About ATCP

We are people from Turkey and Armenia whose common ground is cinema. We love cinema. Not only do we love cinema, we also believe in the power of cinema to heal, reconcile and make peace. We believe that cinema can help us say things we were not able to for decades, and help us get to know one another. Not only do we believe, we also act on it!

Meetings of 2010

April 2010 – The fifth meeting
Once again, we are in Istanbul. This time, we concentrate solely on films. The meeting coincides with Istanbul International Film Festival and we meet in Cezayir Meeting Hall. Anadolu Kültür’s call to filmmakers for joint productions, “Let’s Make Films Together,” have generated 42 applications from Turkey and 18 from Armenia. The only prerequisite is to work on joint productions with the involvement of both countries. The proposals are enough to excite us.

Director Özcan Alper, producer Sevilay Demirci, along with Çiğdem Mater from Anadolu Kültür, evaluate the applications, and five filmmakers from both countries are invited to Istanbul for another meeting in April. Another four days of spending time and working together...

Sevilay Demirci and director Hüseyin Karabey share their filmmaking experiences. Then we watch the films made by the 10 participants, followed by presentations. For two days, we listen to 10 inspiring and touching projects. Melek Ulagay Taylan and Nurdan Arca from the independent production company Ajans 21, Sevilay Demirci from Yeni Sinemacılar production company, director Sırrı Süreyya Önder, Artsvi Bakhchinyan from the Golden Apricot, and Çiğdem Mater from Anadolu Kültür decide for five of the projects to receive modest support.

Diana Kardumian’s Galata is a charming short film, a visual feast on Istanbul’s Galata district. Gor Baghdasarian’s documentary Komşular (Neighbors) will tell the daily lives of the villagers on the border of the two countries. In Agop’tan Şükrü’ye Selam Var (Agop Says Hello to Şükrü), Cem Öztüfekçi and Meryem Yavuz tell the stories of train conductors who have met when the border was open a long time ago, and who remember one another after 17 years. Arthur Sukiasyan’s documentary project Güvercin Ustaları (The Pigeon Fanciers) will give a portrait of the old pigeon keepers in Gümrü and Kars. Inspired by the life story of Garabet Orunöz, Gülengül Altıntaş’s Kaybolmayın Çocuklar (Don’t Get Lost, Kids) will reminisce upon Hrant Dink’s haven Tuzla Armenian Children’s Camp, Kamp Armen.

We say goodbye to one another, hoping to watch all of the five films in 2011. There is so much work to do. All of the films will be Armenia-Turkey joint productions. We need to find actors from Turkey for Galata, and actors from Armenia for Kaybolmayın Çocuklar. We need a producer from Armenia for Agop’tan Şükrü’ye Selam Var, and a producer from Kars for Komşular and Güvercin Ustaları. There is so much work to do, but there is so much excitement as well. Let’s start working...

April 2010 – Istanbul Workshop Participants

M. Cem Öztüfekçi, Meryem Yavuz, Zümrüt Burul, Alper Şen, İrfan Aktan, Zeynep Güzel, Nagehan Uskan, Gülengül Altıntaş, Garabet Orunöz, Yüce Yöney, Delal Bozkurt, Gor Baghdasaryan, Diana Kardumyan, Vardan Danielyan, Mariam Ohanyan, Arthur Sukiasyan.

July 2010 – The sixth meeting
Now we know each other. When we see one another we ask about our families, our lovers, our lives. We have friends now, in Turkey and in Armenia...

We are working on the films since April. We correspond every day. Sometimes we get tired, but it definitely is worth it. Relentlessly, we are looking for funding. We can’t wait to begin shooting the films.

We meet in Yerevan once again in the summer heat, in July. The Golden Apricot is bearing its fruits for the seventh time, and filmmakers from Turkey are in Yerevan for ATCP for the third time. There are new people in the groups, we get to know one another once again. There are a lot of old faces as well, everyone is sending their regards to old faces who are not there. Some of the familiar names from the platform are in Yerevan to attend Directors Across Borders this time. One of these names is Müjde Arslan, she is here to present her feature film project...

This time, the Golden Apricot had called for project proposals. Three projects from Turkey and three from Armenia have been selected from heaps of applications. They are here to receive support for their projects.

As always, the meetings are a lot of fun. Fatih Akın, Serge Avédikian and Semih Kaplanoğlu, who happen to be in Yerevan as festival guests, attend the platform meetings as well. They talk about their experiences as filmmakers, listen to our projects, and give us some useful advice. Melek Ulagay Taylan from Ajans 21, Ludmila Cvikova from International Film Festival Rotterdam Hubert Bals Fund, Graziella Bildesheim and Alessandra Pastore from Maia Workshop, Jennifer Sabah from France’s Boa Films, director Krzysztof Zanussi and documentary director Vardan Hovhannisyan also attend the meetings, and discuss cinema and the projects with filmmakers from both countries.

At the end of the three days, ATCP decides to support three projects: Canay Özden and Altan Bal’s Kukla Tiyatrosu (Puppet Theater) from Turkey, Harout Kbeyan’s Aile Ağacı (Family Tree), and Nigol Bezdjian’s İstanbul’un Sokaklarında Bir Gezinti (A Stroll on the Streets of Istanbul) from Lebanon.

Now, we have eight films to make!

July 2010 – Yerevan Workshop Participants
Vuslat Saraçoğlu, Fırat Erdoğmuş, Canay Özden, Sayat Dağlıyan, Harut Kbeyan, Nigol Bezjian, Jeff Kalousdian, Gagik Harutyunyan.

A Blurry Pastel Painting
After This Day
The Oud Maker