The old cinema building in Safranbolu, which is on the UNESCO World Heritage List and is listed as one of the world’s 20 best preserved cities, will be turned into a cinema museum and library.
Located in the northern province of Karabük, Safranbolu is a popular tourist destination known for its historic wood-framed houses.
The Cinema Museum and the Documentary Film Library, which will be established in the historic Teachers Union building, will provide education courses up to four days by famous directors to cinema department students and film aficionados.
Cinema lovers will also be able to watch films in the center, sitting on wood chairs and drinking nostalgic soda just like in the old times.
Speaking to state-run Anadolu Agency, Safranbolu Mayor Necdet Aksoy said the museum and library will be opened in association with the 18th International Golden Saffron Documentary Film Festival.
Aksoy said the festival, organized with the main theme of “Cultural Heritage and Preservation,” will have the subtitle: “Cinema for soda water.”
“The building of the Teachers Union served as the Çınar Movie House in subsequent years. We recovered this building in 2015. Now just like in the past the building will serve Turkish cinema again. Tools used in film production, cinema movies and traditional cinema motifs will be displayed here. We want to create Turkey’s biggest Documentary Film Library and Cinema Museum here in Safranbolu,” he added.
Aksoy said movies will be screened on some weekdays, adding that they would try to revive the cinema culture in the district.
“Open air cinemas opened in Safranbolu in the 1950s and closed cinemas opened in the 1960s. Safranbolu reminds us of cinema and soda water. It is a big joy sitting in wood chairs and drinking soda water while watching old Turkish films. We want to revive it,” he added.
He said an academy will also be opened in the Cinema Museum.
“Cinema students will attend courses here and come together with film directors ... Old cameras and other tools will be displayed here too, as well as modern cinema tools. Students will be able to use them during the education,” Aksoy said.
The mayor also noted that they received support from Turkey’s national broadcaster TRT, which will send a number of films and machines for the museum.
“These machines will be ready here in the festival. All products sent to the International Golden Saffron Documentary Film Festival, as well as many documentary films produced in Turkey and abroad, will be digitally archived in this museum. People will have the chance to watch them,” he said, adding that they will also organize events from time to time.
“We will organize country cinema days here, showing films from Azerbaijan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Spain, Italy, Iran
and India. The personal belongings of famous documentary filmmaker Suha Arın will be displayed here too,” Aksoy said.