Eleven awards to Steppe
The National Feature Film Competition saw a line-up of 10 films competing in 17 categories for total prize money of TL 720 thousand. With director, Zeki Demirkubuz, in the chair, the jury was made up of cinematographer, Emre Erkmen, author and screenwriter, Latife Tekin, actor and screenwriter, Mert Fırat, and actor and producer, Şebnem Bozoklu, who collectively named Ali Özel’s Steppe (Bozkır) Best Film.
Steppe also took home the Best Director, Behlül Dal Best First Film, Best Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Music, Best Film Editing and Film-Yön (Turkish Film Directors’ Guild) Best Director awards.
Presenting Ali Özel with the Best DirectorAward, Zeki Demirkubuz indicated that all jury votes were unanimous and explained the decision-making process as follows: ‘All the votes we took were unanimous. We discussed each award individually. We made no distinction between small and large-scale productions and showed no favoritism. We didn’t talk about money. We didn’t throw the money around. We had equal respect for all filmmakers. We watched 10 films. With some, we felt no connection at all. Some, we respected. Some we liked. But there was one film we applauded, one film that truly stood out. At a time when the state and government alike are trying to restrain and tone down cinema, when certain groups claiming to be oppositional voices are trying to make cinema the object of cheap criticism and everyday politics, in short when cinema is prey to multiple competing agendas, we watched a film that reminds us of the nature of life, the past, what we have left behind, death and cemeteries, a film that restores us at least in part, that gives a sense of the zeitgeist, that goes in search of the truth. Our eyes welled up, we had lumps in our throats and we felt a thrill of excitement. It was the kind of film that, to paraphrase Anton Chekhov, would have led us to understand the meaning of life had it carried on a little longer. I am proud to give the Best Director Award to the director of that film.’
Best Actress to Selen Uçer
Selen Uçer picked up Best Female Actor for her performance in Love, Spells and All That (Aşk, Büyü vs.), while Best Supporting Female Actor went to Aslı İnandık for her role in Breath (Soluk).
The Best Male Actor Award was given jointly to Alican Yücesoy and Mücahit Koçak for their respective performances in La Belle Indifference (Küçük Şeyler) and Steppe (Bozkır). And the award for Best Supporting Male Actor was shared by further cast members of Steppe, Ozan Dağara and Hakan Emre Ünal.
Film-Yön goes for Ali Özel
Decided by a jury made up of Biket İlhan, Murat Düzgünoğlu and Melih Saraçoğlu, the Turkish Film Directors’ Guild (Film-Yön) Award was given this year in memory of veteran Turkish director, Yavuz Özkan, who passed away in May. The award, for Best Director, went to Ali Özel for Steppe. Separately, the Turkish Film Critics’ Association (SİYAD), represented on its jury by Agah Özgüç, Banu Bozdemir and Bülent Vardar, named Ümit Ünal’s Love, Spells and All That (Aşk, Büyü, vs.) winner of the SİYAD Award.
Best Art Direction went to Meral Efe Yurtseven and Yunus Emre Yurtseven for their work on Chronology (Kronoloji), while Leyla Yılmaz’s Not Knowing (Bilmemek) was voted winner of the Audience Award by the Antalya public.
Selda Taşkın first to win Cahide Sonku Award
One of this year’s new initiatives at the Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival, the TL 50 thousand Cahide Sonku Award, was also presented during the evening. The award was inaugurated in commemoration of the trailblazing female filmmaker, Cahide Sonku, in order to draw attention to the representation and visibility of women in the Turkish film industry. Presented by Executive Director of the Festival, Cansel Çevikol Tuncer, the award was won for the very first time by Selda Taşkın the film editor on La Belle Indifference (Küçük Şeyler) and Chronology (Kronoloji). The jury’s explanation for its decision read as follows: “Some people go about their work with a strong sense of duty, dedication and responsibility, but also add a large dose of goodwill and humanity into the mix. Although this may seem academic, unquantifiable, and perhaps even obvious, it is something that makes our lives all the richer. It is the secret architect of beautiful things. Despite her young age, Selda Taşkın has for many years stood by the work and the people that matter to her. She has written screenplays and given her support, typically expecting nothing in return. She has edited films and put together film credits. She has invested mind and soul and made this work shine all the brighter. On this basis, the jury has decided to award her the Cahide Sonku Award.”
Women’s Country named Best Documentary
The 10 films selected for the National Documentary Film Competition were considered by a jury composed of academic and film critic, Melis Behlil, director and producer, Nurdan Arca, and the artistic director of Dokufest, Veton Nurkolları, who awarded Best Documentary Filmto Şirin Bahar Demirel’s Women’s Country (Kadınlar Ülkesi) for “making use of creative film language to portray universal themes such as home, yearning and belonging through a set of heartfelt personal stories.” The Special Jury Prize went to Rûken Tekeş’s Aether on the grounds of the film’s “poetic film language, powerful photography and nuanced sound design.”
Best Short Film to My Sister
A total 15 films were selected for the National Short Film Competition and judged by the actress, Tuğçe Altuğ, Berlinale coordinator, Wilhelm Faber, and director, Rezan Yeşilbaş. While the jury named Burcu Aykar’s My Sister (Ablam) Best Short Film, Ozan Yoleri’s Aylin took home the Special Jury Prize.
Japan wins Best Film in International Competition
This year’s International Feature Film Competition saw a line-up of 10 films from 17 countries. Polish producer, Ewa Puszczynska, Busan Film Festival director, Jay Jeon, ARTE director, Remi Burah, and Icelandic independent filmmaker, Rúnar Rúnarsson, made up the jury, which was chaired by Dutch actress, Johann Ter Steege. The jury’s votes went to Joe Odagiri’s They Say Nothing Stays the Same for Best Film and to Iranian director Reza Mirkarimi (Castle of Dreams) for Best Director. Hamed Behdad of Iran, the lead in Castle of Dreams, won Best Male Actor, while Brazilian star, Regina Casé, was named Best Female Actor for her performance in Three Summers.
Colorful array of guests at closing night
The closing night, which saw awards to the tune of TL 1.4375 million presented, was attended by the Mayor of Metropolitan Antalya, Muhittin Böcek, and Festival Executive Director, Cansel Çevikol Tuncer. They were joined by a host of names from the world of film and television, among them Ahmet Mekin, Selma Güneri, Salih Güney, Yusuf Sezgin, Zeki Demirkubuz, Mert Fırat, İdil Fırat, Uğur Yücel, Ercan Kesal, Şevval Sam, Hazar Ergüçlü, Tayfun Pirselimoğlu, Erkan Can, Tuba Ünsal, Hande Doğandemir, Hatice Aslan and İrem Sak. The evening was rounded off with a concert of Cahit Berkay’s film music.
Festival hosts close to 1000 guests
Running from October 26 to November 1, the 56th Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival was hosted by the Antalya Metropolitan Municipality and organized by ANSET. In the course of the Festival week, 66 films by 69 directors from 29 countries were screened and close to 1000 guests welcomed to Antalya.
NATIONAL FEATURE FILM COMPETITION
Best Film (TL 250,000): Steppe (Bozkır), dir. Ali Özel
Dr. Avni Tolunay Special Jury Prize (TL 100,000): Love, Spells and All That (Aşk, Büyü vs.), dir. Ümit Ünal; La Belle Indifference (Küçük Şeyler), dir. Kıvanç Sezer
Best Director (TL 50,000): Ali Özel (Steppe/Bozkır)
Best Female Actor (TL 20,000): Selen Uçer (Love, Spells and All That/Aşk, Büyü vs.)
Best Male Actor (TL 20,000): Alican Yücesoy (La Belle Indifference/Küçük Şeyler), Mücahit Koçak (Steppe/Bozkır)
Best Supporting Female Actor (TL 10,000): Aslı İnandık (Breath/Soluk)
Best Supporting Male Actor (TL 10,000): Ozan Dağara, Hakan Emre Ünal (Steppe/Bozkır) Cahide Sonku Award (TL 50,000): Selda Taşkın (La Belle Indifference/Küçük Şeyler, Chronology/Kronoloji)
Behlül Dal Best First Film Award (TL 100,000): Ali Özel (Steppe/Bozkır)
Best Screenplay (TL 30,000): Ali Özel (Steppe/Bozkır)
Best Cinematography (TL 20,000): Ümit Çakmaksoy (Steppe/Bozkır)
Best Music (TL 20,000): Hüseyin Özel (Steppe/Bozkır)
Best Film Editing (TL 20,000): Ali Özel, Mahmut Aran, Yakup İnanlı (Steppe/Bozkır)
Best Art Direction (TL 20,000): Meral Efe Yurtseven, Yunus Emre Yurtseven (Chronology/Kronoloji)
Turkish Film Critics’ Association (SİYAD) Award: Love, Spells and All That (Aşk, Büyü vs.), dir. Ümit Ünal
Film-Yön Best Director Award: Steppe (Bozkır), dir. Ali Özel
Audience Award:Not Knowing (Bilmemek), dir. Leyla Yılmaz
NATIONAL DOCUMENTARY FILM COMPETITION
Best Film (TL 40,000): Women’s Country (Kadınlar Ülkesi), dir. Şirin Bahar Demirel
Special Jury Prize (TL 20,000): Aether, dir. Ruken Tekeş
NATIONAL SHORT FILM COMPETITION
Best Film (TL 20,000): My Sister (Ablam), dir. Burcu Aykar
Special Jury Prize (TL 10,000): Aylin, dir. Ozan Yoleri
INTERNATIONAL FEATURE FILM COMPETITION
Best Film (TL 65,000): They Say Nothing Stays the Same (Joe Odagiri)
Best Director (TL 32,500): Reza Mirkarimi (Castle of Dreams)
Best Male Actor: Hamed Behdad (Castle of Dreams)
Best Female Actor: Regina Casé (Three Summers)