The Olympic Flame is again on its way from Ancient Olympia in Greece to the site of an Olympic Games.
SV High Priestess walking through temple of Hera
SV High Priestess lighting flame
CU Flame burning
SV High Priestess lighting vase with torch
SV People watch
SV Priestesses carrying flaming vase with torch (3 shots)
SV Priestesses around altar
SV Vase placed on altar
SV High Priestess calling to gods
SV Priestess handing torch to runner (also hands olive branch)
SV Runner away (2 shots)
Initials OS/1525 OS/1539
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Background: The Olympic Flame is again on its way from Ancient Olympia in Greece to the site of an Olympic Games.
The destination this year is Sapporo in Japan -- location of the 1972 Winter Olympics.
The torch was lit on Tuesday (28 Dec) in an elaborate ceremony in front of the sacred altar -- a short distance from the ancient stadium of Olympic, birthplace of the Olympic Games.
SYNOPSIS: An ancient ceremony re-enacted among the olive groves of Ancient Olympia in Greece. An actress from the National Theatre of Greece portrays the Vestal High Priestess for the ceremony that goes with the lighting of the Olympic Torch. It's lit by using the rays of the sun and a concave mirror.
It's a time-honoured ceremony that's been repeated over and over again. On Tuesday the torch was being lit for a journey that will end eight and a half thousand miles (13,680 kms) away in Sapporo -- site of the 1972 Winter Olympics. The climax of the ceremony comes when the High Priestess moves slowly to the sacred altar. This stands just a short distance from the ancient stadium of Olympia, birthplace of the Olympic Games. The stately procession are all dressed in ancient Greek costume.
At the altar -- the High Priestess summons the ancient Gods and asks for their blessing. (PAUSE 3 seconds) The ceremony was watched by Prince Takeda -- representing the organising committee of the Eleventh Winter Olympics in Sapporo.
The ceremonies complete, the flame -- and the traditional olive branch -- are handed to a runner who takes the torch on the first short section of its trip to Japan. On Wednesday it was carried aboard a plane at Athens for the flight to Tokyo.