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Culture

Prometheus Project Foundation and HAP Collaborate to Create Diner Documentary

NEW YORK – The Prometheus Project Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to the creation of insightful Media Programs aimed at educating, enlightening, and empowering the American public, announced its collaboration with the Hellenic American Project (HAP) at Queens College, in producing media projects that make a difference.

The first collaborative project is a documentary feature film, ‘Diner, an American Institution’ which explores the profound influence of various ethnic groups on both American society and the food industry. At its heart, this joint endeavor seeks to conduct a historical and sociological examination of immigrant adaptability, integration, and interplay with cultural values, family bonds, and ethnic networks. ‘Diner, an American Institution’ explores the rich history of American diners and the invaluable contributions made by immigrants from across the globe who served as chefs, waitstaff, bussers, and kitchen crew in shaping this culinary institution’s success.

The documentary will trace the evolution of diners from their humble beginnings as horse-drawn food carts catering to late-night factory workers through their transformation into stationary structures resembling rail cars equipped with electricity and open around the clock. It will also explore the era of streamlined Art Deco silver diners in the 1930s and their evolution into the contemporary large-scale restaurants we know today.

Notably, the Greek-American community has played a pivotal role in the diner’s history. This documentary will tell the story of how Greek-Americans have been instrumental in shaping diners into the iconic American eateries they are today. Historical records indicate that in the 1990s, approximately two-thirds of New York City’s 800 diners were owned by Greek-Americans. Moreover, in New Jersey, widely regarded as the diner capital, the majority of diner owners are still of Greek descent.

“We are excited to tell this important story,” said Professor Nicholas Alexiou, Director of HAP at Queens College. “This documentary will shed light on the contributions of Greek-Americans to American culture and society.”

The documentary is expected to be completed by early 2024.

About the Prometheus Project Foundation: The Prometheus Project Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to producing enlightening Media Programs that inform, educate, and empower the American public. Through thought-provoking content creation, the Foundation aims to foster a deeper understanding of the diverse tapestry of American society and history.

About the Hellenic American Project (HAP) at Queens College: HAP at Queens College is a dynamic academic initiative committed to exploring and promoting Hellenic culture and Greek and Cypriot-Americans’ contributions to American society. HAP enriches the academic and cultural landscape of Queens College and the broader community through research, education, and cultural events.

More information about Prometheus Project Foundation is available online: https://www.prometheusprojectfoundation.org/.

For more information about Hellenic American Project (HAP) at Queens College, visit www.hapsoc.org.

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