Greek Government to Investigate Film with Acropolis Sex Scene

The film's creators say the project is "about the desire and need to live in the way that we want."
Greek Government to Investigate Film with Acropolis Sex Scene
Greece's Ministry of Culture has launched an investigation into a film that features sex scenes shot at the Acropolis of Athens.

Per the Associated Press, the 36-minute film Departhenon, which was released in December, features "several explicit scenes" with both male and female actors whose identities are concealed.

In a statement, the Culture Ministry shared that they were alerted to Departhenon by journalists inquiring about the material shot at the ancient citadel. AP reports that the scene at the Acropolis shows two men having sex in the middle in a circle formed by the other actors, while visitors to the site can be seen in the shot walking close by.

"The archeological site of the Acropolis is not suitable for any kind of activism or other activity which would cause offence and displays disrespect for the monument," the ministry said in a statement, adding that they did not give permission to the filmmakers to shoot at the location.

Departhenon's creators, who have remained anonymous, explain in a statement that their film is "artwork that is also a political action," writing of sexual expression, "We will be living eros and sexuality just as we wish and we will be defending the public existence and coexistence of all sexualities that do not violate the self-determination of our bodies."

Of their chosen shoot location, they write, "the choice of the Parthenon as a place is not a random one. It is for many a budge of nationalism, worshipping of antiquity, patriarchy, commercialization, mass culture and social appropriateness among others," adding, "It would be wrong... if somebody believed that the main goal of this film is reaction. It is more about the desire and need to live in the way that we want."

"We do not see anything strange or unnatural in what we do. To us, this is the natural development of our casual flow," they continue. "Sensuality – let's not forget the ancient greek sensuality and ecstasis, the statues were not white, they had many and vivid colours and designs — contact, correlation between hu(wo)man bodies, regardless of different characteristics, be it in private or in public. We are looking for these things. Even more now that we live in a period of isolation, alienation of hu(wo)man relations, the relocation of our relations to virtual and noetic worlds behind screens depriving us of sensual realization, substantial communication and coexistence in totality."

Spyros Bibilas, the president of the Greek Actors' Association, described the film to TV network Antenna [via AP] as shameful, sharing, "You can't do everything in the name of activism. In fact, I don't consider this to be activism. As a Greek, I feel ashamed."

Departhenon can be viewed and downloaded here.