The Boston Turkish Film Festival presents 25 high caliber films by leading and emerging Turkish filmmakers as its 16th edition is set to run from March 16th to April 2nd at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Music program of the Festival will continue with exceptional concerts until April 23rd .

The festival will kick off with “61 Days” (İftarlık Gazoz), a charming story from the Aegean by filmmaker Yüksel Aksu.

This Year’s Excellence Award Recipient is Actor and Director Uğur Yücel

The Boston Turkish Film Festival Excellence in Turkish Cinema Award is celebrating its 11th year. This year’s recipient, acclaimed actor and director Uğur Yücel, will be presented his award at a ceremony at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, in recognition of his contributions to Turkish Cinema, after the screening of “Mr. Muhsin” (Muhsin Bey), a Turkish cinema classic. Mr. Muhsin was voted one of the Ten Best Turkish Films of all time by Ankara Cinema Association. Uğur Yücel as an actor played a young man named Nazik who dreams of becoming a folk singer in the film and this was an important  milestone in his career. This will be the North America premier of digitally restored version of the film.  There will be also two feature films in the program directed by him, namely Toss Up (his directorial  debut)  and Dragon Trap ( his thriller/action film).

BTFF Presents Another Solid Program with 25 Films

Many filmmakers will travel to this year’s Boston Turkish Film Festival from Turkey with most of their films making their North American and US premieres. “Boston Turkish Film Festival is proud to present another solid program this year,” says Erkut Gömülü, founding director of the festival. “The festival is making significant contribution to introduce Turkish Cinema and new generation of filmmakers to the film enthusiasts in the U.S.”

The festival will offer a vast array of films in terms of their themes, 18 of them will be making their North American and US premieres, and two films making their  East Coast premieres.  Q&A sessions with directors will follow film screenings.  20 percent of the films in the program are by women filmmakers.

There will be 21 feature films in the festival program: “61 Days” (İftarlık Gazoz) by Yüksel Aksu, “There where Atilla passes…” (Là où Atilla passe...) by Onur Karaman, “Blue Bicycle” (Mavi Bisiklet) by Ümit Köreken, “The Half” (Yarım) by Çağıl Nurhak Aydoğdu,  “My Mother’s Wound” (Annemin Yarası) by Ozan Açıktan, “Bad Cat” (Kötü Kedi Şerafettin) by Mehmet Kurtuluş and Ayşe Ünal, “We Were Dining and I Decided” (Yemekteydik ve Karar Verdim) by Görkem Yeltan, “Private Cemetery” (Mezarcı) by Talip Karamahmutoğlu, “Wedding Dance” (Kasap Havası) by Çiğdem Sezgin, “Toss Up” (Yazı Tura) by Uğur Yücel, “Mr. Muhsin” (Muhsin Bey) by Yavuz Turgul, “Don't Tell Orhan Pamuk That His Novel Snow is in the Film I Made About Kars” (Orhan Pamuk'a Söylemeyin Kars'ta Çektiğim Filmde Kar Romanı da Var) by Rıza Sönmez,  “Second Chance” (İkinci Şans) by Özcan Deniz,  “The Search Engine” (Arama Motoru) by Atalay Taşdiken, “In Search of a Film” (Bir Filmi Aramak) by Atalay Taşdiken, “Dragon Trap” (Ejder Kapanı) by Uğur Yücel, “Young Wrestlers” (Genç Pehlivanlar) by Mete Gümürhan, “Rauf” by Barış Kaya and Soner Caner, “Locksmith’s Debt” (Küçük Esnaf) by Bedran Güzel, “My Father’s Wings” (Babamın Kanatları) by Kıvanç Sezer, and “Ember” (Kor) by Zeki Demirkuz.

Award-Winning Documentary & Short Films and their Directors are at the Festival

Award-winning films of the Boston Turkish Festival’s Documentary and Short Film Competition will be screened and the directors will be presented their awards at a ceremony following film screenings on March 25th. Winners of the Documentary Film Competition are “İstanbul Notes” (İstanbul Makamı) by Özlem Sarıyıldız and Yunus Emre Aydın, for Best Documentary Jury Award and “Baksı: From Utopia to Reality” (Baksı: Ütopyadan Gerçeğe) by Bahriye Kabadayı Dal for Best Documentary Audience Award. Winners of the Short Film Competition are “The Translator” (Çevirmen) by Emre Kayış for Best Short Film Jury Award, and “Then I Woke Up” (Sonra Uyandım) by Atilla Ünsal for Best Short Film Audience Award.

Festival Presents High Caliber Concerts with Acclaimed Musicians

A series of exceptional concerts will take place in the music program of the Festival. On April 6th, a violin and piano recital by distinguished violinist Jülide Yalçın, Concertmeister of the Ankara Presidential Symphony Orchestra, and pianist Elif Önal.  On April 13th acclaimed musicians, kanun virtuoso Tahir Aydoğdu and neyzen Burcu Karadağ, the first female neyzen who performs professionally, will give a special concert, preceded by two workshops. In the closing concert of the festival, Neotolia will perform from their latest album, “Neotolian Song”, in their album release concert, joined by internationally acknowledged musicians on April 22nd.

A Special Photography Exhibition by Erkut Onart will be On View at the Festival

Distinguished photographer Erkut Onart’s works will be on display in the exhibition, “Anatolia – A Crossroad of Civilizations and Cultures” at the Boston University Howard Thurman Center, from April 3rd thru April 23rd.

More information about the festival program may be found at http://www.bostonturkishfilmfestival.org/

About Boston Turkish Film & Music Festival

Boston Turkish Film Festival (BTFF) features critically acclaimed films focusing on Turkish Cinema and Turkish filmmakers. It provides a rare opportunity for contemporary Turkish cinema and filmmakers to showcase their work in the U.S. to reach wider audience. BTFF takes place annually at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston in March/April.

The festival was initiated and has been programmed by Erkut Gömülü, partnering with the Turkish American Cultural Society of New England and the Film Program of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston in 2001.  Since then, BTFF has established continuity as the filmmakers who have been recognized by the festival continue to make their marks on the international film scene such as Nuri Bilge Ceylan,  Reha Erdem, Zeki Demirkubuz and Yeşim Ustaoğlu.

BTFF, celebrating its 16th year in 2017, is the firstTurkish film festival in North America, and  has become one of the most notable and respected festivals on contemporary Turkish Cinema outside of Turkey. The Festival proudly continues the tradition of presenting high caliber films as it has been growing steadily since its inception in 2001, and offers the U.S. and North America premieres of many films in its program, while highlighting the works of emerging and established Turkish filmmakers.

For the last ten years, Boston Turkish Film Festival has been presenting the Excellence in Turkish Cinema Award to distinguished directors for their contribution to Turkish cinema. Boston Turkish Film Festival, over the years, has also presented special screenings of many films, and retrospectives of the works of eminent directors, including the first North America retrospectives of Nuri Bilge Ceylan (2004), Reha Erdem (2007), and Derviş Zaim (2012).  

The Festival also supports short films and documentaries through its annual film competition. Each year around 40 films are screened through the competition.

In 2006, a music program was also introduced in addition to the film program, since then many internationally acclaimed contemporary musicians and composers in a wide range,from jazz to classical music, classical Turkish music and folk music, took part in the festival programs such as Fahir Atakoğlu, Tahir Aydoğdu, Ismail Hakkı Demircioğlu,  Ara Dinkjian,  Ayşegül Durakoğlu, Cem Duruöz, Erkan Oğur, Gulsin Onay, Selim Sesler,  Hüsnü Şenlendirici, Ömer Faruk Tekbilek, Derya Türkan.