Cinema of Turkey at Tarkovsky’s school

Cinema of Turkey at Tarkovsky’s school

Moscow is where more than 200 theaters are active. Moscow accommodates the highest number of millionaires in the world and maybe it is the most expensive city in the world. It boasts with its 400-odd libraries. Moscow is where people rush to their exceptional subways with their books in their hands. Moscow, with its maddening traffic… 

Among all these, I am curious what the situation of animation is in Russian cinema. This might sound weird, but for a person like me who is an animation freak, it is understandable.

Russia is a country where many people who have made cinema and art have lived. Today, Russian cinema is introverted. We are pondering why the two countries have not cooperated in this field. This is why “Cinema of Turkey and World Academic Meetings” are important. These meetings, first of all, introduce people and sectors to each other. Second is to understand the dynamics of the cinema sector of the visited country; also to express the strengths and problems of our own cinema.

It is true that we have become stronger in world cinema. Valuable films are coming back with prizes from important festivals. However, these successes should not be limited to the stories we tell ourselves. For the sustainability of these achievements, we should correctly understand the dynamics of our cinema; also, to establish long lasting partnerships, we should listen to the other party carefully. The importance of the academic language stands out here.

For the activity “Introduce the Cinema of Turkey with the Cinema of the World” (TSDAB) the first stop has been Russia, which is absolutely a correct start. The next will be countries such as China, United Arab Emirates, Morocco, Palestine and Spain.

While we are entering the building that was named after Sergei Gerasimov in 1986, VGIK (All-Russian State University of Cinematography), I am thinking that this place was founded in 1919 by Vladimir Gardin. It has famous graduates as Bondarchuk, Klimov, Patajanov, Sokurov and Tarkovsky.

The International Student Festival of the school is happy to host the TSDAB. Student attendance is high in panels. They have many questions to ask people involved in Turkish cinema. They want to learn the most how to manage joint productions and much more…

The VGIK is not only a school that is proud of its past. It has such a structure that it is continuously active in art production, primarily cinema, and it elevates the work of its students. Their technical equipment is suitable for this. 

In this meeting, three selected films from Cinema of Turkey were screened and seminars were held after them with debates held with the participation of VGIK academics, students and sector staff, as well as producers of the films, directors and actors. 

In order to be able to speak precisely about the contribution of this project, one needs to wait for the other legs to be completed, and then examine the reports written on them. In the second leg of the project, a meeting in Spain is scheduled.

Nevertheless, one can say the first leg, that is the Moscow meeting, has definitely been able to reach its aim. I was able to chat with Oleg, who is a student in cinema directorship, and Ludmilla, who is a student for script writing, during the activity. We were at those corridors where Tarkovsky had walked.

Ludmilla’s words were an answer to many questions in my mind: “If art is going to save the world, then we need to be better informed of what is going on in the world art scene.”