Hali Anastopoulo. Photo: Courtesy of Hali Anastopoulo
NEW YORK – Eraklis Diamataris, co-editor/co-publisher of The National Herald spoke with Hali Anastopoulo, creator of the 10-part reality series Men of West Hollywood, now streaming for free on Crackle Plus.
Greek-American Anastopoulo, 21, leads a dynamic, ambitious, and diverse team of Gen Z women who played key roles – directing, producing, shooting and editing – in making the series. Her production company, Get Me Out Productions, is based in West Hollywood.
Hali’s parents are prominent Greek-Americans in the legal field – her father and business partner Akim Anastopoulo (who is known for National Lampoon’s courtroom series An Eye for an Eye which ran for five seasons 2004-2009) has a prominent law firm in South Carolina, and her mother Constance Anastopoulo, a law professor at the Charleston School of Law, ran for Attorney General of South Carolina in 2018.
Their daughter has always wanted to produce entertainment, and her debut series premiered on streaming in the U.S. and Canada this month.
The reality series Men of West Hollywood follows the lives of three gay men and three straight men in West Hollywood. Screen Media, a Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment company, acquired ad-supported rights to the series for streaming on Crackle Plus in fall 2021. The show premiered on January 20 with a terrific launch event at the Sofitel in Beverly Hills.
When Diamataris asked about her Greek heritage and its influence in her life, Anastopoulo said: “My Greek heritage has shaped, obviously, a lot of who I am and my career. I come from a long line of Spartan women. My mom would say to me when I was little, ‘you can do anything, you come from all of these Spartan women,’ that was something they really ingrained in me and being Greek-American is something I’m super proud of and it really shaped my desire and hunger to really get involved in this industry and do a lot.”
When asked if she gets to visit Greece often, Anastopoulo told Diamataris that “yes, I try to go as often as I can. My family actually has a house there so we can go roughly once every summer.”
About her decision to pursue a career in the highly competitive entertainment industry, Anastopoulo said: “I grew up in South Carolina and then when I moved to Los Angeles when I was in high school, Los Angeles is so immersed in the entertainment industry, I was really exposed to it in ways I had not been in South Carolina. I was definitely intrigued by it and the more I looked into it and then with my first show, Men of West Hollywood is based within the community of Los Angeles, so that was a really big drive for me to want to start a production company and create this show, that whole time in my life was really pivotal in my decision to be in the entertainment industry.”
Of her family’s support and the support of the community in South Carolina, Anastopoulo said: “My family is really, really supportive which I am so grateful for and to have a really large Greek family, obviously, they’re the best and so supportive, I’m really grateful for that, and being from South Carolina is a really big deal to me as well and having that community on top of it is really special, they’ve been super supportive, so having that overlap of the Greek community and the South Carolina community, it’s a nice group of supportive people.”
BALTIMORE, MD – Artist Eirini Linardaki shared the new Public Art Project she is working on with arts educator Sia Kyriakakos and her students at Mergenthaler Vocational Technical High School (MERVO) in Baltimore.
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