Global Travel Media » Blog Archive » The 38th Istanbul Film Festival to Kick Off On 5 April

Home » Events / Whats On » Currently Reading:

The 38th Istanbul Film Festival to Kick Off On 5 April

March 15, 2019 Events / Whats On No Comments Email Email

Organised by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV), Turkey’s largest film event,
Istanbul Film Festival is preparing to meet cinema lovers for the 38th time. The 38th Istanbul Film Festival, with a programme comprising highlights from Turkey and world cinema, will take place between 5 and 16 April 2019.

Istanbul Film Festival presents a rich programme in its 38th edition ranging from the recent productions of world cinema to cult films, to the largest showcase from Turkey and classics alike, new discoveries, and future masterpieces. The festival presents 175 feature-length, 11 short films, in 19 different sections. Besides the screening of a total of 186 films by 187 directors from 45 countries, the festival will feature Q&As and festival talks with visiting filmmakers, actors and actresses, concerts, and other special events.

The 38th Istanbul Film Festival Press Conference

The press conference of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival was held on Wednesday, 13 March at The Marmara Taksim, the Official Hotel Sponsor of İKSV.

In his opening speech, İKSV General Director Görgün Taner said: “Many things have changed from the first edition of the festival to the present; the words such as sustainability, digitalisation are now used very often in our daily life. Especially, digitalisation has changed both our practices of life and our approach to culture and arts, as well as all of our behaviour. But I believe that some of our aspirations and needs are still the same in 2019: to see a programme featuring carefully selected productions from Turkey and the international arena, to participate in a cultural and artistic event that gives us intellectual pleasure, to watch the productions of cinema masters and new talents on the big screen with excitement… We, as İKSV, will continue to work to make all of these possible. It is not easy to realise festivals. In addition to the sponsorships of private companies, we deeply value the contributions of the cultural attachés of various countries in Turkey, cultural institutions, consulates, İKSV Tulip Card members, audience who purchase tickets to attend the festival and, of course, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.”

Director of the Istanbul Film Festival, Kerem Ayan, introducing the 38th edition of the festival and its programme, later unveiled the films to vie in the International Competition, Human Rights in Cinema Competition, National Competition, National Documentary Competition, and the National Short Film Competition.

Head of Meetings on the Bridge, Gülin Üstün, revealed further information about the 14th edition of the Meetings on the Bridge, the co-production platform of the Istanbul Film Festival, which brings filmmakers, directors and scriptwriters from Turkey and the neighbouring countries together with professionals from the international film industry.

The poster of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival by the Berlin-based artist Sebastian Bieniek

History of cinema is full of iconic characters. Hundreds of these characters met with film lovers in the history of Istanbul Film Festival. This year, the festival will once again bring together hundreds of new characters who will take us under their influence.

This year, the festival also brings forth one of the most iconic characters of cinema to its poster. The 38th Istanbul Film Festival, commemorating the legendary director Stanley Kubrick will feature a poster referencing Alex’ character in A Clockwork Orange, one of Kubrick’s most renowned films.

The poster visuals are prepared by the Berlin-based artist, photographer, director and writer Sebastian Bieniek, world-renowned with his ongoing series of experimental photographs Doublefaced, featuring portraits creating the illusion of two faces that remind us of humans’ duplicitous nature in an imaginative way.

The promotion campaign of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival is undertaken by TBWA.

Festival Opening Film: Edmond by Alexis Michalik

This year’s opening film will be Edmond, the latest film of Alexis Michalik, the young genius, dramaturge, actor, and playwright known as “the prince of French theatre” adapts and directs the film version of his blockbuster play of the same name which won numerous Molière awards. Brisk, ingenious, riveting with top-notch acting and direction Edmond centres around a young playwright who finds fame early on just like Michalik himself. Set in Paris in 1897 during the Belle Epoque, the film tells the creation story of his much beloved play Cyrano de Bergerac, which Edmond Rostand penned when he was experiencing a writer’s block.

Eight movie theatres

The 38th Istanbul Film Festival films will be screened at eight movie theatres: Atlas and Beyoğlu movie theatres, as well as Pera Museum Auditorium in the Beyoğlu district, Cinemaximum City’s Nişantaşı (two halls), Cinemaximum Zorlu Center in Gayrettepe, Rexx and Kadıköy movie theatres in Kadıköy.

The screenings will be at 11.00, 13.30, 16.00, 19.00 and 21.30.

The festival’s gift to students prevails this year: with the support of the patrons, student tickets for 11.00, 13.30 and 16.00 screenings on weekdays will be sold for 2 TL.

Yapı Kredi Culture Centre, will once again be the festival centre of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival. The centre, which will host press meetings, panel discussions, festival talks, seminars and other related events, will be the heart of the festival.

Cinema Awards

The Cinema Awards of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival will be presented to four revered figures of Turkish cinema, during the opening ceremony of the festival at UNIQ Istanbul on Thursday, 4 April.

The Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to Şerif Gören, the director of Yol, which brought the “Palme d’Or” to Turkish Cinema. The “Golden Boy” of Turkish Cinema, Göksel Arsoy, and the indispensable actress of the formidable female roles, Selda Alkor will receive Honorary Cinema Awards. The Outstanding Contribution to Cinema Award will go to the founding member of the Turkish Cinematheque Association, Jak Şalom.

Meetings on the Bridge

Meetings on the Bridge, organised within the scope of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival for the 14th time, brings filmmakers from Turkey and the neighbouring countries together with international film professionals, and will take place between 7 and 12 April with the contributions of Anadolu Efes.

While providing an opportunity for filmmakers to hold the first international presentations of their new film projects at Film Development Workshop and films in post-production at Work in Progress, Meetings on the Bridge also aims to pave the way for co-productions and organises panels, master classes and forums. Neighbours platform was launched in 2015 in order to initiate new collaborations and enhance communication between filmmakers from Turkey and the neighbouring countries. The Neighbours platform builds a ground for institutions and individuals to co-operate while facilitating the development of common stories.

The award reception of Meetings on the Bridge will take place on Friday, 12 April.

For detailed programme:

Competitions across the festival

The competitions of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival will begin on 10 April. The winners of the International Competition, Human Rights in Cinema, National Competition, the National Documentary and the National Short Film competitions will be announced at the 38th Istanbul Film Festival Award Ceremony to be held on Tuesday, 16 April.


In the International Competition section of the Istanbul Film Festival, 12 films from 10 countries, under the “New Perspectives in Cinema” theme will vie for the Golden Tulip.

The International Competition, presented in memory of Şakir Eczacıbaşı, one of the co-founders of the Festival, will be supported with monetary prizes bestowed by the Eczacıbaşı Group. The director of the Best Film will be awarded the Golden Tulip, the grand prize of the festival, and 10,000 Euros, the local distribution company of the film in Turkey will be awarded 50,000 TL, and the director of the film to receive the Special Jury Prize will be awarded 5,000 Euros.

The jury of the International Competition, presided by one of Britain’s most original and creative independent filmmakers and director of the award winning films Lynne Ramsay, comprises Canadian award-winning film director and screenwriter Philippe Lesage, award-winning actress Damla Sönmez, one of Ireland’s most celebrated and respected new round of actors, Moe Dunford, and director of the Berlinale European Film Market, Matthijs Wouter Knol.

International Competition films:

  • Gräns / Border / Ali Abbasi (Sweden, Denmark)
  • Nebula / Dead Horse Nebula / Tarık Aktaş (Turkey)
  • Talking About Trees / Suhaib Gasmelbari (Sudan, France, Chad)
  • Bait / Mark Jenkin (UK)
  • Diane / Kent Jones (USA)
  • Bolsae / House of Hummingbird / Bora Kim (South Korea)
  • Rojo / Benjamin Naishtat (Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Germany, France, Switzerland)
  • Les Confins du Monde / To the Ends of the World / Guillaume Nicloux (France, Belgium)
  • In Fabric / Peter Strickland (UK)
  • Delband / Beloved / Yaser Talebi (İran)
  • Aether / Rûken Tekeş (Turkey, Italy)
  • Podbrosy / Jumpman / Ivan I. Tverdovsky (Russia, Lithuania, Ireland, France)


The Human Rights in Cinema Award presented only at the Istanbul Film Festival since 2007 in collaboration with Eurimages, comprises a 5,000 Euros monetary prize, and will be given to a film in this section, which raises public awareness and interest in human rights issues and creates better understanding of their importance.

The Jury is comprised of director Florin Şerban, who won the Grand Jury Prize at the Berlinale and the Alfred Bauer Prize with his first feature If I Want to Whistle, I Whistle for innovation in cinema; actress, director and theatre writer Nihal Koldaş; and director, video artist and filmmaker Adrian Figueroa.

Human Rights in Cinema Competition films:

  • Diciembres / Decembers / Enrique Castro Ríos (Panama, Colombia)
  • Damien veut changer le monde / Adopt a Daddy / Xavier De Choudens (France)
  • Jeszcze Dzien Zycia / Another Day of Life / Raúl De La Fuente & Damian Nenow (Poland, Spain, Germany, Hungary)
  • Angels Are Made of Light / James Longley (USA, Denmark, Norway)
  • #FEMALE PLEASURE / Barbara Miller (Switzerland, Germany)
  • What You Gonna Do When the World’s on Fire? / Roberto Minervini (Italy, USA, France)
  • Marighella / Wagner Moura (Brazil)
  • Joy / Sudabeh Mortezai (Austria)
  • Angelo / Markus Schleinzer (Austria, Luxembourg)
  • Saf / Ali Vatansever (Turkey, Germany, Romania)


9 films completed in the 2018-19 season will be vying for the Golden Tulip in the National Competition of the festival–together with the Out of Competition titles, 10 fiction features will have their world premieres and 1 film will have its Turkey premiere.

The National Competition Jury will distribute awards in 9 categories: Golden Tulip Best Film, Best Director, Special Prize of the Jury, Best Actress, Best Actor, Best Screenplay, Best Cinematographer, Best Editing, and Best Original Music.

Golden Tulip Best Film in the National Competition will be awarded with 150,000 TL, the film winning the Special Prize of the Jury in memory of Onat Kutlar will be awarded 50,000 TL. The prizes for Best Actress and Best Actor will be 10.000 TL each. Best Director will be awarded 50.000 TL given by Anadolu Efes.

The jury to evaluate the films in the National Competition for the 38th Istanbul Film Festival will be headed by director, writer, and scriptwriter Ümit Ünal. Fellow jury members include actress Derya Alabora, actor Alican Yücesoy, cinematographer Andreas Sinanos, and writer and scriptwriter Gaye Boralıoğlu.

National Competition films:

  • Nebula / Dead Horse Nebula / Tarık Aktaş (Turkey)
  • Kız Kardeşler / A Tale of Three Sisters / Emin Alper (Turkey, Germany, The Netherlands, Greece)
  • Aden / Eden / Barış Atay (Turkey)
  • Kardeşler / Brothers / Ömür Atay (Turkey, Germany, Bulgaria)
  • Güvercin Hırsızları / The Pigeon Thieves / Osman Nail Doğan (Turkey)
  • Görülmüştür / Passed by Censor / Serhat Karaaslan (Turkey, Germany, France)
  • İçerdekiler / Insiders / Hüseyin Karabey (Turkey)
  • Saf / Ali Vatansever (Turkey, Germany, Romania)
  • Yuva / Emre Yeksan (Turkey)

Out of Competition:

  • Kader Postası / / Fated Hearts / Elif Akarsu Polat, Çiğdem Bozalı (Turkey)
  • Arada / Di Navberê De / In Between / Ali Kemal Çınar (Turkey)
  • Suç Unsuru / The Element of Crime / Süleyman Arda Eminçe (Turkey)
  • Son Çıkış / Siren’s Call / Ramin Matin (Turkey)


The Istanbul Film Festival will be awarding a 10,000 TL-worth Best Documentary Award to the winner of the competition. The National Documentary Competition jury consists of director and producer Melek Ulagay Taylan, documentary filmmaker Diana Näcke, and director Didem Pekün.

National Documentary Competition films:

  • Meleklerin Koruyucusu / Guardian of Angels / Ensar Altay (Turkey, USA)
  • Tanrı Göçmen Çocukları Sever mi Anne? / Do You Think God Loves Immigrant Kids, Mom? / Rena Lusin Bitmez (Turkey)
  • Şehitler / Heroes / Köken Ergun (Turkey, Australia)
  • Yaz Kış Demeden / Come Rain or Shine / Zeynep Güzel (Turkey, Armenia)
  • Köpek Filmi / Dog Movie / Cem Hakverdi (Turkey)
  • Bulutlar / Clouds / Osman Nuri İyem (Turkey)
  • Kâzım / Dilek Kaya (Turkey)
  • Gulyabani / Gürcan Keltek (The Netherlands, Turkey)
  • Baştan Başa / Heads and Tails / Aylin Kuryel, Fırat Yücel (Turkey)
  • Vargit Zamanı / Time to Leave / Orhan Tekeoğlu (Turkey)
  • Aether / Rûken Tekeş (Turkey, Italy)

Out of Competition:

  • Amina / Kıvılcım Akay (Turkey)


The National Short Film Competition is organised to encourage short film-making, supporting the development in this field, and bringing together the audience and short films of quality. The jury, composed of award-winning short film director Umut Subaşı, actress Esme Madra, and actor Halil Babür will select the Best Short Film from among 11 films which will be awarded 5,000 TL sponsored by Anadolu Efes. FIPRESCI will also select a film to award the FIPRESCI Prize in this category.

National Short Film Competition films:

  • Akvaryum / Aquarium / Anıl Kaya, Özgür Önurme (Turkey)
  • Sonsuz / Ad Infinitum / Murat Çetinkaya (Turkey)
  • Gümüş / The Gentle Sadness of Things / Deniz Telek (Turkey)
  • Avarya / Gökalp Gönen (Turkey)
  • Giderayak / Parting Shot / Özgür Cem Aksoy (Turkey)
  • Durgun Suyun Sayhası / Schrei Des Stillen Wassers / Scream of Still Water / Yusuf Elbaşı (Turkey, Germany)
  • Kuyruk / The Tail / Yiğit Hepsev (Turkey)
  • Pantolon / Pantor / Trousers / Tahsin Özmen (Turkey)
  • Sevinç Vesaire / Joy Et Cetera / Kurtcebe Turgul (Turkey)
  • Görüşme / The Conversation / Vehbi Bozdağ (Turkey)
  • Amca / The Geezer / Senem Bay (Turkey)


The Istanbul Film Festival presents the Seyfi Teoman Best Debut Film Prize in memoriam director and producer Seyfi Teoman, who passed away in 2012. Director of the film awarded with the Seyfi Teoman Best Debut Film Prize will be presented 30,000 TL by CMYLMZ Fikirsanat. All the 6 debut feature fiction films from Turkey in the Cinema of Turkey (National Competition and “Out of Competition”) sections are eligible for the prize. Seyfi Teoman Best Debut Film Prize jury consists of program manager and one of the curators of the Berlinale Forum Anna Hoffman, director Banu Sıvacı, and actress Elit İşcan.

Films to compete for the Seyfi Teoman Best Debut Film Award:

  • Nebula / Dead Horse Nebula / Tarık Aktaş (Turkey)
  • Kardeşler / Brothers / Ömür Atay (Turkey, Germany, Bulgaria)
  • Güvercin Hırsızları / The Pigeon Thieves / Osman Nail Doğan (Turkey)
  • Görülmüştür / Passed by Censor / Serhat Karaaslan (Turkey, Germany, France)
  • Kader Postası / / Fated Hearts / Elif Akarsu Polat, Çiğdem Bozalı ( Turkey)
  • Suç Unsuru / The Element of Crime / Süleyman Arda Eminçe (Turkey)


The International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI) will award the FIPRESCI Award to a film each from the International Competition, the National Competition, and the National Short Film Competition. The FIPRESCI jury will be presided by Victoriia Smirnova from Russia and will include Margarita Chapatte from Spain, Nada Azhari Gillon from France, Angelo Mitchievici from Romania and Okan Arpaç and Roggero Calich from Turkey.

Festival’s stellar sections: Galas, No More Flowers, Mined Zone, Musicians and others…

Istanbul Film Festival’s popular section Galas will include the Turkey premieres of 12 most anticipated films by celebrated directors and star actors. This year, the Galas section features a wide array of interesting, award-winning, and striking productions, including Kenneth Branagh’s All is True, a portrait of William Shakespeare during the last three years of life; Claire Denis’s High Life, a sci-fi boasting an impressive cast featuring Robert Pattinson, Juliette Binoche, and Mia Goth; The White Crow, a biopic of legendary ballet dancer Rudolph Nureyev directed by the celebrated actor Ralph Fiennes; and more…

The No More Flowers section of the festival brings together 10 films featuring strong women as protagonists. From Hungary to Syria, Vietnam to Romania, women in these films stand up for their rights.

The Mined Zone section brings together 9 unusual, extraordinary, ground-breaking, edgy, exciting, blood-fuelled and “challenging” films outside the mainstream with their style, form, approach, technique or narrative will be attractive especially for cinephiles looking for some thrills.

Cinema lovers and music enthusiasts come together for the films in the Musicians section of the festival, which brings together unique and striking stories of iconic names of the history of music for whom music is indispensable.

The Where Are You My Love? section of the festival once again brings together films that emphasise love has no age or gender and there are thousand ways to find and look for love.

Factory of Masterpieces: Kubrick

This year, the festival commemorates legendary director Stanley Kubrick on the 20th anniversary of his passing. One of the special sections of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival, Factory of Masterpieces: Kubrick beckons the fans and younger generations who haven’t watched the films of this influential director to the movie theatre to the silver screen experience. Remastered copies of 13 feature films directed by Stanley Kubrick will be screened, thus presenting the director’s filmography in its entirety:

  • Eyes Wide Shut (1999)
  • Full Metal Jacket (1987)
  • The Shining (1980)
  • Barry Lyndon (1975)
  • A Clockwork Orange (1971)
  • 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
  • Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
  • Lolita (1962)
  • Spartacus (1960)
  • Paths of Glory (1957)
  • The Killing (1956)
  • Killer’s Kiss (1955)
  • Fear and Desire (1953)

A Turkish film classic, Şerif Gören’s “Ten Women” is on the screen with its restored copy

The Istanbul Film Festival has been running the project Turkish Classics Revisited with the support of Zurich Sigorta, renovating significant works of the Turkish cinema and reintroducing them to contemporary viewers. This year, esteemed director Şerif Gören’s 1987 masterpiece On Kadın / Ten Women will be restored by Atlas Post Production to be screened during the festival.

Palm d’Or-winning master director Şerif Gören, who often has tackled women’s issues in his films, adapted Hüseyin Kuzu’s script to present portraits of women dealing with problems in a male-dominated world. Şerif Gören will receive the Festival’s Lifetime Achievement Award this year.

On Kadın starring Türkan Şoray, who received Istanbul Film Festival’s Cinema Honorary Award in 1996, will be screened from its digital copy restored with the support of Zurich Sigorta by Atlas Post Production. The gala screening of the restored version of On Kadın / Ten Women will take place on Wednesday, 10 April at Cinemaximum Nişantaşı City’s.

Follow the festival on social media

All films in the festival programme were tagged in different categories to ensure a smoother and easier selection process for our audiences as they make their itineraries for the Istanbul Film Festival.

You can follow all updates, further information on the films, events, and guests, as well as tips on the programme of the Istanbul Film Festival on our social media accounts. The audience will get to know the programme better, get a chance to win surprise presents, and be part of the festival by using the hashtag #istfilmfest.

The İKSV Mobil app, sponsored by the Loodos Tech, has been redesigned for a better experience,! You can create your own profile with newly added features and add your favourite events to your favourites and calendar. You can add the movies you want to watch within the Istanbul Film Festival to your calendar and make your own programme via the İKSV Mobil app. You can also access all information pertaining to the festival on İKSV Mobil app, downloadable on AppStore and Google Play.


Accreditations for the 38th Istanbul Film Festival

To apply for international media accreditation for the 38th Istanbul Film Festival, please visit and submit the online form no later than 22 March 2019.

For any questions, please contact the Istanbul Film Festival media relations department at

When and where festival tickets go on sale

Festival tickets will be available for purchase as of Saturday, 23 March at 10.30. The tickets can be purchased on Biletix sales channels and from the box offices at the Atlas and Rexx movie theatres, without any service charge.

Ticket Prices

Weekday daytime screenings (11.00, 13.30, 16.00) are only 10 TL; for students only 2 TL (limited to capacity.)

Weekday 19.00 screenings and weekends (11.00, 13.30, 16.00, 19.00) are 25 TL; for students and seniors (over 65) 16 TL.

All 21.30 screenings are 25 TL.

Tulip Card holders will, as always, benefit from the advance sales and special discounts up to 25% on the festival tickets. During the advance sale period, tickets can be purchased at the Atlas and Rexx movie theatres, as well as from the Tulip Card Communications Centre (+90 216 556 98 56), and on the Biletix website ( and Biletix sales points. Advance sales period for Tulip Card members: 19 March for Black and White Tulip Card members and 20-21-22 March for Red and Yellow Tulip Card members.

An essential guide for filmgoers during the festival, festival catalogue with film synopses, festival schedule, and all the details, will be on sale for 15 TL at Atlas, Beyoğlu, Rexx and Kadıköy movie theatres and at İKSV and Biletix sales points as of Monday, 15 March.

The festival catalogue will be also accessible via, İKSV Kitaplık app, and the Turkcell Dergilik.

In addition, İKSV, which cooperates with TEMA, will plant a sapling in the İKSV Forest in Çanakkale Gürece on behalf of each İKSV Tulip Card holders who prefers to receive the festival catalogue digitally.

Supporters of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival

The 38th Istanbul Film Festival is held with the support of more than 20 institutions. The festival is organised by the generous support of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Republic of Turkey General Directorate of Cinema. The Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, Beşiktaş Municipality, Beyoğlu Municipality and Kadıköy Municipality continue their publicity support for the festival.

Here are the theme sponsors:

  • Anadolu Efes National Competition and Cinema of Turkey
  • Yapı Kredi  “Cinemania”
  • Selpak “No More Flowers”
  • Nescafé Gold  “Young Masters”

The Istanbul Film Festival continues to reintroduce the distinguished works of the Turkish cinema on the silver screen in its “Turkish Classics Revisited” section, which was launched ten years ago under the sponsorship of the Zurich Sigorta. Technology Sponsor of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival is Dell Technologies.

The Istanbul Film Festival continues its collaboration with the Goethe-Institut Istanbul, German Films, and Kino 2017, as well as numerous cultural institutes and foreign missions, including Institut Français Istanbul, Unifrance, Korean Cultural Center, Dimitrie Cantemir Romanian Cultural Institute, Austrian Cultural Forum Istanbul, Danish Culture, Istanbul Hungarian Cultural Center, and diplomatic institutions–Embassy of Ireland in Ankara, Canadian Embassy, General Consulate of Sweden in Istanbul, General Consulate of the Czech Republic in Istanbul, General Consulate of Mexico in Istanbul.

The Leading Sponsor of all İKSV festivals is Eczacıbaşı Group, the Hotel Sponsor is The Marmara Collection. The Insurance Sponsor is Zurich Sigorta, the Official Carrier DHL Worldwide Express. The service sponsors are American Hospital, KOOP, Navitas, GFK, directComm and AGC Software.

Promotion campaign of the 38th Istanbul Film Festival is prepared by TBWA.

Comment on this Article:

Platinium Partnership



Premier Partnership Sponsors


Official Media Event Partner


Global travel media endorses the following travel Publication




%d bloggers like this:
%d bloggers like this: