French-Austrian Cultural Exchange: Costa-Gavras Honors Vienna with an Inspiring Visit

Lifestyle & TravelMore+ ♦ Published: December 27, 2023; 18:21 ♦ (Vindobona)

Vienna was enriched by a visit from the renowned Franco-Greek director Costa-Gavras. Accompanied by his wife Michèle, the award-winning cineaste enjoyed a day full of cultural highlights in the Austrian capital. The visit concluded with a meeting between Costa-Gavras and leading representatives of the Austrian film at the French Embassy.

Costa-Gavras is a Greek-French film director, screenwriter and film producer. / Picture: © Wikimedia Commons; Georges Biard, CC BY-SA 3.0 (

The visit kicked off with a stimulating discussion at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna (MDW), moderated by journalist Gabriele Flossmann. Students had the rare opportunity to discuss the political nature of his films, his personal political commitment, and the future of cinema with Costa-Gavras. This exchange offered valuable insights into the world of thought of the renowned filmmaker.

In collaboration with the Institut Français d'Autriche, Costa-Gavras' latest film "ADULTS IN THE ROOM" (2019) was screened at the Austrian Film Museum, the Austrian counterpart of the Cinémathèque française, of which Costa-Gavras is president. The film, which was shown to a large and enthusiastic audience, was very well received.

During an audience discussion with Michael Loebenstein, Director of the Austrian Film Museum, Costa-Gavras emphasized the need to preserve cinema culture. His words underlined the importance of cinema as a place for cultural encounters and as a medium for reflecting on social issues.

The visit concluded with a meeting between Costa-Gavras and leading figures from the Austrian film world at the French Embassy. This meeting served to exchange ideas and deepen relations between the filmmakers.

Thanks from the French ambassador

The French Ambassador to Austria, Gilles Pécout, thanked Costa-Gavras and his wife Michèle as well as the organizers of the Austrian Film Museum and the MDW University of Music and Performing Arts. The day was seen as a significant contribution to the preservation of film culture and the appreciation of French cultural heritage.

Costa-Gavras' visit to Vienna was more than just a cultural event; it was a lively exchange that emphasized the deep connection between film, politics, and society. His commitment to the preservation of cinema culture and his contribution to the film world remains an inspiration for film enthusiasts and cultural workers worldwide.

About Costa-Gavras

Costa-Gavras, born on February 12, 1933 in Greece, is a Greek-French director, screenwriter and producer known for his politically engaged films. After his family moved to Athens in 1945 and his father lost his job during the Greek Civil War, Costa-Gavras emigrated to France in 1954 and acquired French citizenship in 1956. He studied at the Sorbonne and the Institut des hautes études cinématographiques before beginning his career as a director in 1965.

His best-known works include films such as "Z", "The Confession", "The Invisible Rebellion" and "Missing". Costa-Gavras, also director of the Cinémathèque française, has made a name for himself internationally with his works that address political grievances.

French Embassy Vienna