Elia Kazan's own words begin the saga of young Stavros (Stathis Giallelis), who leaves his war-torn homeland behind to begin a new life. With his family's meager fortune and his father's blessing, Stavros encounters both allies and adversaries on a dramatic trek. He ultimately achieves his dream through sheer determination and will, thereby earning his nickname: America America. Saluting the masses who sailed toward Miss Liberty's shining torch, Kazan (A Streetcar Named Desire) uses little-known talents here rather than stars. The results impress: Academy Award nominations (1963) for Best Picture, Director and Screenplay, an Oscar for Gene Callahan's vivid Art Direction, Golden Globes to Kazan (Best Director) and Giallelis (Most Promising Newcomer) and nomination to the National Film Registry for permanent preservation. Both epic and intimate, it's powerful moviemaking.
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Academy Award and Golden Globe-winning writer and director Elia Kazan ("On the Waterfront," "A Streetcar Named Desire") tells the true story of the early life of his uncle, Greek-immigrant Stavros Topouzoglow, whose optimistic dreams of a turn-of-the-century America quickly collide with cold, hard reality. Despite the casual cruelties, betrayals, and career setbacks he experiences in his new homeland, he forms strong and lasting friendships that help him weather the worst. Nominated for Academy Awards for Best Picture; Best Director; and Best Writing, Story and Screenplay, this feature won an Academy Award for the painstakingly accurate art direction of Gene Callahan.
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