Film director, producer and screenwriter Alexander Payne was honoured by the city of Aegio in the Peloponnese, on May 15. Payne is a third generation Greek-American, with roots from Syros Island and Aegio. The ceremony was followed by the screening of the film Nebraska (2013), which was nominated for six Academy Awards. About Schmidt (2002), Sideways (2004) and the Descendants (2011) are some of his most awarded films.

Alexander Payne attended Stanford University, where he majored in Spanish and History. He then went on to study film at UCLA Film School. His university thesis film was screened at the Sundance film festival, which led to him being backed by Miramax to write and direct Citizen Ruth (1996). Payne is a two time winner of the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay, and a three time nominee of the Academy Award for Best Director.