Book published on Istanbul as film setting

Book published on Istanbul as film setting

ISTANBUL - Anadolu Agency
Book published on Istanbul as film setting

The book focuses on Istanbul’s beauty and its reflection in films and books over the years, focusing on many popular locations. Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s ‘Three Monkeys’ was set in the nearby Eminönü. DAILY NEWS photo, Emrah GÜREL

A new book published as part of the Istanbul Municipality Culture Association’s “Istanbul’s Faces Series” explores the presentation of Istanbul on the silver screen. 

Researcher and writer Semra Kır has prepared the title, which gathers together the many movies and books that took place in Istanbul. “100 Films of Istanbul” reveals both the popular and the unknown movies on Istanbul, and has been published to mark the 99th year of Turkish cinema. 

The book focuses on Istanbul’s beauty and its reflection in films and books over the years, focusing on such popular locations as the Galata Bridge, the Princes’ Islands, the Bosphorus Strait, Rumeli Hisarı, the Grand Bazaar, Haydarpaşa Train Station, Eminönü, Balat, and Beyoğlu. 

Movies set in Istanbul contribute to the city’s urban memory and show people how the city has evolved and developed over time. Each movie is described in the book with details of its director and plot, and a number of cult movies are presented with their posters. 

Famous Turkish directors such as Halit Refiğ, Memduh Ün, Osman Seden, Metin Erksan and Lütfi Ömer Akad are featured in the book, which discusses almost 100 years of Istanbul’s celluloid culture.

Haydarpaşa Station and the Bosphorus are among the locations that directors have traditionally found most irresistible in the city, and in some of the movies the Bosphorus even appears as a character. 

Houses and old mansions

Istanbul’s houses and old mansions are other popular recurring motifs for movies set in Istanbul. 

The book devotes its pages to the films that reflect the beauty of the city in the best and most interesting way. The opens with a scene from Muhsin Ertuğrul’s 1966 film “Bir Millet Uyanıyor” (A Nation is Awakening) showing Mehmet Ali Bengü’s mansion on Ethem Efendi Street, which is in Erenköy, on the Anatolian side of the city. Galata Bridge and Rumeli Hisarı are among the other main settings in the movie.

The book does not only focus on the old Istanbul, but also the contemporary and new version of the city. It is possible to discover the old city with some of the famous movies such as Faruk Genç’s “Yılmaz Ali,” which features the Golden Horn, the Süleymaniye Mosque, and Beyazıt Square, in the year 1952. The Grand Bazaar is one of the main settings in Lütfi Ömer Akad’s “Kanun Namına” (In the Name of the Law). Metin Erksan’s cult movie “Şoför Nebahat” (Driver Nebahat), on the other hand, is notable for showing an unpopulated Taksim Square.

The contemporary Istanbul is also showcased in the book, particularly the Galata neighborhood where many modern moviews are shot. One of the most famous recent Turkish movies is set in the nearby neighborhood of Eminönü, Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s “Üç Maymun” (Three Monkeys), while “Dinle Neyden” (Listen to it from the Ney) focuses on the Topkapı Palace, the Haseki, Galata and many other historical locations in the city.