Born in Ankara in 1978, Deniz Gamze Ergüven had a very cosmopolitan upbringing, between France, Turkey and the United States. A compulsive cinephile, she studied directing at La Fémis in Paris, after a BA in literature and an MA in African History at Johannesburg. Her graduation film, Bir Damla Su (Une goutte d’eau), screened at the Cannes Festival Cinéfondation and won a Leopards of Tomorrow award at the Locarno Festival. Opening with a shot of a veiled woman blowing a bubble with chewing gum, the 19-minute short tells the story of a young Turkish woman (played by Deniz herself) rebelling against the patriarchal attitudes and authoritarianism of the men in her community. After graduating from La Fémis, Denis Gamze Ergüven developed a debut feature set in South Central, Los Angeles, during the 1992 riots. Titled Kings, the project was selected by Emergence, the Cinéfondation Workshop and Sundance Screenwriters Lab. it was set to one side in favor of Mustang, co-written with Alice Winocour in the summer of 2012. The story of an emancipation, Mustang is a powerful, female take on contemporary Turkey. Deniz Gamze Ergüven shot it around Inebolu in northern Turkey, 600 kilometers from Istanbul. Kings will be premiering at Toronto International Film Festival in 2017.
Subscribe to our newsletter by entering your email.