The Asia Pacific Screen Academy in association with the Turkish Government’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade will present for the first time in Brisbane, Turkish Waves, a Turkish cultural program in conjunction with the 2nd Brisbane Asia Pacific Film Festival (BAPFF) and the 9th Asia Pacific Screen Awards (APSA).

Curated and programmed by Turkish producer and APSA Academy member Zeynep Özbatur Atakan (Producer of the 2014 Cannes Palme d’Or winner Winter Sleep) the Turkish screen culture partnership with APSA and BAPFF will include a screening program of some of the most significant Turkish films of the last five decades and a specially-produced limited edition cinema programme booklet.

Celebrating the rich and diverse arts and culture of Turkey, Turkish Waves will also include musical performances, festival panel discussions and will culminate in a reception hosted for the first time in Brisbane, similar to the Turkish events held annually at the A-list film festivals Cannes, Berlin and Venice.

A delegation of Turkish filmmakers will be immersed in the 4-day APSA international networking events for filmmakers, and participate in screenings and panel discussions at BAPFF.

General Manager of Turkish Cinema of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Erkin Yilmaz expressed his gratification with these words: “The Asia Pacific Screen Awards is highly regarded and well known to the Turkish Cinema industry which has taken significant part since the Awards were first introduced in 2007.  We are thrilled to be bringing into light our long lasting friendship through this presentation of Turkish cinema at Brisbane Asia Pacific Film Festival and APSA as one of our contributions to the 100th anniversary of the ANZAC landings at Gallipoli.”

Turkish Waves curator Zeynep Özbatur Atakan said “The 100th Anniversary of the Gallipoli Commemoration has the utmost importance for Turkey, Australia and New Zealand, and has been the inspiration for highly artistic events including ‘The Gallipoli Symphony’. Turkish films have always been well-represented across many categories at APSA and we are proud to present this selection of films from classics to modern for the cinema lovers of Brisbane.”

Lord Mayor of Brisbane, Graham Quirk welcomed the creative partnership “Australia has a long and enduring connection to the people and culture of Turkey, as witnessed in the many events commemorated throughout this year around the anniversary of Gallipoli. By holding this event in Brisbane, we have a remarkable opportunity to celebrate the culture of these important regional neighbours and further forge our bonds of friendship.”

Chairman of the Asia Pacific Screen Awards and its Academy, Michael Hawkins said “The Asia Pacific Screen Academy is thrilled to work together with the Turkish Government and APSA Academy member Zeynep Özbatur Atakan in presenting this country focus in the Brisbane Asia Pacific Film Festival, and welcoming the involvement of the Turkish film industry to the many important networking and cultural events in the Asia Pacific Screen Awards program.”

Turkey’s representation and involvement at APSA has grown since APSA’s inception in 2007. In eight years, over 45 Turkish films have competed and countless film practitioners, artists and cultural representatives have played their part in APSA’s development. Turkish filmmakers have sat on the International Jury three times enjoyed 21 APSA nominations and 11 APSA wins.

Zeynep Özbatur Atakan was a member of the APSA International Jury in 2012, following being awarded the Jury Grand Prize in 2011 for Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s Once Upon A Time In Anatolia. The film was also awarded Achievement in Directing and Achievement in Cinematography. Films produced by Zeyno Film have been awarded a total five APSAs from nine nominations for Three Monkeys, Once Upon A Time In Anatolia and 2014’s Winter Sleep. In 2012, Zeynep was awarded an MPA APSA Academy Film Fund development prize, offered exclusively to APSA Academy members via the Motion Picture Association (MPA).

Brisbane Asia Pacific Film Festival screens November 19-29 encompassing the Asia Pacific Screen Awards Ceremony on November 26. The full program of films and cultural activities will be announced closer to BAPFF.



Zeynep Özbatur Atakan has been working in the industry as an independent producer and partner in various production companies since 1987 and established Zeyno Film in 2007 with the aim to produce and market films of international standards in Turkey and worldwide.  Atakan’s close collaborative and creative working relationship with Turkish auteur Nuri Bilge Ceylan has produced four multi-award-winning films – ClimatesThree MonkeysOnce Upon A Time In Anatolia and Winter Sleep.

Atakan’s first APSA nominations were in 2008, when Three Monkeys (Uc Maymun) was nominated for Best Feature Film and Achievement in Cinematography (Gokhan Tiryaki) , and was awarded the APSA Achievement in Directing for Nuri Bilge Ceylan.  Atakan’s next collaboration with Ceylan and Tiryaki , Once Upon a Time in Anatolia (Bir Zamanlar Anadolu’da, 2011) was presented with the prestigious 2011 APSA Jury Grand Prize and the award for both directing and cinematography. The film was further nominated for Best Feature Film and Best Screenplay. In 2014 Winter Sleep (KişUykusu ) was internationally lauded at its world premiere at Cannes winning the Palme d’Or, and was APSA-nominated for Best Feature Film, and won the APSA Achievement in Directing award for Nuri Bilge Ceylan.

In 2010, the company launched the production laboratory Yapımlab, as a platform for providing education and consultancy to young film practitioners who aim to become professionals. Zeyno Film continues to produce internationally successful films in Turkey, as well as introducing new producers into the film industry. The company’s vision for the future is to adapt to the changes and transformations that the film industry is undergoing, and distinguish itself as a leader in developing creative approaches for alternative models in film production. Ms Özbatur Atakan is the Vice-President of the European Women’s Audiovisual Network.


The Awards, now with a permanent home in Brisbane; Australia’s New World City, are presented by Treasury Hotel & Casino supported by Brisbane City Council and managed by economic development board Brisbane Marketing. APSA has the privilege of a unique collaboration with Paris-based UNESCO and FIAPF-International Federation of Film Producers Associations, and recognises and promotes cinematic excellence and cultural diversity of the world’s fastest growing film region: comprising 70 countries and areas, 4.5 billion people, and is responsible for half of the world’s film output.

All nominees, International Nominations Council and APSA Jury members are inducted into the APSA Academy presided over by President, Australian screen Legend Dr Jack Thompson. The Academy boasts over 750 of the region’s leading filmmakers and provides exclusive networking, development and funding opportunities available to Academy members through the APSA Academy NETPAC Development Prize, the MPA APSA Academy Film Fund, APSA Academy Children’s Film Fund and Academy mentoring opportunities for the next generation of Asia Pacific filmmakers through the Asia Pacific Screen Lab. The APSA’s Academy partner, the European Film Academy shares the common interest of presenting pan-International Awards that promote and award excellence in cinema.

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Celebrate cinema at its best in Brisbane this November when the Brisbane Asia Pacific Film Festival (BAPFF), proudly presented by Treasury Casino and Hotel, treats film fans to some of the most outstanding cinema from our region from Thursday 19 to Sunday 29 November. Now in its second year, BAPFF boasts more than 75 award-winning features, documentaries and shorts from here and abroad, in a program packed with gala screenings, special guest appearances, and retrospectives. BAPFF will also offer Brisbane audiences a rare chance to see a selection of the nominated films from the 9th APSA, the region’s highest accolade in film, held at Brisbane City Hall on Thursday 26 November.

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The Asia Pacific Screen Academy expresses its respect for and acknowledgement of the South East Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. We pay our respects to the Traditional Owners of country, including the custodial communities on whose land works are created and celebrated by the Asia Pacific Screen Awards. We acknowledge the continuing connection to land, waters and communities. We also pay our respects to Elders, past and emerging. We recognise the integral role Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and First Nations peoples continue to play in storytelling and celebration spaces.

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