Turkish Cinema: The New Generation – Su Baloglu, Producer ‘The Island’

Turkish cinema has become a regular fixture on the international festival circuit these days, represented most recently by first time features, such as Ceylan Ozgun Ozcelik’s media censorship-themed “Inflame,” which bowed this year in Berlin, and Emre Yeksan’s dystopian drama “The Gulf” which launched from Venice.

Variety has profiled several other directors, writers and producers who signal that a new generation is emerging within Turkey’s vibrant, albeit turbulence-riddled, film scene.

Su Baloglu was born in Famagosta, Cyprus, in 1987. After studying film in Canada and Istanbul she co-founded her production company Su Film and this year co-directed and produced documentary “Her First” about the challenges faced by women filmmakers in Turkey. Baloglu is co-founder of the Istanbul chapter of New York-based women filmmakers collective Film Fatales.

“The Island,” which has been selected by the Antalya Film Forum’s documentary pitching section, is the Cyprus-set “story of four women who desperately want to literally break the boundaries” which have been dividing the island, she says, following a 1974 coup that split it along Turkish and Greek ethnic lines.

The chaos “that prevents us from reaching beyond border gates, checkpoints and meeting one another, is a dark comedy that is unique to Cyprus,” notes Baloglu who besides being the doc’s creative producer is also one of its characters. The doc’s director, Sevinc Baloglu, is her mother, a journalist, who has worked on both sides of the borders dividing the island.

 

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