STOCKHOLM - Anadolu Agency
The Institute for Turkish Studies, which was recently opened at Stockholm University, organized a panel discussion during the weekend on the impact of Turkish TV series in foreign countries
During the panel titled ‘Turkish Wave in Television Series,’ attendees discussed the populairty of Turkish TV series in Sweden and the world. ‘The End’ (above) is being shown Sweden and draws too much interest by Swedish audiences.
A panel discussion on Turkish TV series, which are very popular in many countries, was held during the weekend in the Swedish capital Stockholm. Organized at Stockholm Zita Movie Theater under the title “Turkish Wave in Television Series,” the panel was hosted by the Institute for Turkish Studies, recently opened at Stockholm University.
The moderator of the panel was the chairman of the institute, Dr. Paul T. Levin. Turkish Ay Productions Director Kerem Çatay, Swedish television PR and marketing responsible Magdelana Löfström, Istanbul Kadir Has University Head of the Radio, Television and Cinema Department Associate Professor Melis Behlil and New Media Department member Eylem Yanardağoğlu and Sparks Network Sales Director Fredric af Malmborg were among the speakers.
During the panel, scenes from popular Turkish TV series “Med Cezir” (Ebb and Flow), “20 Dakika” (20 Minutes) and “Ezel” were shown. Also, a part of the documentary “Kısmet,” which features the changes is the views and daily lives of viewers in Middle Eastern countries caused by Turkish series were also shown.
Opening the panel, Levin said Turkish TV series was opened up to the world with “Gümüş” (Noor) and today they were being shown in many countries in the Middle East, Balkans, Russia
and Far Eastern regions. He said “Son” (The End) was shown on Swedish state television SVT and drew large interest.
He said Turkish artists in the series had huge fans in the country. Levin said Turkish TV series were good tools for the promotion of Istanbul and Turkey. “Turkey’s image is positively promoted with to these series.” Turkish Ay Productions Director Çatay said Turkish TV series were made upon the demand of Turkish TV channels and they did not include any political propaganda. “These series are made for people to watch on television. We produce the series considering the Turkish audience. The successful ones are sold to foreign countries,” he said.
Impact of Yeşilçam on TV series
Professor Behlil mentioned Turkish people’s habit of watching old Turkish films, adding those old films also drew interest in Middle Eastern countries. She said, “TV series are inspired by these films and are produced. Middle Eastern countries’ culture is very close to ours and they show interest in our films.”
Behlil said the impact of the TV series was expected to continue over the next few years. “Growth in the TV series sector may stop sometime later but I don’t think it will stop completely, because we have many good actors and they take their work seriously.”
Another speaker in the panel, Yanardağoğlu talked about the results of their university’s study conducted over Turkish TV series viewers in Palestine and Egypt in 2011. She said they had asked women in both countries why they were watching Turkish series, and received common answers.
“Participants drew attention to the increasing quality of Turkish series. Turkish film companies give importance to renovating film techniques. Also, Turkey’s culture and religion is close to these countries.
Another reason is Turkey’s change in foreign policy. This caused Turkish series to draw more interest. They also realize the effects of modernization in the country. They find some of Turkey’s qualities too western. Man-woman relations are interesting to them,” she said.
Yanardağoğlu said Turkish TV series’ impacting stories are a reason why they are also popular in Europe.
Löfström, the SVT television’s official, which last year broadcasted “The End,” said after the U.S. TV series, they chose Turkey’s “The End” and it drew large interest from Swedish viewers.
Sparks Network Sales Director Malmborg said they could bring other Turkish TV series because the first one drew such interest. Malmborg did not provide any information about these series but it was reported that talks had been continuing to broadcast “20 Minutes” in Swedish television after January of next year.