Russell Crowe meets Turkish culture minister, seeks assistance for new project

Russell Crowe meets Turkish culture minister, seeks assistance for new project

Russell Crowe meets Turkish culture minister, seeks assistance for new project

Oscar winning actor Russell Crowe and Culture Minister Ömer Çelik met at Istanbul's Topkapı Palace on Oct. 12. AA photo

Famous Hollywood actor Russell Crowe has met with Turkish Culture and Tourism Minister Ömer Çelik to request assistance in preparations for his new film, set in Turkey during the Battle of the Dardanelles.

The film tells the story of an Australian father who came to Turkey in 1916 to look for his two sons who went missing in action during the Battle of the Dardanelles. 

At a meeting at Istanbul's Topkapı Palace with Çelik, Crowe said that he had visited many places in Turkey for film shootings and was impressed by Turkey and Turkish culture. He is planning to work with Turkish actors in the film. 

Çelik stressed that the script of Crowe’s film, which will be shot in Turkey, was important as it showed the common history between Turkey and Australia. He said the Turkish government, which gave 59 million Turkish Liras in grants to Turkish cinema between 2005 and 2012, would continue to support such productions.

Film on Anzacs

“The film is about the Anzacs, who fought in the Battle of the Dardanelles in Çanakkale. We organize ceremonies every year for the Anzacs. This ceremony is very important both for us and the Australians. As Turkish people, we show our respect for the Anzacs, who came from Australia and died in our country. We are very happy that this film will be made in Turkey,” Çelik said.

For his part, the Hollywood superstar once again expressed his admiration for Turkey. “I am in Turkey for the third time and visited many places to determine the best site for the shooting. We were in Istanbul, Edirne and Cappadocia. A short time ago we were in Fethiye and had the chance to visit Kayaköy and Tlos. I am impressed by Turkish culture and Turkey’s beauty,” he said. 

Following his meeting with Çelik, Crowe told press members that he had chosen Turkey because the script was about Turkish history. “Those people lived here; this is why we came here," he said. 

When asked about Turkish actors he knew, Crowe said he knew Yılmaz Erdoğan, Kıvanç Tatlıtuğ, Cem Yılmaz and Nurgül Yeşilçay, adding that he found Turkish films "fantastic" and mentioning that the government also supported film production and encouraged artists and producers. 

Crowe said the locations of his latest project were still not clear yet and that this was what he discussed with Minster Çelik. "Some of the locations are in Istanbul and the rest along south coast. It depends on whether or not we receive permission,” he said. “Everyone in Australia respects Çanakkale.” 

Turkish actor Yılmaz Erdoğan and his wife, Belçim Bilgin Erdoğan, also participated in part of the meeting. Speaking to the press after the meeting, Erdoğan said he would like to act in Crowe’s film but that this decision was down to the producers.