The View from the Creators: Our Interview with “Yeşilçam” Screenwriters

Levent Cantek and Volkan Sümbül are the clever and erudite screenwriters of “Yeşilçam,” whose first season was recently released with great fanfare on BluTV – the largest digital TV platform in Turkey. The series marks their third collaboration. “Yeşilçam” stars Çağatay Ulusoy as Semih Ateş – a struggling cinematic producer, who seeks love and redemption…

“Yeşilçam”: Dealing with a Difficult Past (Review of Episodes 3 & 4)

The second installment of “Yeşilçam” was even better than the first. New and interesting characters appeared, existing ones became more delineated, and the narrative took an unexpectedly complex and remarkably substantive turn. Marketed as a dramedy set against the glamorous background of the golden age of Turkish Cinema, “Yeşilçam” is turning out to be a…

“Yeşilçam”: An Elegant Blast From The Past (Review of Episodes 1&2)

If for any reason you are still on the fence about “Yeşilçam,” it is definitely time to get off it. This series has it all. Comedy, drama, action, suspense, rivalry, love, family, and history all wrapped up into a glamorous package. A very smart script comes to life thanks to outstanding interpretations by many talented…

Our Exclusive Interview with “Paper Lives” Director, Can Ulkay — Part Two

This article contains the second and final portion of our interview with Director Can Ulkay, in which he elaborates on the psychological, social, and artistic aspects of “Paper Lives” and on his plans for the future. (For Part One of the interview, please click here.) We faithfully reproduced Mr. Ulkay’s answers in our English translation…

Our Exclusive Interview with “Paper Lives” Director, Can Ulkay — Part One

Can Ulkay is the Director of “Kağıttan Hayatlar” (Paper Lives) — the Turkish movie starring Çağatay Ulusoy, which was released last March on Netflix to worldwide acclaim. (Read our review here.) When he generously agreed to an interview, we sent him 20 questions to choose from. In the end, he thoroughly and thoughtfully answered each…

“Kuş” (“Birdie”): A Rare Glimpse into Çağatay’s Soul

“Kuş” (Birdie) is a 20-minutes short film that marks Çağatay Ulusoy’s debut as a screenwriter, producer, and director. It also offers an unprecedented peek into this famous (and famously private) Turkish actor’s soul.   “Kuş” narrates the story of an old and ailing fisherman, who survives on an income that is just enough to cover his…

“Kağıttan Hayatlar”: Nothing Is What It Seems

WARNING! This review includes SPOILERS about the movie “Kağıttan Hayatlar.” (“Paper Lives”) If you have yet to watch it, please check out the film’s spoiler-free information page on this website instead. Make sure, however, to come back to this review after you see the movie! “Kağıttan Hayatlar” entices viewers with an endearing and ostensibly linear…

“Paper Lives”: The Man Behind the Camera

On 12 March, the whole world will finally get to watch Director Can Ulkay’s much-anticipated movie “Kağıttan Hayatlar” (Paper Lives) on Netflix. Since little is known about him outside of Turkey, we decided to take a closer look in anticipation of the film’s release. Believe it or not, Can Ulkay produced his first full-length feature…

The Children of Çağatay

Due for global release on Netflix on 12 March 2021, “Kağıttan Hayatlar” tells the story of Mehmet, a solid waste warehouse manager. He has lived most of his life on the streets of Istanbul. Now as an adult, he helps unfortunate children who, just like him, were left alone to fend for themselves. One day,…

Yeşilçam​ Revelations

Did you catch all the hints contained in the “Yeşilçam”​ teaser? No worries! We put together this video/blog with a lot of careful research, to point out the many historical and artistic references in the recently released “Yeşilçam” teaser. So that viewers, especially those who are unfamiliar with the history of Turkish cinema, might fully…