Grazie alla condivisione del progetto sui social media, sono entrato in contatto con persone fantastiche. Una giornalista che scrive per Ileri Haber, Füsun Canbolat, ha voluto intervistarmi. La ripropongo, tradotta in Inglese, perché descrive bene i miei progetti futuri, relativi alle mie attività e alla realizzazione del documentario su Bedrettin Cömert.
Could you please tell about yourself and how did the idea of making a documentary about your father came up?
I am 41 years old now, I have a family and my 8 years old son taught me so much about what my father meant to me. I don’t remember much about him. I was 5 when he died and the trauma suppressed my memories and never let them to surface. So I always felt like I never had a dad. But having a son made me realize that even if I do not remember him, I surely had a relationship with my father. During all those years, the story of my father was difficult to deal with. So me and my family never talked about it. When my mother died in 2002, I realized that I no longer had a witness to ask about my dad.
I always have been a creative soul, but maybe never really realized it. So I never made creativity as my main job. But in the last two years I approached to filmmaking, doing some musical videos, web series, short films and promos. I consider myself as an indie filmmaker, as all my resources are self-funded. So, step by step, I bought my first camera, then all the tools needed to shoot videos by myself. I learned a lot on shooting and editing and I have now the skills to express myself and tell stories through film-making.
The main idea of making a documentary on my father came up last year, on June. I came to know Turkish people (many married to Italians) living here, in Rome. They all knew the story of Bedrettin Cömert, to my surprise. I really didn’t know that he had an effect on so many people, even today. So they talked to me, told me their stories and I started thinking of a way to get to know my father better, as well as his story and the story of my family.
I was now thirsty. But did not know how to collect information. So I began to ask people who knew him for interviews, stories, memories. The first person was Yüksel Ersoy, an uncle for me, and a very close friend of my father and my family. As he comes to Italy very often, I asked him to talk about this. And that was the first step of my bigger project.
Do you have other projects coming up after the documentary? I have seen a few of your works on youtube, besides them, do you have other documentary or movie projects coming up?
The main project I have now is the documentary on my father. It’s my main goal for the next months. It will be challenging and hard to face, because of the pain to deal with and the language problem, now that I don’t speak Turkish anymore. It was really challenging to find information on my father, as they are all in Turkish language.
But I love film making and telling stories, so I’m always free to help friends in their videos or just do it for my pleasure. I’m interested in collaborating on any kind of project. With a Belgium friend of mine, we’d like to create an international network of filmmakers and editors. The goal is to make quality projects, all over the nations, like documentaries or just telling “simple people” stories. That would be awesome.
I’m planning to make a short film based on a theater piece I was involved in, some years ago. It’s about the situation in the late 70’s in Argentina, when the military government used to “make people disappear”, as they were considered as anti-government activists. The exact term for them was “desaparecidos”. I had a part in the piece as a torturer who is giving his reasons and telling what was “his job”. And that’s what I want to show in the short film, with the addition of a character who is not in the theatrical piece. She’s a journalist interviewing him, in jail. This is the month of the human rights and I hope to finish the short film soon.
But I’m really concentrating on my father’s documentary right now. After I finished the documentary on my father I’d like to make a short film or a theater play of the story of my father. Not a documentary but a real story. It will talk about him but about terrorism too.
I would like to ask, about the past also, after your father’s lost, your mother’s decision to leave the country, what was the main reason? Were you under threat, or your mum felt under threat, was there a specific pressure from the government in the office then?
In 1978, after my father died, we had to stay in Ankara as my mother was shot too. She survived but she had to stay in the hospital. I did not knew what happened. No one never told me my father was dead. They told me that he was out for work for some time. But I never saw him coming back. I really don’t know the moment I realized he would never come back. So this changed me totally, I became very shy, introvert.
We stayed one year in Ankara and then my mother decided to leave and go as far away as she could. Maybe the only thing that I remember about that period is that we used to go to school with a police officer, every day. I know that mother surely was under threat. So we left everything and went to Strasbourg, France. I never heard, during the years, of any kind of pressure at that time. The only pressure for my mother was to go as far as she could, leave the past and try to bring up her sons in safety.
I find it very important that the new generations could learn more about Bedrettin Comert and his legacy. When do you plan to finalize the documentary? How is your plan? Do you have any attempts for screening it in Turkey?
First of all I would like to explain that this documentary is about me and my dad. It is not “only” the story of a great man. But in my journey to knowing my father, I will try to story tell and let the new generations know who he was. His “legacy” is what he left us as a father, as a writer, as an enthusiastic man, as a teacher, and so on.
I don’t have a screenplay or a storyboard of my documentary, but the documentary will be created on the way, with the interviews, and all the information I get, it will emerge by itself, spontaneously. And as the documentary takes its form, I’ll also have the chance to get to know my father better, this is my goal. I do it first for myself. And this is the only way to do things in a better way.
I’m planning to finalize it in this year. I made a teaser with the material I had for now and then realized that I could not make it on my own. So I planned to share it on a dedicated Facebook page and a website. And what I can tell is that in only two days of sharing, I came in touch with so many people that have so many info and will to help me.
I realized I couldn’t afford it only with my own money, in order to have a final good result. So I put up a Crowdfunding to collect support from all over the world. This fund raising will help me begin the project concretely and give me a good starting point.
My goal is to finish the documentary and then try to spread it in every way that I can and I would really love to screen it in Turkey. But it will depend on many factors that are not under my control.
I’d really love people reading this interview to just go and see my facebook page and the crowdfunding page. For me, it is very important in this phase of the project, to raise some funds. It will give me the possibility to start it as best I can. Crowdfunding is the ideal way but many people are scared. Anyone can donate, from 10 euros on, to contribute. Every donator will have a reward from me, depending on the amount of the contribution. If the budget isn’t reached at the end of the crowdfunding, the project will not be funded. The final date is 17th april 2015.