Shadow on the mountain (In Development)

Fiction | Greece | In Development

MFI Script 2 Film workshop


After the man she blames for her son’s death is set free, a mother decides to seek justice under her own terms.


Writer / Director: Nicholas Dimitropoulos

Producer: Marina Danezi – Tasos Koronakis

Production Company: Laika Productions

Approximate Budget: 1.148.250 (Euros)


Vagelio, a woman in her forties is trying to get by following the death of her son by suicide. Very much a loner in a small village that sees her as crazy, she is distraught when the man (Kostas) she accuses of her causing son’s suicide returns. The village embraces Kostas, a music teacher, and Vagelio finds herself even more alone. She believes that Kostas sexually abused her son. Only one police officer is looking back at the case. But Vagelio can’t take it anymore and takes matters into her own hands. An avid hunter, she knows the mountain well, so after a night out where she drugs Kostas, she takes him to the mountain where her son died, so he can confess. He doesn’t. Following a shoot-out with the police, she ends up in hospital. Kostas visits the hospital and she apologises. As he’s leaving, he tells her that her son killed himself because he liked it when Kostas touched him. In a fit of rage, Vagelio drives a car into Kostas and watches him die as it’s enveloped in flames.

Director’s note

Shadow On The Mountain is a psychological thriller that follows Vagelio, who is lost following her son’s suicide. She believes that his music teacher Kostas, is to blame and that there was something going on, but is alone in this belief.

The film explores what it’s like to be a guilt-ridden mother who couldn’t protect her child, along with the pain of losing a child. It explores what it’s like to be a woman in a closed community. And how in our society, when someone is loved and respected like Kostas, people don’t want to see the bad and end up victim blaming.

Even though I have directed features, this is my first feature film script as a writer and is very personal to me, as I was the victim of child abuse. I chose to look at it from a mother’s perspective from personal experience. My mother was more willing to take action when she found out about my own abuse. My father couldn’t face the mountain of emotions that lay in front of him, so did nothing.

I want this film to have the elements of the need for revenge and justice that she feels, but also the claustrophobia of a small town where Vagelio feels alone. Only in nature can she breathe.

The cast is very important. The acting will be real and raw, capturing these villagers for all their attributes and faults. The acting will be natural and the pauses, the looks between characters and moments of “nothingness” will all express emotion. I don’t want anything melodramatic, as the story itself is dramatic enough.

The camera in this film is an observer. In the start we will keep a distance, but as the film progresses and the tension builds, I want to move closer and closer. The camera will be mainly hand-held but with gentle movement.

Lighting wise, I want natural light and to use practicals. I like the photography of Eggleston and Meyerowitz. This film is European. Nothing flashy, real locations and an authenticity.

Director’s biography

Nicholas Dimitropoulos – director

Nicholas is a director based in London and Athens. He was born in Athens in
1976 but has lived most of his life in London. Nicholas studied economics at
UCL, but after this minor detour, he pursued his dream of directing. Nicholas
has directed three feature films in Greece, one of which was the last film of
the great Max Von Sydow (Echoes of the Past). He is currently in the
development phase of his next feature film, “Shadow on the Mountain” (Laika
Productions), a personal story he has also written. And his latest short film,
“Clean Slate” (and his first in French) is currently in post-production. Nicholas
also directed the much-loved TV series “Magnificent Creatures”, “Salt of the
Earth”, an episode of “I Saw You” and countless commercials. His passion
however, remains in films.

2022: Director: “Clean Slate” Short film for Crazy Mutt Films, shot in Paris,
France (in post-production)
2019: Director: “Echoes of the Past” (with Max Von Sydow/Alice Krige/
Tomas Arana…) Feature film for Foss Productions – Won Youth Award at
Thessaloniki Film Festival 2021
2018: Director: “Been Here Before Short film for Crazy Mutt Films/Foss
2009: Director: “180 degrees” Feature film for Village Roadshow
2007: Director: “Alter Ego” – Feature film for Village Roadshow
20015 –2018: Director of “Salt of the Earth” TV series for ΕΡΤ and Foss
2010: LACTA Love In Action (16mm) – won awards at New York
International Advertising Awards & Cannes & Greece
2008: Director: One episode of “I Saw You” TV series for Argonauts
Productions and Alpha
2007 –2008: Director of “Magnificent Creatures” TV series for Studio ATA
and Alpha
2005: Producer/Director for documentary TV series (Amazing Adventures
USA) shot in USA (HD). Bought by Discovery, Fox and Sky.
2005: Producer/Director for documentary TV series (Amazing Adventures
UK) shot in USA (HD). Bought by Discovery, Fox and Sky.