10th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival
- Images of the 21st Century
March 7-16, 2008



The Press Conference cycle of the 10th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival began on Sunday, March 9, at the Green Room of the Olympion, with the director Manos Papadakis, who directed A Hole in the Water. The film deals with the subject of the construction of the Thessaloniki underwater tunnel.

As the director noted, the citizens of Thessaloniki are not informed enough on the subject of the underwater tunnel, and this is why he wants to cover the gap through his documentary. Speaking about the law suits which have been made against the construction which will reach trial soon, Manos Papadakis stressed that there have been no developments to date. “The law suits are not being tried because they are involved with the Zahopoulos issue, who had approved the demolition of certain buildings characterized as ‘preservable’ for this purpose. So we first have to wait for the matter to be resolved and then the trials can begin”, the director said.

Answering a question on whether citizen have the power to react and have their voices heard, Mr. Papadakis noted: “Of course they do, with the prerequisite that they become aware of their position regarding matters. We must all understand the problem, because we are also responsible, when, for instance, we use a car in the wrong way. We are personally responsible. If we stop using cars without reason and use Mass Transit, there would be no need for an underwater tunnel or other similar works”.

Commenting on the fact that there is no retort to a documentary, the director explained that during the process off collecting the documentary material he approached all the organizations concerned, but they refused to respond.

Speaking of the opinions scientists have about the underwater tunnel, the director of A Hole in the Water noted: “Scientists believe the underwater tunnel should be constructed, with the prerequisite that it will be part of the periferal artery, that is, it will close a circle around the city. I don’t agree with the reasoning that attracts the use of cars, I believe it would be more effective for us to use mass transit”.

Finally, speaking about the process of making his documentary, he said that it was relatively easy to find material about the city’s traffic problem, since it only took three days of filming the specific subject. However, research and backing up of his evidence were processes that demanded a lot of time and work.