SOCIAL WITNESSING COMES ALIVE IN CINEMA
It has been emphasized that humour goes to the deep roots of Turkish society and criticisms arise from humour and develop, and lead the society. Director Ezel Akal, Grup Yorum Band Singer İnan Altın, and Actor-Director Ahmet Mümtaz Taylan met with the students at “1st Izmir Hak ve Emek (The Right and Labour)” themed Cinema Days organized by Izmir University of Economics Media and Cinema Clubs.
Director Ezel Akay, who made a speech at the organization, stated that humour went to the deep roots of Turkish society and that the actors dissolved what’s social and reflected it back again. Akay stated that they’ve been experiencing self-censorship for the past 15 years, he said, “We censor ourselves with words such as shame, dangerous, aggressive. Fearlessness needs to spread to the entire society. We will be watching brave and fearless movies, if not political”.
Akay also mentioned that the healing process has started. He reported that he was working on a movie covering 1915 events, and in addition to that he was getting ready to open Agora Meyhanesi (Pub House). Akay stated the following:
“Today, people who were not involved in politics started to get interested in politics. Politics needs to get easier. We need to get rid of deep qualms of conscience. There is a social sub consciousness. We either rebel against this sub consciousness or we get overwhelmed with it. “7 Kocalı Hürmüz” (the film is about the adventures of flirtatious Hürmüz in late 1800's Istanbul) was a political film for me. Political film is an issue of intention”
İnan Altın from Grup Yorum stated that the actors started to get more organized, he said, “There are organizations in 5 different branches of art. Councils have been established for art branches such as sculpture, music, cinema, etc. Actors are being targeted in different ways. They want to take away the spirit of the country by attacking art. We have many ways to resist this”.
‘We made criticisms politely’
Actor-Director Ahmet Mümtaz Taylan, on the other hand, stated that Turkey became a country who constantly speaks but never listens to. He said, “There is one Anatolia. We are attacking each other. A society does not have to agree on everything to live in peace. We need to listen to people with whom we have disagreements more. Nobody has a right to chase anyone away from anywhere. Living with people who are not alike turns a place into a heaven. We have a rich culture, and I believe we should not sacrifice that to politics.”
‘We did not break it, we bent it…’
Taylan pointed out that they worked with a team spirit in ‘Leyla ile Mecnun’ TV series set for 3 years, and all the criticisms they made were in politeness. Taylan stated the following:
“Our team has an understanding that humour is to bend something not to break it. That way you become more lasting. TRT (Turkish Radio and Television) is an institution; there has been some misunderstanding with people. We are not considering shooting a ‘Leyla ile Mecnun’ film. We are more interested in the film that we had to put on shelves. They are the documentaries we would like to show to our children, grandchildren in the future. You earn money to invest on films. I will shoot more films when I have enough money. I have many projects waiting.”