BENEATH THE OLIVE TREE
USA / Greece | 2014 | Documentary | 82 Minutes
Director: Stavroula Toska
Writers: Sophia Antonini & Stavroula Toska
Producers: Sophia Antonini & Stavroula Toska
Cinematographer: Sophia Antonini
Editor: Lauren Beckett Jackson
Composer: Tao Zervas
Narrated by Olympia Dukakis
Synopsis: This deeply-moving, personal, and eye-openng documentary focuses on the true stories of women exiled to Trikeri Island; the biggest women’s concentration camp during the Greek Civil War (1946-49). Years after the camps were phased out, seven notebooks written in secrecy and buried under a tree have surfaced, revealing the truth about their suffering and their survival. The women’s journals, and Toska’s film, bring to light some history the Greek government continues to manipulate and repress.
Stavroula Toska was raised in Sindos, a small town in Northern Greece. She wanted to leave home and move to New York ever since she can remember.
After making her family happy by getting a degree in Marketing and Public Relations she decided to move to Athens to follow her true passion, to study and pursue a career as an actor. That made her family very unhappy until they saw her on tv co-starring in two of the most successful soap operas in Greek tv history. Soon after she booked a one way ticket to the Big Apple where she studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. She co-starred in a couple of low budget films, did some off-Broadway shows and then she met Olympia Dukakis. Four years later she is here with her directorial debut, Beneath the Olive Tree, and Olympia Dukakis serving as the Narrator and Executive Producer
Stavroula co-founded Orama Pictures in 2010 with Sophia Antonini. She recently produced Livin' The Dream, a web series written & directed by award winning filmmaker Kim Spurlock and is set to premiere at the Los Angeles Web Fest in April. She is currently working on two feature projects and is developing a one hour drama series based on true events. She is a proud member of the Film Fatales, a collective of female filmmakers committed to working together and supporting each other in making movies by and about women.