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MOVIES

<i> Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press</i>

The film “The Last Temptation of Christ"--based on a 1954 novel by Greek author Nikos Kazantzakis--is being banned from the Greek capital of Athens, where Kazantzakis lived for more than 20 years. The ban, handed down by a Greek court Tuesday, came after eight Orthodox Christian organizations claimed the movie insulted religious feeling and defamed the head of the church. The court’s injunction orders theaters and the film’s distributor, United International Pictures, to suspend screenings (which began Oct. 23) or face a fine of nearly $700 for each violation, the spokesman said. Both the Athenian ban and one in the northern Greek city of Salonika are being challenged in higher courts. The original novel was also banned in Greece in the ‘50s.


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