Şırnak officials seeking to exhibit vessel from Hollywood blockbuster Noah

Şırnak officials seeking to exhibit vessel from Hollywood blockbuster Noah

ŞIRNAK – Doğan News Agency
Şırnak officials seeking to exhibit vessel from Hollywood blockbuster Noah

The recent Hollywood blockbuster starring Russell Crowe, himself is shooting a movie on the ANZACs campaign in Turkey.

Şırnak has its eyes on the replica of Noah’s Ark, used in the recent Hollywood blockbuster starring Russell Crowe, in order to boost tourism in the remote southeastern province.

According to a slight variation in the Quran, Noah’s Ark came to rest not on the Mount Ararat but on the Mount Cudi, a mythical mountain close to modern-day Cizre, which is located in Şırnak province.

Looking to capitalize on the fact that Noah’s Ark has also become a well-known feature in popular culture, local officials in Şırnak have revealed their intention to bring the vessel built for the movie to the province. Previously, the Trojan Horse used in the movie “Troy,” featuring Brad Pitt and Orlando Bloom, was transported to Çanakkale.

“We are planning to install the vessel on a vacant land near the foot of Mount Cudi and to preserve the place as a national park,” said Cihan Birlik, head of Şırnak’s Culture and Tourism Association, which is planning to sponsor the state in their project.

Still, their task seems to be a bit more complicated compared to Çanakkale officials who only had to ensure the transportation of the giant Trojan horse from Greece. Many scenes from the movie were in fact shot in Panama, Central America.

The Hollywood setting is only part of the ambitious project, Birlik is quoted as saying. He added that they were planning to take animals to the location so the area has more of lively representation of Noah’s Ark.

Şırnak Gov. Hasan İpek also gave his blessing to the idea, forecasting a boom in tourism if the project is implemented. “There will be an explosion of tourism, which will trigger an explosion in development and employment,” said İpek, adding that they expected to hold talks with the culture minister regarding the project.

On a more grave tone, İpek also suggested that such a project could help to change Şırnak’s image, as the province has been heavily affected by a long state of emergency, as well as the Uludere/Roboski Massacre of 2011.

“No investment has been made in the province due to these incidents. We want to overcome this with beautiful projects,” he said.

The memories of a military airstrike that cost the lives of 34 civilian villagers in the village of Ortasu (Roboski in Kurdish) in Şırnak’s Uludere district on Dec. 28, 2011, are still fresh in the province, as recent military prosecutors dismissed an investigation into the case.