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LCIFF Profiles: Chris Moraitis

LCIFF Profiles: Chris Moraitis

Christos Liakouris (pseudonym Chris Moraitis) Film Director & Producer of  PET .

Christos Liakouris (pseudonym Chris Moraitis) Film Director & Producer of PET.

It's that time of year again when we start highlighting the directors of the films that will play at the November fest.  In anticipation of the Third LCIFF, we begin our profiles with the director of one of the fest's most enigmatic and powerful films: Greek filmmaker Chris Moraitis, director of PET.  

In PET, Dimitris (a 10 years old boy) is the only child of a rich family. The only person that took care of him, his grandma, is dead. Now his only companion is his pet guinea pig. When Dimitris’ parents decide a cruel future for him, Dimitris in order to survive he “cripples” the most pure side of himself. PET: “A film about childhood and the time you have to leave behind your innocence in order to survive.”

You can check out the film's trailer here and its Facebook page here.  Also, a recent Huffington Post article about the film's Oscar hopes can be found here.

LCIFF intern Anthony Scalzo spoke with the director about this strange and potent work:

LCIFF: Does this short film reflect your background at all? How were you inspired to do this short film?

Chris Moraitis (CM): No, PET its not a biographical film, although [it] has many of my unconscious aspects.  I committed to that story because it concerns me very strongly how a child can [be] mentally deformed due to the treatment of his parents. As I am also concerned of the consequences of materialism. That "race" of demonstrating wealth and power, for the sake of which we losing ourselves and our children. We lose the moment... and the future.

The eponymous star of  PET .

The eponymous star of PET.

LCIFF: It was interesting how you never showed the parent's faces. Was that a conscious decision made prior to shooting? And why did you decide to shoot that way? 

CM: Not showing the parents faces was a conscious decision made prior to shooting. I chose to do that for three reasons. First because I am not talking about two specific parents but about parents in general. Second, I am not showing their eyes because these people are "Blind". And the third reason is that in the scene of the living room I wanted to present a male-female "monster" shape.

LCIFF: What other Directors do you draw inspiration from? 

CM: I can't think [of] a director that inspires me in a determinant way. But I can think some directors that I admire their work. David Lynch, Paul Thomas Anderson, Sam Mendes and David Fincher are some of them.