Azeri director hopes to shoot in Istanbul
ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
‘I would like to do a movie in Istanbul but I have not received any invitation,’ says the Oscar-winning Azerbaijani director Rustam İbragimbekov in his Istanbul visit. AA photoOscar-winning Azerbaijani director Rustam İbragimbekov has expressed the desire to shoot a film in Istanbul during a recent visit to the city, while also noting the difficulties of touching on the Armenian issue in his native country.
“I visited Istanbul in 2000, when I staged a theater play titled ‘Looks like a tiger.’ I come here very often,” he recently said. “I would like to do a movie in Istanbul but I have not received any invitation.”
İbragimbekov received an Oscar in 1994 for the movie “Sun Burn.” He was awarded the title of Commander of the French Order of Arts and Letters in 2000 but renounced the award earlier this year in protest against a French law criminalizing the refusal of qualifying the 1915 events as “the Armenian genocide.”
“I do not think that it is right to use the word ‘genocide.’ France is ready to accept this without analyzing the documents, while Turkey is ready to open the archives. I think this is wrong. That’s why I did not take the award,” said İbragimbekov.
Noting that his friends from France also supported his decision on the renunciation, İbragimbekov said: “The award is at my place currently. If the law is [again put through], I will give the award back to them. If not, I will keep it.”
İbragimbekov also noted some of the troubles he had in writing stories about Azeris and Armenians.
“I have a plot on a relationship between an Azeri man and an Armenian girl. However, they did not accept this in Azerbaijan. I do not focus on historical issues in my movies. This plot is different; it focuses on the events that took place in the 1990s, which ended with the freedom of Azerbaijan,” said İbragimbekov, adding that the plot had a very tragic ending, just like Romeo and Juliet. “What I am trying to tell with this plot is that the public is living in peace and that there is no problem between them.”
Noting that the location of the real problem was in government and not in society, İbragimbekov said: “Everyone gets along with each other in society. I know many Armenians and Turks who get along very well with each other. The problem is not in society.”