Born in the depth of winter but associated by most people with the summer, “That Summer” (1971 Film). Elena Nathanael was born on 19th January, 1947 in nea Filadelfeia, Athens.
Still in her 16s she made her début on the big screen with the film of popular Greek director Yiannis Dalianidis “Kati na kaiei” (1963). In 1968 she got the “Best Actress Award” in the Thessaloniki International Film Festival for her role as Christina in the film “Randevou me mia Agmosti” . The roles she is most remembered for were about a free-spirited, independent young woman full of mystery and elegancy like Elena in the film “Epiheirisis Appolon”.
Her gentle appearance and forever sorrowful eyes showed a fragile introvert persona. In reality she was unconventional and practical. “I don’t care being the nice girl in my films. It’s tiring and I’m fed up with digging into others to “discover” them. I used to say: This person has some wonderful characteristics I need to bring to surface. It’s a pity they are mistaken and others don’t realize what they are like! And you know what? Most times this was not the case. They were no more than a hopeless tangle and why should I be the one to untangle that mess? It took me so much time and effort to untangle myself. Do I really need to do that for others as well? No, I don’t.”
Although she grew up in conventional times, she never got married. She had a daughter Inka Maria with the businessman Giorgos Tsagkaris. She spent life after her retirement in Euboea with her life partner Tassos Mitropoulos, veteran footballer of Olympiacos, on her farm close to nature! She loved farming, wine production and animals and developed a strong bond with her horse, Kallistratos. On the day of her death Kallistratos broke the door of his stable and sensing his beloved’s passing away he died a week after Elena.
She never wanted to die on stage like most actors said. “That “sacrifice” means nothing to me”, she said. She retired from bright lights to live the life she had dreamt of and whenever anyone expressed their wish for a comeback of her beautiful eyes on screen she answered: “There are much more beautiful eyes out there now…look at them and forget me not!”
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