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PRODUCTIONS  >  Feature Films  >  Hard Goodbyes: My Father Story, Recognition, Credits | Photos | Director's CV, Filmography
Poster of the film

Penny Panayotopoulou, "HARD GOODBYES: MY FATHER"

Elias, a ten year-old boy who lives in Athens in the late '60s, suddenly loses his father. The members of the family try, each in his own particular way, to deal with the unexpected event... except for the boy. He is waiting for him to return from one of his usual business trips. He continues to play their favorite games with him, acting out both roles of the game. He is absolutely certain that his father will return, so they can both watch the American landing on the moon for the first time on television. The moon landing takes place. And... so does Elias who takes his final leave of his father for the first time. Only then he realizes that he has been left completely alone. At first he gets angry but in the end he understands. He grows up abruptly. A new era begins for young Elias.


    • Leopard for Best Actor (Giorgos Karayannis, 9 years old)
    • Ecumenical Jury Prize - Special Mention
  • 43rd International Thessaloniki Film Festival, 2002:
    • FIPRESCI Prize
    • Best Actor Award (Christos Stergioglou)
    • Greek Film Critics' Prize (Penny Panayotopoulou)
  • Greek State Cinema Awards, 2002:
    • Best Debut-Film Director award (Penny Panayotopoulou)
    • Second Prize for Fiction Film (Producer: Costas Lambropoulos; Director: Penny Panayotopoulou)
  • 5th Olympia International Film Festival for Children and Young People, Greece:
    • Children's Jury Award for Best Feature Film
  • 19ο Mons International Film Festival of Love:
    • RTBF Prize
    • Coup de Coeur du Jury
  • 1st International Film Festival of Sale (Morocco), 2002:
    • Best Screenplay Award
  • 13th St Louis International Film Festival:
    • Interfaith Award
  • Toronto International Film Festival, 2002, screening
  • Chicago International Film Festival, 2002, screening
  • Greek Film Festival, Sydney, 2003, screening
  • Trieste Film Festival (Greek Tribute), Italy, 2009, screening
  • Cine Odyssee, Strasbourg, 2008, screening
  • European Film Festival, Singapore, 2009, screening
  • Panorama of Greek Cinema (Avalon Theatre), Washington, 2011, screening
  • European Union Film Festival, Beijing, 2012, screening


Directed byPenny Panayotopoulou
ScreenplayPenny Panayotopoulou
CinematographyDimitris Katsaitis
EditingPetar Markovic, Angelos Angelopoulos
Art DirectorLily Kendaka
Sets / CostumesAurelien Leriche
Sound RecordingNikos Papadimitriou
CastIoanna Tsirigouli, Giorgos Karayannis, Despo Diamantidou, Stelios Mainas, Christos Stergioglou, Christos Bougiotas
Executive ProducerYorgos Kyriakos
ProducersCostas Lambropoulos, Thanassis Karathanos, Penny Panayotopoulou
ProductionCL Productions, Twenty Twenty Vision, Penny Panayotopoulou
Theater ReleaseDecember 27, 2002
2002, 35mm, color, 113', Dolby Digital