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Costa-Gavras

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Z: The Criterion Collection... A pulse-pounding political thriller, Greek expatriate director Costa-Gavras's Z... more info $39.95was $39.95 Buy Now



Also Known As: Costa Gavras Died:
Born: February 13, 1933 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Greece Profession: director, screenwriter, actor, producer, ballet dancer, assistant director

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

One of the most politically minded and passionate filmmakers of the late 20th century, Greek director Costa-Gavras assailed the forces of corruption, exploitation and power gone wrong in such celebrated films as "Z" (1969), "Missing" (1982) and "Music Box" (1989). Gavras' childhood, which saw his father - a hero for the Greek Resistance in World War II - stand accused of Communism by a totalitarian military junta, fueled the intensity of his best work, which took aim at global forces whom he considered conspiring to crush freedom of thought and liberty for the common man. He received Oscars for "Z" and "Missing," but found himself something of an outcast after 1983's "Hanna K." (1983), which was perceived as pro-Palestinian. Though his work was seen mostly in Europe after 1997, his best films preserved his status as a major figure in international cinema, and a staunch supporter of human rights.

One of the most politically minded and passionate filmmakers of the late 20th century, Greek director Costa-Gavras assailed the forces of corruption, exploitation and power gone wrong in such celebrated films as "Z" (1969), "Missing" (1982) and "Music Box" (1989). Gavras' childhood, which saw his father - a hero for the Greek Resistance in World War II - stand accused of Communism by a totalitarian military junta, fueled the intensity of his best work, which took aim at global forces whom he considered conspiring to crush freedom of thought and liberty for the common man. He received Oscars for "Z" and "Missing," but found himself something of an outcast after 1983's "Hanna K." (1983), which was perceived as pro-Palestinian. Though his work was seen mostly in Europe after 1997, his best films preserved his status as a major figure in international cinema, and a staunch supporter of human rights.

Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
2.
3.
  Amen (2002) Director
4.
  Mad City (1997) Director
5.
  Lumiere Et Compagnie (1996) Featured Director
6.
  Propos de Nice, La Suite, A (1995) Director ("Les Kankobales)
7.
  Minor Apocalypse, The (1993) Director
8.
  Contre l'oubli (1992) Director
9.
  Music Box (1989) Director
10.
  Betrayed (1988) Director

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Burke and Hare (2011)
3.
 Stupids, The (1996) Gas Station Guy
4.
 Spies Like Us (1985) Tadzhik Highway Patrol
5.
 Madame Rosa (1978) Ramon
6.
 Les Deux Memoires (1974) Voice
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1959:
First feature as assistant director, Yves Allegret's "L'ambitieuse"
1965:
Feature directing debut, "The Sleeping Car Murders"
1969:
Received two Oscar nominations (Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay) for "Z"
1973:
Made commericals for TV-Hachette
1977:
Film acting debut in "La vie devant soi/Madame Rosa"
1982:
First US-produced film, "Missing"; won Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay (shared with Donald Stewart)
1982:
Took over directorship of Cinematheque Francais
1985:
Acted in John Landis' "Spies Like Us", portraying a Tadzhic Highway Patrolman
1988:
First collaboration with screenwriter Joe Eszterhas, "Betrayed"
1989:
Reteamed with Eszterhas for "Music Box"
1992:
One of 30 French filmmakers who delivered their short pleas on behalf of people who had suffered human rights violations in the documentary "Lest We Forget"
1997:
"Mad City" disappeared quickly from theaters
2002:
Engendered controversy in Europe with "Amen.", a drama about two men, real-life German soldier Kurt Gerstein and a fictionalized priest, who attempt to warn the world about the Nazis' plan to exterminate Jews during WWII
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Sorbonne, University of Paris: -
Institut des Hautes Etudes Cinematographiques: -

Notes

In 1995 Costa-Gavras received the Irene Diamond Lifetime Achievement Award for commitment to human rights. "It's a huge honor because I believe the organizations taking care of human rights are the people I completely trust more than any other ethical movement. The way they work, the reasons for which they do it; not for money or career, just for human rights." --Costa-Gavras to Daily News, June 16, 1995.

"For a little Greek immigrant who came from nothing, I feel I've been extrememly lucky. I've been a director for 30 years, doing exactly what I want to do. I still can't believe it. I think one day someone will say it's all been a mistake." --Costa-Gavras in New York Post, October 29, 1997.

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Michelle Ray. Model. Married in 1967.

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