A new documentary called “Hello Anatolia” followed the journey of Greek-American filmmaker Chrysovalantis Stamelos as he tries to reconnect with his ancestry and long-lost history in Izmir, Turkey.
90 years ago the ethnic population exchange between Greece and Turkey led to a mass exodus of Greeks from the Turkish coast. Stamelos’ family was part of that exchange.
Stamelos was always curious about the stories he had heard growing up about old Smyrna and Asia Minor, and he kept feeling a connection to the homeland of his ancestors.
So one day, he decided to leave the corporate world he was in to move to Turkey and discover his roots.
This film is a documentation of that journey, of Stamelos’ reconnection to his past through the exploration of Izmir’s neighborhoods, interviews with Greeks in Turkey today, and an investigation into the art and culture of the region.
Stamelos’ goal was to “break down barriers between two cultures with a history of feuding, as well as build a bridge from the Aegean to the US.”
After receiving international acclaim at various festivals, the film just became available online on Vimeo On Demand. Follow this man’s epic journeys into the history of not only Greeks in Turkey, but the overlapping history of two cultures and nations.