Istanbul set for massive film center
ISTANBULA district on Istanbul’s western outskirts has taken a blockbuster step to become a cinema leader in Europe after laying the foundations for the Midwood Istanbul Film Studio Complex, which will be the largest on the continent.
The Midwood project will make Turkey a significant arts and cinema player in Europe, said the deputy speaker of Turkey’s parliament, Mehmet Akif Hamzaçebi.
“Cinema is acting, script and technology. Actually, it is life itself but a huge infrastructure is necessary to realize all these things. Here, we are talking about a project [that will make Turkey big] enough to compete against Hollywood and Bollywood. I believe that when this project is realized, Turkey will make its name heard in the field of world cinema,” he said.
Büyükçekmece Mayor Hasan Akgün said the project had great importance for not only Turkey but also the whole world.
“Everything related to the project has been delicately planned. It is 30 minutes from Atatürk Airport and 35 minutes from the new airport. It is close to airports and also on the land transport network. When the project is done, a minimum of 10,000 people in an around Büyükçekmece will make a living from here. This is also very important to us,” he said.
Equipment of $150 million
Ahmet San, the chair of the project developer, Midwood A.Ş., said they would bring the sector’s representatives together thanks to the project. “I decided to make this project six years ago. I searched on ‘who and how’ for a year. I also searched for all details in the global sector for two years. I did not carry out any commercial activities when doing all these things.”
After conducting his research in Turkey and around the world, San said he decided to open a studio with equipment worth $150 million.
Midwood A.Ş. CEO Emin Günal said the Midwood project would become a Turkish brand, adding that they would invest 825 million Turkish Liras on a plot of land that is around 50 hectares.
When the Midwood Istanbul Film Studio Complex is finished, films will be shot at a minimum of 20 areas on site, said Günal.
“We have a five-star plus accommodation facility for celebrities to stay, sports, a children’s area, as well as eating and drinking areas and parks. We have 21 studios and 17 open-air sets. Actually, the entire area is a film studio,” he said, adding that there would also be a cinema museum and educational centers for students of all ages, from primary school to university.
The studio will also have 18 production facilities and all equipment necessary to shoot films.