« Famous Bulgarian film studio to become set for Turk drama » – Hürriyet Daily News

Nu Boyana, the largest film production studio in Bulgaria, will host Turkish filmmakers Muharrem Gülmez and Serdar Akar for a 78-episode TV series. More than half the cast will be made up of Bulgarian actors. Source : Hürriyet

« Turkish filmmakers Muharrem Gülmez and Serdar Akar are planning to make a 78-episode TV series in Bulgaria. Shooting for the series, which will take places in the Nu Boyana Film Studios, will begin in August

Turkey’s hugely successful TV industry is preparing to bring one of its shows to Bulgaria, with plans to shoot dozens of episodes of the new program “Biniciler” (Riders) in the Balkan country.

“Our country is insufficient for us. We are producing so many things that we have trouble finding sufficient equipment and staff. This is why we have decided to come to our neighbor. When you need something, you go to your neighbor. This situation is like that. I hope we will do a good job here,” Turkish producer Muharrem Gülmez said during a weekend press conference outlining the filmmakers’ plans.

Some 78 episodes of “Biniciler” will be shot at Bulgaria’s Nu Boyana Film Studios starting in August.

Gülmez told Anatolia news agency that filmmakers had laid the foundations for a bridge between the countries in the best possible way and added that the chance to shoot in Bulgaria had attracted them because of the country’s natural beauty and its studio opportunities.

“More than 50 percent of the staff will include Bulgarian artists,” Gülmez said, adding that 15 artists from Turkey would act in the show for which casting work is still being conducted.

Asked by Bulgarian reporters how closely Turkish series adhere to reality, Gülmez said: “TV series are dramatic documentaries. These TV series are not dramas that relate to Turkey but the dramas of people and families. Turkish TV series do not give messages like ‘our beaches are very beautiful, our policy is very strong.’ We generally work on love stories.”

Director and screenwriter Serdar Akar said shooting would last two years.

“The TV series, which includes fantastic elements, is set in the pre-historic period, but at its core there is the theme of humanity,” he said.

Akar said they had found a good basis in Bulgaria for shooting. “The director of Nu Boyana Film Studios David Varod made many things happen for us. He opened the door to the studios for us. I think that we can do good work there. Now we have started looking for a house to stay in. We will be working here for two years but we don’t feel out of place.”

Bulgarian Culture Minister Vezhdi Rashidov, who brought the Turkish filmmakers together with their Bulgarian counterparts, said he was very pleased to establish the bridge of friendship. “Bulgaria-Turkey relations have never been as good as they are now,” Rashidov said.

ashidov said Turkish cinema was the world’s third biggest cinema after Hollywood and Bollywood. “One of our biggest dreams is to organize a festival that will introduce young Turkish cinema to Sofia soon.”

The minister also said he would sign an agreement with Turkish Culture and Tourism Minister Ertuğrul Günay in the coming days for Turkish-Bulgarian joint productions. “In this way, we will be able to provide financing from both countries for joint productions.”

Nu Boyana

Nu Boyana is the largest film production studio in Bulgaria. Since being rebuilt in a picturesque location on the outskirts of Sofia the studio has hosted the production of 180 feature films, including high-budget movies like “The Black Dahlia” and “The Way Back,” as well as produced visual effects for “The Expendables,” “Conan” and more.

Source : Hürriyet Daily News

« Sultan tops the Internet in Bulgaria » – Hürriyet Daily News

« Popular Turkish TV series are now available on the Internet in the Bulgarian language, with “Muhteşem Yüzyıl” (Magnificent Century) taking the lead.

Among these TV series, “Muhteşem Yüzyıl” is the first one to garner high ratings on the Internet. The series, which is translated into Bulgarian by volunteer translators a few hours after the episodes premier in Turkey, has many Bulgarian followers. The followers discuss the series in forums and share private information about the artists acting in the series.

Interest in “Muhteşem Yüzyıl” on the Internet has caught the attention of Bulgarian TV channels. It is reported that many channels are competing against each other to buy the series. The winning channel will broadcast the series every weekday in order to catch the timing in Turkey.  » […]

« TV series « Magnificent Century » becomes a phenomenon in Bulgaria » – Cumhuriyet

« Several Turkish tv series which have been on air have also become a phenomenon on the internet in Bulgaria.

A number of Turkish tv series such as « Unforgettable (Unutulmaz) », « Autumn (Son Bahar) », « Little Women (Kucuk Kadinlar) », « Under the Linden Trees (Ihlamurlar Altinda) », « An Istanbul Tale (Bir Istanbul Masali) » and « Little Secrets (Kucuk Sirlar) and notably « The 1001 Nights (Binbir Gece) » and « The Fall of Leaves (Yaprak Dokumu) » have made their private channels rating champions.

« The Magnificent Century (Muhtesem Yuzyil) » has also been the most viewed tv series on the internet in Bulgaria.

Turkish tv series Magnificent Century is being watched on Bulgarian internet pages with the subtitles translated by volunteer fans a few hours later it was broadcast in Turkey. Later, tv series’ Bulgarian fans share their opinions over events and the private life of the leading cast.

The Magnificent Suleyman, Hurrem Sultan, Ibrahim Pasha, Malkacoglu and Mother of Reigning Sultan are the main topics of the forums. Bulgarian tv channels have already taken action to buy this tv series’ copyrights.

Yet, the Magnificent Century is not the only Turkish tv series that attracts the highest audience viewership in Bulgaria. « I Named You Feriha (Adini Feriha Koydum) », « Modesty (Iffet) », « What Is the Fault of Fatmagul? (Fatmagul’un Sucu Ne?) », « North-South (Kuzey-Guney) » and some other popular series are also still being watched excitedly by Bulgarian fans. »

Source : Cumhuriyet

« Erdogan pushes for common future with Balkan states  » – SETimes.com

By Chase Winter for Southeast European Times in New York — 28/09/11

Wrapping up his visit to New York, Erdogan sends a message of universal values and pushes for a common future with Balkan states.

Speaking alongside leaders of the Balkan states at the New York Balkan Forum last week (September 22nd), Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan stressed the cultural and historical ties between Turkey and the Balkans, while calling on the region to overcome its troubled history to co-operate and integrate to form a common future.

« In the future, the Balkans’ most pressing need is to learn a lesson from its experience and start working towards prosperity, development, and peace, » he said, adding that any problems experienced in the Balkans directly reflect on Turkey because of historical ties of brotherhood.

However, the absence of Serbia and Greece at the forum due to the presence of Kosovo and Macedonia, respectively, was a clear reminder of a Balkans still divided.

Intra-Balkan economic integration and investment were key themes, while Turkey’s fast-growing economy and investments in the region provided the backdrop to the growing importance of Turkey.

Describing the Balkans as « Turkey’s door to the West », Confederation of Businessmen and Industrialists (TUSKON) President Rizanur Meral said Turkey has undergone an economic transformation since 2002, with the world’s second fastest growing economy and a jump in exports from $35 billion to $135 billion.

Balkan countries will need to expand markets due to the small size of domestic markets, Deputy Governor of Turkey’s Central Bank Ihbrahim Turhan said, adding that countries like Turkey and Russia afford opportunities.

According to Timothy Ash, the head of emerging markets research at RBS global banking, as Europe faces financial trouble Turkey can play a role as a driver for Balkan growth. However, he warned, Balkan states will have to do more to attract FDI as European financial resources run dry.

As the largest investor in Kosovo, Turkey plays a unique role in the country due to a « common past, religion, geographic position and the big support we’ve got from the Turkish government » Kosovo Foreign Minister Enver Hoxhai explained.

Pointing to the free trade agreement between Albania and Turkey, Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha said that Turkish investment in Albania increased four fold between 2005 and 2010.

Meanwhile, Bulgarian Foreign Minister Nickolay Mladenov said that energy co-operation with Turkey, especially finalising Nabucco, are his country’s top priority.

« Connecting energy markets, making sure we have a southeast European energy market with a common strategy to make sure energy networks are connected, » is one area Mladenov said the Balkan states could make tangible efforts at co-operation and integration.

On the political front, Mladenov said working together to overcome the difficulties of the past is necessary for regional co-operation. « One of the very important examples over the past few years has been the role Turkey has played in pushing and helping countries strengthen their co-operation together, particularly Bosnia and Serbia, » he said.

All the states including Turkey said their future is within the EU and NATO, which will act as an anchor for regional co-operation and security.

However, Erdogan highlighted that for a common future there needs to be more than economic growth and material gain: human rights, democracy, and the rule of law are also of equal importance.

Speaking on Saturday (September 24th) at an event organised by the Turkish Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research (SETA), Erdogan said the age of autocratic regimes is over and that Turkey would act according to universal principles and the will of the people.

By framing the Balkans as being the heart of Turkey and stressing universal rights, Erdogan tried to place ideology and principles to the forefront of his message.

« Sarajevo’s fate is Edirne’s fate, Skopje’s fate is Kosovo’s fate, Palestine’s fate is Istanbul’s fate, in that case the fate of humanity should become the fate of Ankara, » he said. »

Source : SES Türkiye

 

« Turkey’s soap opera diplomacy  » – Public Radio International

« Soap operas from Turkey are forging trust and curiosity among residents of Bulgaria, its long-time foe.

Mistrust between Bulgarians and Turks runs deep. The Ottoman Turkish Empire ruled over Bulgaria for some 500 years. Some still look back to 1876, when Ottoman forces committed atrocities against Bulgarians, before the country’s independence in 1908. Today, Matthew Brunwasser reports for PRI’s The World that many Bulgarians have begun to warm to Turkey’s influence because of a not-so-secret weapon: soap operas.

Turkish soap operas are hugely popular in Bulgaria today. One of the main Bulgarian channels shows Turkish soaps six and a half hours a day.

« We are bigots when it comes to Turkey, » Atanas Harizanov, a resident of Perushtitsa, Bulgaria, told PRI’s The World. Perushtitsa was nearly wiped out in the 1876 uprising, but even there, residents are warming to the Turkish soap operas. « They are changing the consciousness of the people of Perushtitsa, despite the deeply buried pain of the past, » Harizanov said. « I don’t believe that its hatred anymore. But little by little, the Turkish soap operas are building a bridge of trust and curiosity. »

Bulgaria used to consider its southern neighbor backward and strictly Islamic, Brunwasser reports. The shows are changing that by showing glamorous Istanbul locations and attractive characters living modern lifestyles. […] »

Source : Public Radio International

« Turkish TV series become subject of Bulgarian documentary » – Hürriyet Daily News

 » Bulgarian reporter Kristina Vladimirova has prepared a 15-minute documentary to determine why Turkish TV series have attracted such extraordinary interest in her country. She said the Bulgarian viewers with whom she spoke felt close to the family models in the Turkish series

Several Turkish television series, which began airing on Bulgarian television last summer, have become the subject of a documentary in the country.

More than 10 Turkish TV series, including “Gümüş” (Silver), “Binbir Gece” (1001 Nights), “Yabancı Damat” (The Foreign Groom), “Yaprak Dökümü” (The Fall of Leaves), “Asi” and “Annem” (My Mother) have drawn great interest from Bulgarians. The shows’ high viewer rates have become the subject of a documentary in the country.

In her 15-minute documentary, Kristina Vladimirova, a reporter from the private BTV channel that airs “Gümüş,” “Yabancı Damat” and “Yaprak Dökümü,” talked to scientists and audiences in an attempt to determine why the series have attracted such extraordinary interest.

“When compared to Latin American series, Turkish ones get 50 percent more ratings,” said BTV Program Coordinator Ventzislava Konova.

Given the present dominance of the TV medium, Plamen Bochkov, an anthropologist at New Bulgarian University, said, “If Shakespeare were alive today, he would write scripts for TV series.”

Social psychologist Plamen Dimitrov compared the female characters of Turkish series to heroes in tales such as “Snow White” and “Cinderella,” arguing that the contemporary media has filled the place previously filled by older children’s stories. “There is no emptiness in culture, old children stories have become the themes of TV series,” he said.

Vladimirova said women were always in the background in Latin American TV series because of the strong effect of the Catholic Church. Turkey, however, was a place where modern and traditional worlds met and families were central, she said. “There is a respect for old people in modern Turkish families.”

Vladimirova said the Bulgarian viewers with whom she spoke felt close to the family models in the Turkish series. “The respect for the elderly affected Bulgarians.”

Image of Turks changed

Turkologist Jana Jelyazkova said Bulgarians had different opinions about Turkish people before watching Turkish TV series but that “they have now seen the truth.”

The documentary argues that Turkish TV series have affected Bulgarians’ domestic relations and even name traditions. There are reports that newborn babies were given the names of characters from the series and that Bulgarians’ travel destinations had even changed as well.

“The number of Bulgarian tourists traveling to Turkey has increased by 40 percent. They want to visit the places where TV series are made,” Jelyazkova said.

Source : Hürriyet Daily News