Newborns in Middle East named after Turkish TV stars
ISTANBULThe names of actors and actresses starring in Turkish TV shows are being given to newborns across the Middle East and Eastern Europe, where Turkish series continue to be hugely popular.
“The names of Turkish actors and actresses are gaining popularity abroad. Newborn babies in countries like Bulgaria, Azerbaijan and in many Arab countries are being given names from popular shows such as Barış, Halit, Meyrem, Beren, Serenay and Kıvanç. So we can see the effect of Turkish series abroad spreading to the names of newborns,” said Savaş Uğurlu, a representative from Istanbul-based public relations company Medya Doktoru.
“I and my team have been continuing for years to promote stars like Kıvanç Tatlıtuğ, Tuğba Büyüküstün, Songül Öden, Sedef Avcı, Burak Özçivit, Buğra Gülsoy, Halit Ergenç, Kenan İmirzalıoğlu, Meryem Uzerli and their TV series in the Middle East. Based on demand in the Middle East, we have done various activities with these Turkish TV stars, but recent surveys from the region show that there is a demand for new faces in Turkish series,” Uğurlu added.
Kıvanç Tatlıtuğ is particularly popular in the Arab world and broke millions of hearts after getting married recently.
“There are serious fans who follow Kıvanç’s personal life closely. His marriage was widely reported in media across the Middle East. Although many of his female fans were not pleased he got married, people are generally happy for him,” Uğurlu said.
He added that Turkish stars are also now starting to gain popularity elsewhere in the world.
“Turkish series and TV stars are now getting noticed in countries from the U.S. to Mexico, China to Malaysia - even in Africa. Now, what viewers from various countries that contact us want to see is new faces besides the current ones,” he said.
Productions such as “Muhteşem Yüzyıl” (The Magnificent Century), “Binbir Gece” (1001 Nights), “Ezel” and “Sıla” are now being broadcast in more than 70 countries, 15 years after Turkey first started exporting TV dramas to the Turkic republics in 2001, followed by the Balkans, the Middle East and Latin America. Turkish drama exports hit $200 million in 2014 and $250 million in 2015, according to state-run Anadolu Agency.