Accessible films on screen for the disabled

Accessible films on screen for the disabled

ANKARA - Anadolu Agency
Accessible films on screen for the disabled

Minister Fatma Şahin wears a patch over her eyes during the screening.

The first Ankara Accessible Film Festival has opened at CerModern with a screening of Rezan Yeşilbaş’s film “Sessiz” (Silent), which won the Palm d’Or at the 65th Cannes Film Festival’s Short Film Competition.

The festival, which is geared toward people with audio and visual impairments, was opened Sept. 3 by Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Şahin, while many in the audience wore patches over their eyes during the screening to simulate the movie-watching experience of a person with visual disabilities.

Şahin said Turkey had come late in managing to include disabled people in life. “We need to understand each other to make things easier. This is not the problem of those with disabilities alone. It is the biggest problem of our society that healthy people do not understand those with disabilities. Today, we have achieved a big success in removing handicaps for people with disabilities on the screen. This is why art is very, important; it is universal.”

After the screening, Şahin said: “If we can organize such a festival for our citizens with disabilities, this shows us the level we have reached in this country because they can get involved in social life and go to cultural and artistic events. This is pleasing.” 

Films for free

All films at the Ankara Accessible Film Festival can be seen by everyone for free. As well as feature films, short films, documentaries and children’s films, there will also be talks and workshops during the festival, which runs until Sept. 8. 

The festival aims to ensure that audio and visually impaired people can participate equally in social life.