaps he made someone a milkshake. Perhaps he didn't. Most only came to gawk — at the vintage shop, its retro signage and the old man and his scant range of confectionery. Few spent money.


George Poulos with his family behind the counter of The Rio in its golden years. From left, Stavroula, Nik, Aphrodite, George holding Margaret and George's father, Philip. "We used to open until 11 o'clock waiting for the picture show to come out," says Nik Poulos.

Perhaps Mr Poulos closed early: he hadn't been well lately, according to his son. But earlier in the month he'd begged to get out of hospital. "He needed to go back and open his business," says Nik Poulos, who arrived at The Rio on Wednesday afternoon to discover it was locked up. He jumped over a back fence and broke in to discover his father had died some time after he had closed the day before.

The business was his whole life, says Nik Poulos. "He'd be open until 10 o'clock at night sometimes just for one person to come in and get one drink. It just kept him alive; he didn't make any money from it."

It was not always so: once, George Poulos called The Rio "the goldmine". Through the '50s, '60s and '70s, the milk bar had a symbiotic relationship with the old Summer Hill movie theatre.


George behind The Rio counter. Once, the shop was a goldmine and people queued out the door for milkshakes.

"We used to open until 11 o'clock waiting for the picture show to come out," says Nik Poulos, who grew up working behind the counter. "They were three deep there waiting for milkshakes. We had the old-fashioned seats there. We had people like Johnny O'Keefe and Lionel Long (come in)… I was the f-- Fonz before the Fonz was even thought of. The best milkshakes in the whole of New South Wales were made by my Dad."

George Poulos sailed into Sydney in 1952 on the Cyrenia, a former troop carrier converted into a migrant vessel. He'd come from the family village, Parori, in Northern Greece. He'd fought in World War II and the Greek Civil War and, according to his son, was a hero. "He looked like Rambo; he saved our whole town during the Civil War when the Communists tried to take over."

In Sydney, George quickly went into business with his uncle, Chris, and his father Philip, who'd already been in Australia for more than a decade cutting cane in Queensland. George soon enough sent for his wife, Stavroula, son Nik and daughter Aphrodite. Another child, Margaret, was born nine months after the family was reunited.


War hero: George Poulos as a Greek soldier.

He fiercely protected his girls. "(He) still lived like if he was in Greece," says Nik Poulos. After Stavroula died in 1998, a female in-law would send him letters at Christmas. He refused to open them because she was a married woman. "That's how old-fashioned my Dad was."

He was also independent and determined. While he was alive, the shop would remain open. "It gave him something to do — to get up in the morning and do things," says Nik Poulos, who in later years would come from his home on the Central Coast to visit his father and take him to the local supermarket to replenish the little stock he had sold. "He literally worked until the last day."

The shop though, was always more than simply a job. "It offered him a sense of presence in a new land because those in the local community knew him," says Macquarie University historian and curator, Leonard Janiszewski, who, with his colleague Effy Alexakis, interviewed Poulos for their project "In Their Own Image: Greek-Australians". "He remained with the shop, the things that he knew; he knew that he was a recognisable character within his urban scene. George said, 'people know me around here, I've been here so long'."

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Hellenic War History on 09.05.2015

Maria Hill presented with an award by the Greek Ambassador Charalambos Dafaranos and his wife Eva

Maria was invited to give a talk in Canberra on 29 April 2015, at the opening for the art exhibition called "Lemnos - the Greek dimension in the Anzac Centenary."

Maria made historical reference to Lemnos and its contribution to the Allied War effort during World War I.

The 'Lemnos' presentation was organised as part of the events for the Centenary of the Australian and New Zealand Expeditionary Corps, in the presence of diplomatic corps representatives, local media, Australian Foreign Ministry officials and Greek Diaspora members.

The exhibition, curated by Eva Dafaranos, included the works of 14 artists from various Australian states, such as New South Wales, Victoria, Perth and the Australian Capital Territory. “The ANZAC Centenary is a historic milestone for two countries that I hold dear, Australia and New Zealand, so there is no doubt that I felt the need to commemorate in an artistic way the Greek connection to this landmark anniversary,” said the curator.

The Greek Australian artists participating in the exhibition were: Karen Barbouttis, Nick Bonovas, Stephen Caldis, Olga Cironis, George Comino, Alexandra Danalis, Eva T. Dafaranos, Stella Karydiotou, Dean Manning, Peter Michalandos, George Raftopoulos, Ros Psakis, George Zindilis and Athena Xenakis.

The exhibition was presented at the Greek Embassy in Canberra (115 Empire Circuit, Yarralumla) and it remained open to the public on Saturday and Sunday, May 2 and 3 from 11 am to 4 pm. Admission was free.

At the event the Ambassador presented Maria Hill - a military historian - with an award for her outstanding contribution to Hellenism.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Sydney Morning Herald on 30.04.2015

Charlize Theron with director George Miller. Photo Jasin Boland Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc

On the set of Mad Max: Fury Road with director George Miller

Sydney Morning Herald

April 25, 2015

Garry Maddox


The badlands of the latest Mad Max movie have never looked more forbidding. But for director George Miller, it’s a happy homecoming.

Mad Max: George Miller's enduring anti-hero
Thirty years on, the iconic Mad Max franchise has been reimagined by its original creator.The result is an explosive, 'very Australian' modern action movie. George Miller talks to Garry Maddox.

Inside a cavernous sound stage in sweltering heat, a surreal scene is taking place. A band of skinny, shirtless men wearing filthy shorts and bandannas are clambering onto two giant steel turbines. On a command, they begin to pedal. The job of these sorry souls, called Treadmill Rats, is to operate a platform that brings battle vehicles and warriors up to a mountaintop citadel then back down to a desert wasteland.

Milling around nearby are a group of bald youths, also shirtless and wearing combat pants. They are daubed in white paint and marked with a menacing skull tattoo. Called the War Pups, they answer to a masked warlord known as Immortan Joe, who styles himself as a cult leader in the post-apocalyptic future.

While the Treadmill Rats pedal, the War Pups lounge around waiting for their scene. A make-up artist touches up the white paint on one. Another has found a spot in the sun to study a school book.

Watching the action intently on a monitor is George Miller, the acclaimed director who is about to finally finish filming Mad Max: Fury Road at Sydney's Fox Studios.

The former doctor made his name with Mad Max in 1979, then followed up in 1981 with Mad Max 2 (known as The Road Warrior in the US) and Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome in 1985. While he has had many other successes, including the Oscar-winning Happy Feet, the trilogy about a damaged cop roaming the lawless Australian wasteland remains a cinema landmark.

Tom Hardy fires up as Mad Max

Photo: Jasin Boland/Warner Bros. Entertainment

Still one of the most profitable films ever made, the first instalment launched an unknown Mel Gibson to stardom as Max Rockatansky and influenced countless celluloid versions of the post-apocalyptic future. Out of Miller's vivid imagination came such memorable characters as Toecutter, Goose, the Feral Kid, the Gyro Captain, Master Blaster and Aunt Entity, as well as an inspired range of futuristic vehicles.

And there, on the platform the Treadmill Rats have been lowering, is one of the icons of the series – Max's Interceptor, the black V8 muscle car he drove at turbo-charged speed in his battered leather jacket with a cattle dog by his side. Despite the heat, Miller is also wearing a black leather jacket as he directs one of the last of 135 gruelling days on the movie.

"I liked being hot from when I was making the first Mad Max," he says, joking that it might be an attempt to raise his metabolism, or just an idiosyncratic security blanket on set.

Charlize Theron muscles in as Furiosa

Photo: Jasin Boland/Warner Bros. Entertainment

Miller describes Fury Road as a "wild and operatic" chase movie that is neither a reboot, prequel nor sequel. "It's revisiting the world," he says. "For me, it's revisiting old friends."

Pursued by Immortan Joe's marauding hordes, a one-armed female warrior named Imperator Furiosa, played by Charlize Theron, drives a giant tanker carrying a precious cargo – his five young wives – through the wasteland. Along the way, she gets help from Max, played this time by Tom Hardy.

In its 114 minutes, Fury Road features no less than 300 stunts, all performed for real on set rather than simulated in a studio with digital effects. "Old school", Miller calls it. There are enough crashes, jumps, tumbles and explosions for producer Doug Mitchell to describe the movie as "Mad Max 2 on steroids".

Future shock: It took only minutes for George Miller to be inspired to make Fury Road It took 12 years to bring it to the big screen

Photo: Tim Bauer

As epic as that sounds, the movie's production has been even more so. Over 12 years, Miller has had to persevere during three major delays, with three actors down to play Max – including Heath Ledger until his tragic death – a switch of continents, three different Hollywood studios and enough financial challenges to sink just about any other movie.

And with up to 10 cameras shooting the action, Fury Road has been assembled from a huge 480 hours of footage. Back in the sound stage, it's time for a shot that has two War Pups reacting to Max's arrival off screen. They are joined by one of Immortan Joe's sons, Corpus Colossus (Quentin Kenihan), in a harness seat.

"Can we ask Jamie to just drop his head a little
bit," Miller says calmly into a microphone. "Crouch down. Not too far forward, Riley. And we're in action. The vehicles arrive. We're watching Max."

Around the corner, production designer Colin Gibson prepares for another shot. Up a ladder, he is painting a slogan on the wall of what looks like a cave: "There's a new world coming … she's already on her way."

This is the mountaintop vault where Immortan Joe keeps The Wives, played by a glamorous group of actresses and models: Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Abbey Lee Kershaw, Courtney Eaton, Zoe Kravitz and Riley Keough.

Gibson describes the cave as a combined harem, library, crèche and museum for all the flotsam and jetsam of history. "In a world of horror, this is an attempt to keep all the other bits of civilisation you don't worry about anywhere else," he says. "There's music, art, literature, plants."

A short walk away on the busy lot – Angelina Jolie is directing Unbroken and Russell Crowe is shooting The Water Diviner on other sound stages – Mitchell and Gibson show off more
of the dystopian world. Their team
has built 150 metres of tunnels, where Max is held prisoner and treated as a blood donor.

In another corner stands the truck that Furiosa pilots across the desert. Called the War Rig – one of three built for the movie – it looks like a battered dusty petrol tanker with chunks of two other vehicles welded on top, spiked wheels and a fuel-pod trailer.

"For George, this was Stagecoach, this was John Ford," says Gibson in a reference to the classic John Wayne western that takes place on the move. "There may be 10 million stunts happening out there but this is the stage for the drama. The beating heart."

Upstairs in the elegant Metro Theatre in Potts Point, three kilometres away, is an office with a rich history that dates back to some of the famous miniseries Kennedy Miller made in the 1980s. It was the prime minister's office in The Dismissal, a ship's bar in Bodyline, and a prison in The Cowra Breakout. Now it's Mad Max Central. George Miller's office.

With only weeks until Fury Road opens worldwide on May 14, the director is still flat out finishing all the different versions required for a Hollywood blockbuster: subtitled, dubbed, IMAX and various sound and 3D formats.

Beneath three whirring ceiling fans, signs of the movie are everywhere. There are large black models of the War Rig and another vehicle called the Doof Wagon, which urges warriors into battle in the movie with musician Iota playing a flame-throwing guitar. Elsewhere, some of the ornate steering wheels worshipped by War Boys, grown-up War Pups, hang on a wall, and a pile of movie posters are waiting to be approved.

For much of the production, the office was lined with 3500 storyboard panels that outline what happens shot by shot in Fury Road. "That's how we conceived the film," says Miller.

A genial figure behind glasses, the 70-year-old has long been one of the country's finest filmmakers, telling serious, thoughtful stories in a variety of genres.

Since forming Kennedy Miller with the late Byron Kennedy in the 1970s, George Miller has directed and mostly produced The Dismissal, The Witches of Eastwick, Lorenzo's Oil, Babe: Pig in the City, two Happy Feet films and the Mad Max trilogy. He also produced Babe (which he co-wrote), Bodyline, Vietnam, The Year My Voice Broke, Dead Calm and Bangkok Hilton. And he's done it all while living in Sydney rather than moving full-time to Los Angeles.

The four-time Oscar nominee – he was a winner for Happy Feet – traces his intense imaginative life back to a childhood based around play, without television, as one of four sons of Kytherian Greek immigrant parents in the Queensland town of Chinchilla.

After studying medicine at the University of NSW with his twin brother John, then working at St Vincent's Hospital in Sydney, Miller was already making short films when he met Kennedy at a University of Melbourne film workshop.

He worked as a locum while they shot Mad Max around Melbourne, with the story influenced by seeing the damage caused by the country's car culture: the "death by autocide" in rural Queensland, and then dealing with the trauma as an emergency doctor.

"Ever since I was a kid, I've basically lived the imaginative life," Miller says. "I'm pretty hard-wired for that now. So these characters you've come up with, they live like imaginary characters in your head."

One of these characters, Max Rockatansky, unexpectedly jumped back to life as Miller crossed a street in Los Angeles in 1998. "Halfway across, this idea popped into my head," he says. "I thought, 'Oh my, that's a Mad Max movie.' By the time I got to the other side of the road, I said, 'There's no way I'm going to go anywhere near that because I've already done three.'

"Two years after that, I was on a plane flying across the Pacific during the night – from Los Angeles to Sydney – and the whole movie played in my head. It was in a rough form and it was very misty but the scenes played.

"By the time I landed, I told everyone, 'I think we're going to make another Mad Max movie.' "

Influenced by a love of silent movies and Alfred Hitchcock's theory about making films so people in other countries do not need to read subtitles, Miller conceived Fury Road as a helter-skelter action movie told largely through visuals rather than words.

After the apocalypse, there are no books, internet or TV, and language has become purely functional. So Max speaks just 41 lines and Furiosa less than 100. "There's very specific language in Fury Road but people don't do it recreationally and they don't think aloud because they're in extremis," Miller says. "They don't have time to think aloud."

The director and his team devised a new dark age. "All the worst-case scenarios we see in the news come to pass all at once. Economic collapse, power-grid collapse, oil wars, water wars and things we just didn't see coming. There's wholesale organ failure of all the things that glue us together. You jump 45 years into the future. All the coastal cities so far as we know have been razed. Great gangs have marauded like locusts across the land. In the centre of a continent like Australia, there's a new dominance hierarchy, where all the resources are controlled."

Immortan Joe controls artesian water from his citadel and trades with other warlords who run Gas Town, which has the fuel, and the Bullet Farm, which has the weapons.

With computer systems wiped out, the wasteland is filled with whatever can be cobbled together from a more robust technological era. "Everything is found objects," says Miller. Everything on screen, including the wardrobe, weapons, vehicles, dialogue and the way the actors behave, was created from these found objects. Two other rules governed what takes place in the movie. "Just because it's after the apocalypse, it doesn't mean people can't make beautiful things. We see that in early man. The palaeolithics did all that wonderful rock art. In refugee camps in the most impoverished parts of the world, they can make beautiful things. And just because it's the wasteland, it doesn't mean people lose their sense of humour. There's a certain rambunctiousness to the world and the story."

As he talks, editor Margaret Sixel – Miller's partner – arrives in the office. When he praises her "massive brain", she jokes that "together we make the complete person".

He chimes in: "If you can imagine the world's biggest Rubik's Cube, that's what Margie had to deal with."

She chips back: "It takes you three months to view all the material, just watching, before you can do anything – it's the bloody digital cameras they can stick everywhere. Then everyone leaves and the poor editor is left in the cutting room. 'See you later, guys. There's 400 hours. Good luck.' "

The movie has a rapid-cutting style that reflects Miller's view that audiences can process information much quicker than years ago. While Mad Max 2 was made up of 1200 shots, Fury Road has more than twice that many at 2750. "Film language – this relatively new language – has evolved that much in 30 years," says Miller.

What keeps him making movies is the same intense curiosity that once drew him to medicine, a fascination with the power of stories and a passion for new filmmaking technology. "It took us 10 years to get the technology to make Babe talk," he says. "The Happy Feet movies came from seeing motion capture and developing it when [cinematographer] Andrew Lesnie came from Lord of the Rings and showed me the first Gollum motion capture."

Doug Mitchell, who joined what is now called Kennedy Miller Mitchell after Mad Max 2 and took over as producer when Byron Kennedy was killed in a helicopter crash in 1983, says the good doctor's genial nature is deceptive. "You've got to be tough," Mitchell says. "George is very gentle and very humorous and very affable but behind that he's a very capable, strong man. You can't lead a company into a filmmaking venture like this without that."

Back when John Howard was still prime minister, Miller planned to shoot Fury Road in and around Broken Hill in western NSW, with Mel Gibson returning as Max. But shortly before filming in 2003, production stalled due to the looming Iraq War, the rising US dollar, insurance issues and problems with the star's deal.

When the movie was eventually revived – with Miller making two Happy Feet movies in the interim – filming was delayed again when heavy rain caused the desert around Broken Hill to bloom in 2009. And it was delayed again when the desert was still too green in 2010 for a start the following year.

After the first delay, Gibson was no longer young enough (and becoming too controversial) to play the role. Miller wanted to replace him with Heath Ledger until his sudden death in 2008. So the role went to Tom Hardy, best known for Inception and The Dark Knight Rises. "In casting sessions, Tom Hardy walked through the door and I just got the same intense vibe that I got when Mel Gibson first walked through the door," Miller says. They both have "an animal-like charisma".

While Beyond Thunderdome was made with Warner Bros, Miller's unhappy experience trying to make the sci-fi movie Contact with the studio meant Fury Road would be made with Universal Pictures, which had great success with Babe. But after the movie stalled for the first time, it went to 20th Century Fox because of its deal with Gibson. When he dropped out, Warner Bros, with a new executive team, took over the movie.

Without Broken Hill, the filmmakers considered deserts in China and Chile but decided to shoot in Namibia in southern Africa, which had a variety of landscapes, a population that spoke English and enough accommodation for a crew that ranged from 1200 to 1700 during the shoot, plus a cast of 55. But it was prohibitively expensive to ship more than 200 vehicles and all those people across the world. "By the time we got to Namibia, the cost and the additional expense of getting there required us to cut back on what we were going to shoot," Mitchell says. They also found themselves fielding flak from Hollywood executives, who were fearful about what else could go wrong so far from home.

While Miller and his crew wanted to shoot for 150 days, the extra costs meant cutting back to 100 days in the Namibian desert and another 20 days in a South African studio. "The sacrifice was to cut off the start and the end of the film," Mitchell says. "George wisely agreed that was the way to go because at least we could get all the action in the desert, which was what we needed – the essence of the film. We'd find somehow, later on, a way to cope with the problem."

Two units went out to shoot moving vehicles every day – one with Miller directing, the other with stunt co-ordinator and second-unit director Guy Norris at the helm. Along the way, they abandoned plans to shoot the movie in 3D because it was taking too much time, deciding to convert the movie in post-production.

They persevered, making safety a priority as they shot from June to December 2012. From their base in the town of Swakopmund, they had to move a giant tent city six times to shoot in locations that allowed more rugged terrain, canyons and bogs.

Heat was not the only challenge. At times it was so cold the Wives wore overcoats and carried hot water bottles between takes. "I must confess I got massively stressed for a period out there in Africa, where I'd be on the phone at four in the morning to the States," Mitchell says. "There was a lot of noise going on through the film."

Former model Megan Gale, who plays a rifle-toting warrior named Valkyrie, describes the shoot as "completely surreal". "It was just wild," she says. "There were hundreds of guys in character. My first impression
was – everyone says it – it's mad, it's mental, it's just this crazy world that's just full of people who are desperate to survive and are ruthless. It was just a trip to see it on day one."

Gale was so thrilled to be involved that she took on the stunts she could handle safely, including one that involved rolling out of the way of pursuing vehicles after a motorbike crash. "I just had to trust that they would all drive and hit their mark and miss me," she says. "I had to just roll to the left, to the right, to the left, to the right over rocks. That was pretty exhilarating."

Gale says they shot the scene several times for different camera angles and that the expert stunt crew did exactly what they had to do each time. Even working in extreme conditions, Miller still made himself available to discuss dialogue and costumes to help her with the role.

"It was a gruelling shoot," she says. "I came in quite a few months after they'd been there and he was just collected and calm. I never saw him lose his cool, even logistically a lot of things were happening. There's always something that can go wrong, whether it's a car that breaks down or someone's sick or a stunt is not quite working, and he was just so calm."

Miller says shooting stunts "where if it went wrong, it could go horribly wrong" plus the heat, dust and long days in remote locations, were exhausting. "Every day for 120 days was doing heavy-duty action. It was the relentless quality of it that really took its toll."

Security was also an issue, especially with so many actors and the families of crew members who had joined the shoot. A former SAS soldier, John Iles, headed a security team and moonlighted as a warrior named Ace in the movie. "There were a number of burglaries and he was first there," Mitchell says. "John billeted himself near where the Wives were, so if
anything happened, I had an emergency hotline to him to get down and help."

Mitchell takes great pride in completing Fury Road without anyone sustaining serious injuries during filming. "Without patting ourselves on the back, we got through an extensive war in terms of the potential carnage with real vehicles going at speed – massive vehicles – not just one behind the other but in a convoy attacking each other."

If Fury Road is a hit, it will not be the last audiences see of Mad Max. While working on the movie, Miller and co-writer Nico Lathouris came up with two other stories. One was due to be made as a Japanese-style anime but, with a full script written, has been held back as a live-action movie. The other story has been written as a 200-page novella. There are also plans for a Mad Max live-action arena spectacular with producer-director David Atkins.

Clearly as resilient as he is driven, Miller seems calm about what's at stake. A movie made with a budget of $US150 million to $US200 million – and possibly costing more than $US240 million, including government subsidies – will open on the same weekend in every major cinema territory bar Japan and China.

"Our test screenings have gone well," says Miller. "I'm very cautiously hoping for the best but that's not to say that all this effort won't be for naught."

Miller plans some family time – he and Sixel have two sons aged 19 and 14 and he has a 27-year-old daughter, Augusta, with former wife Sandy Gore – but clearly wants to turn more of those ideas that leap to mind crossing roads into movies. "I often say that if I end up in a nursing home staring into the distance, I'll be playing some movie in my head," he says.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Sydney Morning Herald on 30.04.2015

Future shock: It took only minutes for George Miller to be inspired to make Fury Road It took 12 years to bring it to the big screen. Photo Tim Bauer

On the set of Mad Max: Fury Road with director George Miller

Sydney Morning Herald

April 25, 2015

Garry Maddox


The badlands of the latest Mad Max movie have never looked more forbidding. But for director George Miller, it’s a happy homecoming.

Mad Max: George Miller's enduring anti-hero
Thirty years on, the iconic Mad Max franchise has been reimagined by its original creator.The result is an explosive, 'very Australian' modern action movie. George Miller talks to Garry Maddox.

Inside a cavernous sound stage in sweltering heat, a surreal scene is taking place. A band of skinny, shirtless men wearing filthy shorts and bandannas are clambering onto two giant steel turbines. On a command, they begin to pedal. The job of these sorry souls, called Treadmill Rats, is to operate a platform that brings battle vehicles and warriors up to a mountaintop citadel then back down to a desert wasteland.

Milling around nearby are a group of bald youths, also shirtless and wearing combat pants. They are daubed in white paint and marked with a menacing skull tattoo. Called the War Pups, they answer to a masked warlord known as Immortan Joe, who styles himself as a cult leader in the post-apocalyptic future.

Charlize Theron with director George Miller.
Charlize Theron with director George Miller. Photo: Jasin Boland/Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc

While the Treadmill Rats pedal, the War Pups lounge around waiting for their scene. A make-up artist touches up the white paint on one. Another has found a spot in the sun to study a school book.

Watching the action intently on a monitor is George Miller, the acclaimed director who is about to finally finish filming Mad Max: Fury Road at Sydney's Fox Studios.

The former doctor made his name with Mad Max in 1979, then followed up in 1981 with Mad Max 2 (known as The Road Warrior in the US) and Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome in 1985. While he has had many other successes, including the Oscar-winning Happy Feet, the trilogy about a damaged cop roaming the lawless Australian wasteland remains a cinema landmark.

Tom Hardy fires up as Mad Max.
Tom Hardy fires up as Mad Max. Photo: Jasin Boland/Warner Bros. Entertainment

Still one of the most profitable films ever made, the first instalment launched an unknown Mel Gibson to stardom as Max Rockatansky and influenced countless celluloid versions of the post-apocalyptic future. Out of Miller's vivid imagination came such memorable characters as Toecutter, Goose, the Feral Kid, the Gyro Captain, Master Blaster and Aunt Entity, as well as an inspired range of futuristic vehicles.

And there, on the platform the Treadmill Rats have been lowering, is one of the icons of the series – Max's Interceptor, the black V8 muscle car he drove at turbo-charged speed in his battered leather jacket with a cattle dog by his side. Despite the heat, Miller is also wearing a black leather jacket as he directs one of the last of 135 gruelling days on the movie.

"I liked being hot from when I was making the first Mad Max," he says, joking that it might be an attempt to raise his metabolism, or just an idiosyncratic security blanket on set.

Charlize Theron muscles in as Furiosa.
Charlize Theron muscles in as Furiosa. Photo: Jasin Boland/Warner Bros. Entertainment

Miller describes Fury Road as a "wild and operatic" chase movie that is neither a reboot, prequel nor sequel. "It's revisiting the world," he says. "For me, it's revisiting old friends."

Pursued by Immortan Joe's marauding hordes, a one-armed female warrior named Imperator Furiosa, played by Charlize Theron, drives a giant tanker carrying a precious cargo – his five young wives – through the wasteland. Along the way, she gets help from Max, played this time by Tom Hardy.

In its 114 minutes, Fury Road features no less than 300 stunts, all performed for real on set rather than simulated in a studio with digital effects. "Old school", Miller calls it. There are enough crashes, jumps, tumbles and explosions for producer Doug Mitchell to describe the movie as "Mad Max 2 on steroids".

Future shock: It took only minutes for George Miller to be inspired to make Fury Road. It took 12 years to bring it to the big screen. Photo: Tim Bauer

As epic as that sounds, the movie's production has been even more so. Over 12 years, Miller has had to persevere during three major delays, with three actors down to play Max – including Heath Ledger until his tragic death – a switch of continents, three different Hollywood studios and enough financial challenges to sink just about any other movie.

And with up to 10 cameras shooting the action, Fury Road has been assembled from a huge 480 hours of footage. Back in the sound stage, it's time for a shot that has two War Pups reacting to Max's arrival off screen. They are joined by one of Immortan Joe's sons, Corpus Colossus (Quentin Kenihan), in a harness seat.

"Can we ask Jamie to just drop his head a little
bit," Miller says calmly into a microphone. "Crouch down. Not too far forward, Riley. And we're in action. The vehicles arrive. We're watching Max."

Around the corner, production designer Colin Gibson prepares for another shot. Up a ladder, he is painting a slogan on the wall of what looks like a cave: "There's a new world coming … she's already on her way."

This is the mountaintop vault where Immortan Joe keeps The Wives, played by a glamorous group of actresses and models: Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Abbey Lee Kershaw, Courtney Eaton, Zoe Kravitz and Riley Keough.

Gibson describes the cave as a combined harem, library, crèche and museum for all the flotsam and jetsam of history. "In a world of horror, this is an attempt to keep all the other bits of civilisation you don't worry about anywhere else," he says. "There's music, art, literature, plants."

A short walk away on the busy lot – Angelina Jolie is directing Unbroken and Russell Crowe is shooting The Water Diviner on other sound stages – Mitchell and Gibson show off more
of the dystopian world. Their team
has built 150 metres of tunnels, where Max is held prisoner and treated as a blood donor.

In another corner stands the truck that Furiosa pilots across the desert. Called the War Rig – one of three built for the movie – it looks like a battered dusty petrol tanker with chunks of two other vehicles welded on top, spiked wheels and a fuel-pod trailer.

"For George, this was Stagecoach, this was John Ford," says Gibson in a reference to the classic John Wayne western that takes place on the move. "There may be 10 million stunts happening out there but this is the stage for the drama. The beating heart."

Upstairs in the elegant Metro Theatre in Potts Point, three kilometres away, is an office with a rich history that dates back to some of the famous miniseries Kennedy Miller made in the 1980s. It was the prime minister's office in The Dismissal, a ship's bar in Bodyline, and a prison in The Cowra Breakout. Now it's Mad Max Central. George Miller's office.

With only weeks until Fury Road opens worldwide on May 14, the director is still flat out finishing all the different versions required for a Hollywood blockbuster: subtitled, dubbed, IMAX and various sound and 3D formats.

Beneath three whirring ceiling fans, signs of the movie are everywhere. There are large black models of the War Rig and another vehicle called the Doof Wagon, which urges warriors into battle in the movie with musician Iota playing a flame-throwing guitar. Elsewhere, some of the ornate steering wheels worshipped by War Boys, grown-up War Pups, hang on a wall, and a pile of movie posters are waiting to be approved.

For much of the production, the office was lined with 3500 storyboard panels that outline what happens shot by shot in Fury Road. "That's how we conceived the film," says Miller.

A genial figure behind glasses, the 70-year-old has long been one of the country's finest filmmakers, telling serious, thoughtful stories in a variety of genres.

Since forming Kennedy Miller with the late Byron Kennedy in the 1970s, George Miller has directed and mostly produced The Dismissal, The Witches of Eastwick, Lorenzo's Oil, Babe: Pig in the City, two Happy Feet films and the Mad Max trilogy. He also produced Babe (which he co-wrote), Bodyline, Vietnam, The Year My Voice Broke, Dead Calm and Bangkok Hilton. And he's done it all while living in Sydney rather than moving full-time to Los Angeles.

The four-time Oscar nominee – he was a winner for Happy Feet – traces his intense imaginative life back to a childhood based around play, without television, as one of four sons of Kytherian Greek immigrant parents in the Queensland town of Chinchilla.

After studying medicine at the University of NSW with his twin brother John, then working at St Vincent's Hospital in Sydney, Miller was already making short films when he met Kennedy at a University of Melbourne film workshop.

He worked as a locum while they shot Mad Max around Melbourne, with the story influenced by seeing the damage caused by the country's car culture: the "death by autocide" in rural Queensland, and then dealing with the trauma as an emergency doctor.

"Ever since I was a kid, I've basically lived the imaginative life," Miller says. "I'm pretty hard-wired for that now. So these characters you've come up with, they live like imaginary characters in your head."

One of these characters, Max Rockatansky, unexpectedly jumped back to life as Miller crossed a street in Los Angeles in 1998. "Halfway across, this idea popped into my head," he says. "I thought, 'Oh my, that's a Mad Max movie.' By the time I got to the other side of the road, I said, 'There's no way I'm going to go anywhere near that because I've already done three.'

"Two years after that, I was on a plane flying across the Pacific during the night – from Los Angeles to Sydney – and the whole movie played in my head. It was in a rough form and it was very misty but the scenes played.

"By the time I landed, I told everyone, 'I think we're going to make another Mad Max movie.' "

Influenced by a love of silent movies and Alfred Hitchcock's theory about making films so people in other countries do not need to read subtitles, Miller conceived Fury Road as a helter-skelter action movie told largely through visuals rather than words.

After the apocalypse, there are no books, internet or TV, and language has become purely functional. So Max speaks just 41 lines and Furiosa less than 100. "There's very specific language in Fury Road but people don't do it recreationally and they don't think aloud because they're in extremis," Miller says. "They don't have time to think aloud."

The director and his team devised a new dark age. "All the worst-case scenarios we see in the news come to pass all at once. Economic collapse, power-grid collapse, oil wars, water wars and things we just didn't see coming. There's wholesale organ failure of all the things that glue us together. You jump 45 years into the future. All the coastal cities so far as we know have been razed. Great gangs have marauded like locusts across the land. In the centre of a continent like Australia, there's a new dominance hierarchy, where all the resources are controlled."

Immortan Joe controls artesian water from his citadel and trades with other warlords who run Gas Town, which has the fuel, and the Bullet Farm, which has the weapons.

With computer systems wiped out, the wasteland is filled with whatever can be cobbled together from a more robust technological era. "Everything is found objects," says Miller. Everything on screen, including the wardrobe, weapons, vehicles, dialogue and the way the actors behave, was created from these found objects. Two other rules governed what takes place in the movie. "Just because it's after the apocalypse, it doesn't mean people can't make beautiful things. We see that in early man. The palaeolithics did all that wonderful rock art. In refugee camps in the most impoverished parts of the world, they can make beautiful things. And just because it's the wasteland, it doesn't mean people lose their sense of humour. There's a certain rambunctiousness to the world and the story."

As he talks, editor Margaret Sixel – Miller's partner – arrives in the office. When he praises her "massive brain", she jokes that "together we make the complete person".

He chimes in: "If you can imagine the world's biggest Rubik's Cube, that's what Margie had to deal with."

She chips back: "It takes you three months to view all the material, just watching, before you can do anything – it's the bloody digital cameras they can stick everywhere. Then everyone leaves and the poor editor is left in the cutting room. 'See you later, guys. There's 400 hours. Good luck.' "

The movie has a rapid-cutting style that reflects Miller's view that audiences can process information much quicker than years ago. While Mad Max 2 was made up of 1200 shots, Fury Road has more than twice that many at 2750. "Film language – this relatively new language – has evolved that much in 30 years," says Miller.

What keeps him making movies is the same intense curiosity that once drew him to medicine, a fascination with the power of stories and a passion for new filmmaking technology. "It took us 10 years to get the technology to make Babe talk," he says. "The Happy Feet movies came from seeing motion capture and developing it when [cinematographer] Andrew Lesnie came from Lord of the Rings and showed me the first Gollum motion capture."

Doug Mitchell, who joined what is now called Kennedy Miller Mitchell after Mad Max 2 and took over as producer when Byron Kennedy was killed in a helicopter crash in 1983, says the good doctor's genial nature is deceptive. "You've got to be tough," Mitchell says. "George is very gentle and very humorous and very affable but behind that he's a very capable, strong man. You can't lead a company into a filmmaking venture like this without that."

Back when John Howard was still prime minister, Miller planned to shoot Fury Road in and around Broken Hill in western NSW, with Mel Gibson returning as Max. But shortly before filming in 2003, production stalled due to the looming Iraq War, the rising US dollar, insurance issues and problems with the star's deal.

When the movie was eventually revived – with Miller making two Happy Feet movies in the interim – filming was delayed again when heavy rain caused the desert around Broken Hill to bloom in 2009. And it was delayed again when the desert was still too green in 2010 for a start the following year.

After the first delay, Gibson was no longer young enough (and becoming too controversial) to play the role. Miller wanted to replace him with Heath Ledger until his sudden death in 2008. So the role went to Tom Hardy, best known for Inception and The Dark Knight Rises. "In casting sessions, Tom Hardy walked through the door and I just got the same intense vibe that I got when Mel Gibson first walked through the door," Miller says. They both have "an animal-like charisma".

While Beyond Thunderdome was made with Warner Bros, Miller's unhappy experience trying to make the sci-fi movie Contact with the studio meant Fury Road would be made with Universal Pictures, which had great success with Babe. But after the movie stalled for the first time, it went to 20th Century Fox because of its deal with Gibson. When he dropped out, Warner Bros, with a new executive team, took over the movie.

Without Broken Hill, the filmmakers considered deserts in China and Chile but decided to shoot in Namibia in southern Africa, which had a variety of landscapes, a population that spoke English and enough accommodation for a crew that ranged from 1200 to 1700 during the shoot, plus a cast of 55. But it was prohibitively expensive to ship more than 200 vehicles and all those people across the world. "By the time we got to Namibia, the cost and the additional expense of getting there required us to cut back on what we were going to shoot," Mitchell says. They also found themselves fielding flak from Hollywood executives, who were fearful about what else could go wrong so far from home.

While Miller and his crew wanted to shoot for 150 days, the extra costs meant cutting back to 100 days in the Namibian desert and another 20 days in a South African studio. "The sacrifice was to cut off the start and the end of the film," Mitchell says. "George wisely agreed that was the way to go because at least we could get all the action in the desert, which was what we needed – the essence of the film. We'd find somehow, later on, a way to cope with the problem."

Two units went out to shoot moving vehicles every day – one with Miller directing, the other with stunt co-ordinator and second-unit director Guy Norris at the helm. Along the way, they abandoned plans to shoot the movie in 3D because it was taking too much time, deciding to convert the movie in post-production.

They persevered, making safety a priority as they shot from June to December 2012. From their base in the town of Swakopmund, they had to move a giant tent city six times to shoot in locations that allowed more rugged terrain, canyons and bogs.

Heat was not the only challenge. At times it was so cold the Wives wore overcoats and carried hot water bottles between takes. "I must confess I got massively stressed for a period out there in Africa, where I'd be on the phone at four in the morning to the States," Mitchell says. "There was a lot of noise going on through the film."

Former model Megan Gale, who plays a rifle-toting warrior named Valkyrie, describes the shoot as "completely surreal". "It was just wild," she says. "There were hundreds of guys in character. My first impression
was – everyone says it – it's mad, it's mental, it's just this crazy world that's just full of people who are desperate to survive and are ruthless. It was just a trip to see it on day one."

Gale was so thrilled to be involved that she took on the stunts she could handle safely, including one that involved rolling out of the way of pursuing vehicles after a motorbike crash. "I just had to trust that they would all drive and hit their mark and miss me," she says. "I had to just roll to the left, to the right, to the left, to the right over rocks. That was pretty exhilarating."

Gale says they shot the scene several times for different camera angles and that the expert stunt crew did exactly what they had to do each time. Even working in extreme conditions, Miller still made himself available to discuss dialogue and costumes to help her with the role.

"It was a gruelling shoot," she says. "I came in quite a few months after they'd been there and he was just collected and calm. I never saw him lose his cool, even logistically a lot of things were happening. There's always something that can go wrong, whether it's a car that breaks down or someone's sick or a stunt is not quite working, and he was just so calm."

Miller says shooting stunts "where if it went wrong, it could go horribly wrong" plus the heat, dust and long days in remote locations, were exhausting. "Every day for 120 days was doing heavy-duty action. It was the relentless quality of it that really took its toll."

Security was also an issue, especially with so many actors and the families of crew members who had joined the shoot. A former SAS soldier, John Iles, headed a security team and moonlighted as a warrior named Ace in the movie. "There were a number of burglaries and he was first there," Mitchell says. "John billeted himself near where the Wives were, so if
anything happened, I had an emergency hotline to him to get down and help."

Mitchell takes great pride in completing Fury Road without anyone sustaining serious injuries during filming. "Without patting ourselves on the back, we got through an extensive war in terms of the potential carnage with real vehicles going at speed – massive vehicles – not just one behind the other but in a convoy attacking each other."

If Fury Road is a hit, it will not be the last audiences see of Mad Max. While working on the movie, Miller and co-writer Nico Lathouris came up with two other stories. One was due to be made as a Japanese-style anime but, with a full script written, has been held back as a live-action movie. The other story has been written as a 200-page novella. There are also plans for a Mad Max live-action arena spectacular with producer-director David Atkins.

Clearly as resilient as he is driven, Miller seems calm about what's at stake. A movie made with a budget of $US150 million to $US200 million – and possibly costing more than $US240 million, including government subsidies – will open on the same weekend in every major cinema territory bar Japan and China.

"Our test screenings have gone well," says Miller. "I'm very cautiously hoping for the best but that's not to say that all this effort won't be for naught."

Miller plans some family time – he and Sixel have two sons aged 19 and 14 and he has a 27-year-old daughter, Augusta, with former wife Sandy Gore – but clearly wants to turn more of those ideas that leap to mind crossing roads into movies. "I often say that if I end up in a nursing home staring into the distance, I'll be playing some movie in my head," he says.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Barbara Zantiotis on 24.04.2015

Zantiotis family & their Irish friends

My father Stephen, an avid photographer in his younger years, took this photo at Bulli Tops in about 1949. He also processed and developed it.
Left to right - His mother Katina (Moulos/Mallos), Mr & Mrs Jordan, his father Peter and his brother Arthur (Archie).
My grandmother was from Logothetianika and my grandfather was from Agia Anastasia. My dad and his brother were born in Australia.

Photos > Diaspora Vintage Portraits/ People

submitted by Kytherian Art World on 01.05.2015

Alexia Psaltis

Art Student gets subsumed

By HELEN GREGORY

Newcastle Herald

February 10th, 2015

Reproduced with permission of The Newcastle Herald ©Copyright 2015
.

Alexia is the daughter of Peter and Sheri Psaltis, who live in Newcastle, and granddaughter of the late George Psaltis and Alexandra Psaltis (nee, Feros), of Gilgandra, and later Earlwood.

ALEXIA Psaltis’ hair-raising expeditions squeezing through fences to photograph abandoned industrial sites have paid off, culminating in an eye-catching piece selected to hang in the Art Gallery of NSW.

The 2014 dux of Hunter School of the Performing Arts is the woman behind Subsumed, which has been selected for Artexpress, a showcase of the best works of art completed by NSW students as part of last year’s Higher School Certificate.

Of the 219 works selected for exhibitions in galleries across the state, only 37 have been selected for inclusion in the exclusive Art Gallery of NSW exhibit.

‘‘When I heard, I was jumping around in excitement, it was the best feeling,’’ Ms Psaltis said.

‘‘Out of all of my HSC achievements, that’s the one that really stood out to me.’’

Ms Psaltis’ work explores the paradox of Newcastle’s heavy industry sitting alongside its pristine coast.

It comprises six surrealistic portraits of female figures, representing Mother Nature, being consumed by industrial structures, objects and landscapes that convey destruction and invasion.

Each portrait includes layers of hundreds of photos she captured from both active and abandoned industrial sites including Kooragang Island, Cockatoo Island and around Hexham and Maitland.

‘‘I visited quite a few deserted and unused machinery yards where there was equipment that had rusted and been left to rot,’’ she said.

‘‘It was a bit scary going into the abandoned sites, but I just squeezed through holes in fences.

‘‘The portraits represent how physical, spiritual and psychological identity is threatened by industrialisation, which removes individual human inspiration and imagination.

‘‘We now face a future of surreal, stunted landscapes.’’

Ms Psaltis also completed major works in English Extension II, Music and Society and Culture and was named on the All-round Achievers list for receiving marks in the highest band possible for 10 or more units.

She began her combined law and arts degree at the University of Newcastle in February 2015.

Artexpress at the Art Gallery of NSW will open to the public from Thursday.

The remaining works selected for Artexpress will be on display in venues across the state throughout the remainder of the year.

The exhibition will come to Maitland Regional Art Gallery between September 11 and November 1.

Rationale of the artwork

Alexia Psaltis
Hunter School of the Performing Arts

SUBSUMED

Photomeita
Prints to Breathing Colour Velvet paper

Subsumed is a series of portraits representing the threat to physical, spiritual and psychological identity from rampant industrialisation. The portraits identify how the dominance of industry removes individual human inspiration and imagination. We face a future of surreal, stunted landscapes populated by impaired humanity, symbolised by the replacement of human physicality with machinery. I photographed all the images of industrial structures, objects and landscapes that convey destruction and invasion. I layered these eclectic images with the human portraits to represent the unchecked, pervasive presence of industrial processes in our lives. We are consumed by industry and its detritus.

What is ArtExpress?

ARTEXPRESS is an annual exhibition of artworks created by students from government and non-government schools for the Higher School Certificate Examination in Visual Arts. The works demonstrate exceptional quality across a broad range of subject matter, approaches, styles and media including painting, photography, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, documented forms, textiles and fibre, ceramics, digital animation, film and video, and collections of works.

ARTEXPRESS represents the high standards and diversity achieved by Year 12 Visual Arts students in New South Wales schools.

The continued excellence of the annual ARTEXPRESS exhibition is the outcome of a rigorous Visual Arts curriculum that builds on study from Kindergarten through to Year 12.

Visual Arts is part of the core curriculum in primary school and junior high school and a popular elective for the Higher School Certificate examination.

Student assessment in Visual Arts for the Higher School Certificate is based on submission of a Body of Work plus a written examination. Each students develops their submission through a process, recorded in a Visual Arts Process Diary, which reflects the problem-solving approach of the practising artist.

Equally important especially at senior level, is critical study and art history which plays a crucial role in informing the artworks produced by students.

The works chosen for ARTEXPRESS are a representative selection from over 12,000 examination submissions and reflect not only the talent of the individual students, but also the strength of the curriculum and excellence of Visual Arts teaching in New South Wales schools.

ARTEXPRESS is shown at 9 metropolitan and regional venues in NSW.