EdiMotion 13. – 16.10.2023

Guest Country 2023 – Turkey

The Guest Country Event will take place on the 14th of October in Cologne, from 20:30 to 23:30. Before that, there is a reception with Turkish food and wine, starting at 19:30.

© Cinemien © Cinemien

Köln'e hoş geldiniz, Türkiyeli film editörleri!
Welcome in Cologne, film editors from Turkey!

The last decade has been turbulent for the cinema of our guest country – a reflection of Turkish society as a whole. On the one hand, Nuri Bilge Ceylan continues to produce his arthouse masterpieces, and important films by other directors are also being made.

On the other hand, filmmakers in Turkey are increasingly harassed by the state, censored, detained without trial, or sentenced to lengthy jail time for their political activism. Most recently on the 23rd of September, all jury members of the Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival resigned in protest against the sudden removal of a documentary film from competition.

Against this background, Edimotion is proud to present the feature film Burning Days (directed by Emin Alper, original title: Kurak Günler) as the centerpiece of our guest country evening. This drama about a young, idealistic public prosecutor who is pushed to his limits by cronyism and corruption in the (fictitious) Anatolian town of Yaniklar, contains multilayered sociopolitical allusions in both its realistic and surrealistic parts.

Which is probably one of the reasons why the Turkish government retroactively withdrew its film funding. In April 2022, shortly before Burning Days had its Cannes premiere, Çiğdem Mater, one of the film’s co-producers, was sentenced to 18 years in prison – ostensibly for her involvement in the Gezi Park protests of 2013.

Burning Days won the 2022 European Film Award for Best Editing – the first Turkish film to do so. We are very pleased to welcome the two editors Eytan Ipeker & Özcan Vardar to Cologne for the film talk after the screening.

Edimotion presents the guest country evening in cooperation with the Turkish film editors’ association „Kurgucular Dayanışması” (KUDA). Çiçek Kahraman will say some introductory words on behalf of the association.

Saturday, 14 October 2023 | Filmforum at the Museum Ludwig

19:30 Reception with Turkish food and wine,
supported by Gül Delikatessen

20:30 Introduction and Screening of Burning Days (Turkish with English subtitles)
followed by a film talk with editors Eytan Ipeker & Özcan Vardar
moderated by Dietmar Kraus

Tickets (TEMPO members and/or IFEF participants can pay the reduced fee of 7 €)

© Selin Estroti © Selin Estroti

Eytan Ipeker

Born in Istanbul, Eytan studied filmmaking at NYU. In 2016, together with his partner Yoel Meranda, he produced Albüm, which won the Visionary Award at Cannes’ Critics Week and Best Feature at Sarajevo Film Festival. The films he edited were screened at Cannes, Berlinale, Sarajevo, Visions du Réel, DOKLeipzig, DokuFest, documenta, Viennale, BFI London and programmed by Tate Modern, Istanbul Modern, Pera Museum. He received numerous awards for his editing work, including the European Film Award for Best Editing for his joint work with Özcan Vardar on Burning Days. He’s also a director and experimental filmmaker, whose latest documentary The Pageant premiered in Visions du Réel and was screened at Sarajevo, Jerusalem and Odessa Film Festivals.

Eytan is a member of BFS (Editors Association of Germany) and KUDA (Editors' Society of Turkey). He lives in Berlin.

© Ezgi Mamus © Ezgi Mamus

Özcan Vardar

Born in Istanbul, Özcan Vardar studied Mathematics and Film in Bogazici University, Istanbul. He has been editing fiction films and documentaries since 2007. He was selected to Berlinale Talent Campus and Locarno Summer Academy in 2011. The films he edited were screened in A-list international film festivals. He has taught Film Grammar and Film Editing courses in various universities and instructed in many workshops. Since 2019, he is based in Hamburg. He is a founding member of Film Editors’ Society of Turkey (KUDA) and a board member of Mithat Alam Education Foundation, which was established to provide scholarships to film students.

© Cinemien © Cinemien

Burning Days

There is a gaping sinkhole in Yaniklar. In this small (fictional) town, somewhere in the parched plains of Anatolia, the groundwater has receded to such an extent that craters are opening up which threaten to swallow entire houses. This is where Emre, a recently graduated prosecutor, is sent to investigate the causes of the water crisis, and to keep a close eye on local officials.

Emre quickly encounters strange customs and murky entanglements. His attempts to enforce authority and the rule of law soon make him the target of rumors and intrigue. Who can he trust – the overwhelmed local policeman? The inscrutable judge? The journalist Murat, whose anti-corruption campaign also bears the hallmarks of a vendetta against the powerful mayor? When Emre is confronted with his first serious criminal case, what remains of his standing and composure, threatens to slip away.

TUR 2022 – 131 min., Turkish with English subtitles
Original title: Kurak Günler
Editor: Özcan Vardar, Eytan Ipeker. Director & Writer: Emin Alper. Director of Photography: Christos Karamanis. Composer: Stefan Will. Sound: Krešimir Rodic, Nardi van Dijk. Production: Ay Yapim, Liman Film. Cast: Selahattin Paşali, Ekin Koç, Erol Babaoğlu, Seli̇n Yeni̇nci̇, Erdem Şenocak, Sinan Demirer. Distributer: Cinemien Germany, Frankfurt am Main.

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