Actors arrive in Greece for continued shooting of Man of God film about St. Nektarios

Athens, September 8, 2020

Director Yelena Popovic and actor Aris Servetalis, who plays St. Nektarios. Photo: Marilena Anastasiadou Director Yelena Popovic and actor Aris Servetalis, who plays St. Nektarios. Photo: Marilena Anastasiadou     

Actors are beginning to arrive in Greece for continued shooting of Yelena Popovic’s film, Man of God, about the great 20th-century hierarch and wonderworker St. Nektarios of Aegina.

Filming initially began on June 8.

Alexander Petrov arrived in Greece late in the evening on Saturday, September 5. The Russian actor will play a close assistant of St. Nektarios. The first scene, filmed yesterday, captured the moment when the Holy Synod of the Patriarchate of Alexandria expelled St. Nektarios, who is played by Greek actor Aris Servetalis, reports the Orthodoxia News Agency.

Hollywood star Mickey Rourke is expected to arrive today to play a paralyzed man who was healed by St. Nektarios at the hospital where he died.

Concerning the choice of Servetalis in the role of the great saint, Yelena Popovic explains: “When I saw him, the director inside me felt from his aura that he was the ideal one. This role has some requirements; the actor playing St. Nektarios must be able to touch you without even opening his mouth. This is exactly what Aris does.”

She says she was certain she made the right choice when the actor told her: “I would love to [play this role]. But are you sure I can do it?”

Popovic offered Mickey Rourke a role, having remembered his powerful performance in the 2001 film The Pledge. Rourke read the script and said he was very touched by the story and would love to participate.

The film focuses on the many persecutions the great saint suffered without ceasing his pastoral ministry, including slander and exile. Filming will take place at several sites connected with the life of St. Nektarios, including Holy Dormition Monastery in Penteli, Greece, and on the island of Aegina, at the hospital where he took his last breath.

Popovic has visited the monastery on Aegina many times. “In each of my visits I feel tremendous joy; I cannot explain it,” she said.

The film is sponsored by the Athonite Vatopedi Monastery and the Institute of St. Maximus the Greek and is currently scheduled to be released on December 3 this year.

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Dionysia7/22/2022 10:12 am
What a wonderful, compelling account of St. Nektarios's blessed life. The work of the film director, cast, and all who contributed to bringing this story to the screen for the world to see is priceless and prizeworthy.
Manuel 6/26/2022 7:09 am
I saw this lovely movie with my Orthodox friends and partner,I am Catholic. I totally loved the Story and the life of this great man priest Neckarios. All the way through it I kept on telling myself this man is a Saint and was so pleased he was finally recognised as one after his passing. What a roller coaster ride of emotions with many tearful moments. Best movie I've seen this year. God Bless.
Gisele Delfakis3/22/2022 9:09 am
I was moved greatly by this movie. Greatly made with excellent choice of actors and exquisitely directed. Great, great movie showing who. That man was who became a saint.
Ambra Declich10/23/2021 1:45 am
I have seen this movie yesterday and I was touched deeply in my heart by the testimony of the life of St.Nektarios who really lived according to the Gospel of our Lord, despite all the troubles he suffered. I believe all actors played very well and the film director did a super job
John9/15/2020 2:57 am
they have such an undertaking with this story and film, which included Mickey Rourke, and they're using a woman to direct the film who has only has experience as a producer. She has ZERO experience. They really need to choose somebody who knows what they are doing as a director.
Helen LoBosco9/11/2020 7:40 am
My husband and I visited Aegina. It is beautiful.
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