Organized by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV), Turkey’s biggest international cinema event, the 36th Istanbul Film Festival will take place between April 5 and 15 with a roster comprising highlights from Turkey and world cinema.
The festival will present a rich program, running a gamut from the latest productions of world cinema to cult films, most recent Turkish films, classics, new discoveries, masterpieces and hidden treasures.
The festival will host 186 feature films, as well as 17 short films in 21 different categories and in addition to the screening of a total of 203 films by 207 directors from 61 countries, Q&A sessions, festival talks with guest filmmakers, concerts and other special events.
The festival program was launched on March 14 at a press conference with an announcement that the festival has a gift for students this year. With the support of the patrons, student tickets for the 11:00, 13:30 and 16:00 sessions on weekdays will be sold for 1 Turkish Lira.
The Cinema Honorary Awards of this year will be presented to scriptwriter Barış Pirhasan, actress Selma Güneri, actor Macit Koper and the cinematography master Çetin Tunca. The awards will be presented at the opening ceremony on April 4 at the TİM Maslak Show Center.
One of the most beloved actors of film, with memorable roles in “Richard III,” “Gods and Monsters,” “Lord of the Rings” and “X-Men” series, Sir Ian McKellen will be the guest of the festival to receive the Cinema Honorary Award of the Istanbul Film Festival.
McKellen will receive the award at the opening ceremony, and meet film lovers at the screenings of “Richard III” set to be screened at Beyoğlu Atlas and Rexx movie theaters. McKellen will also give a talk at the Albert Long Hall in Boğaziçi University on April 7.
In the International Competition section of the Istanbul Film Festival, 13 films from 11 countries, under the “New Perspectives in Cinema” theme will vie for the Golden Tulip.
The jury of the International Golden Tulip Competition, chaired by Reha Erdem, includes director Syllas Tzoumerkas, scriptwriter and producer Katayoon Shahabi, film critic Boyd Van Hoeij and director Gabe Klinger.
“This is Our Land,” “My Happy Family ,“ “In Between,” “The Girl Without Hands,” “Weirdos,” “Lady Macbeth,” “Zer,” “The Ornithologist,” “Manifesto,” “Summer 1993,” “Home,” “Casting” and “Animals” are among the Golden Tulip competition films.
Twelve films will also be vying for the Golden Tulip at the national competition of the festival, 10 of them being world premieres and one of them being a Turkey premiere.
The National Golden Tulip Competition Jury, chaired by The Taylan Brothers, will give awards in nine categories: Golden Tulip Best Film, Golden Tulip Best Director, Special Jury Award, Best Actress, Best Actor, Best Screenplay, Best Director of Photography, Best Editing, and Best Music.
Orhan Eskiköy’s “Taş” (The Stone), Pelin Esmer’s “İşe Yarar Bir Şey” (Something Useful), Buğra Gülsoy-Serhat Teoman’s “Mahalle” (Inside), Selman Kılıçaslan’s “Bütün Saadetler Mümkündü” (All Felicities Are Possible), Kazım Öz’s “Zer,” Ceylan Özgün Özçelik’s “Kaygı” (Inflame), Bülent Öztürk’s “Mavi Sessizlik” (Blue Silence), Fikret Reyhan’s “Sarı Sıcak” (Yellow Heat), Özgür Sevimli’s “Murtaza,” Erkan Tunç’s “Martı” (The Seagull), Yeşim Ustaoğlu’s “Tereddüt” (Clair Obscur) and Onur Ünlü’s “Kırık Kalpler Bankası” (The Bank of Broken Hearts) are among the films to compete.
Human Rights in Cinema, National Documentary Film, National Short Film and the Seyfi Teoman Best Debut Film are also other categories in the festival.
A new section at the festival, the Cinemania section line-up includes films like Abbas Kiarostami’s short film “Take Me Home,” which he made before he passed away last year, Şerif Gören’s “Yol” (The Road), Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Godfather,” Dario Argento’s “Suspiria” and Erdoğan Tokatlı’s “Son Kuşlar” (The Last Birds).
Returning to the program after a hiatus, “Where Are You My Love?” will also bring together films that convey that love has no age or gender and there are a thousand ways to find and look for love. “Chavela,” “Handsome Devil,” “The Misandrists,” and “Taekwondo” are among films in this section.
The festival’s popular Galas section will include the Turkey premieres of 11 most anticipated films by celebrated directors and actors.
This year, the Galas section will feature a wide array of award-winning and striking productions, including French
director Olivier Assayas’ “Personal Shopper,” Lisa Azuelos’ “Dalida,” and Guillaume Canet’s “Rock’n Roll.”