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Greeks threaten legal action over Alexander sexuality

Story by: Jack Foley

BEWARE the Greek bearing.... legal documents? According to recent reports, a group of Greek lawyers have threatened to sue the makers of Alexander for suggesting that Alexander the Great was bisexual.

Both distributor, Warner Bros, and director, Oliver Stone, have been singled out for possible action, as tempers flare concerning Hollywood's depiction of the all-conquering Macedonian hero.

An extra-judicial note has already apparently been sent to the studio and director demanding that the film include a mention in the credits stating that it is a fictional interpretation of the legend, and not based on official documents.

Yannis Varnakos told Reuters: "We are not saying that we are against gays, but we are saying that the production company should make it clear to the audience that this film is pure fiction and not a true depiction of the life of Alexander."

Varnakos, who represents 25 lawyers, claims that he has gathered enough information about the content of the film to suggest there are 'inappropriate references', and reiterated his intention to take the matter further should Warner Bros not oblige with their request.

He insists there is no historical document or archive on Alexander to question his sexuality, even though it has been widely documented that Colin Farrell, who plays Alexander in the epic, is seen to kiss a man on-screen.

The uproar surrounding Alexander the Great is nothing new, given that 200 years ago, hundreds of northern Greeks, from the province of Macedonia, stormed an archaeological symposium after one speaker presented a paper on the subject.

They would prefer to remember Alexander as one of the greatest military leaders of all time, who by the time of his death at the age of 32, had conquered about 90 per cent of the then-known world.

Added Varnakos: "We cannot come out and say that [former US] President John F. Kennedy was a shooting guard for the Los Angeles Lakers basketball team and so Warner cannot come out and say Alexander was gay."

The film, which has attracted some negative early reviews, is due to open in America on November 24, with a UK release on January 7, 2005.

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