Pop & Politics (2): Fighting injustice with film | Ümit Ünal

This week on Pop & Politics we are joined by Ümit Ünal, a screenwriter, director, and author who has been making celebrated films since the 1980s. In conversation with Kenan Behzat Sharpe, Ünal discusses the state of creative freedom in Turkey, the film industry, why Turkey has yet to have its “Parasite” moment, the LGBTQ+ community’s positive response to his films, why he prefers to write women characters, and his new life in Glasgow. Born in İzmir in 1965, in 1986 Ünal wrote his first screenplay, My Aunt, which was directed by Halit Refiğ. He has also written and directed many feature films, including 9, which was Turkey’s official entry for the 2003 Academy Awards for best foreign film, as well as Istanbul Tales, Ara, Shadowless, The Voice, and The Pomegranate. His 2017 film Serial Cook and 2019 film Love, Spells and All That have also won many international awards. As an author, Ünal has also published four books. Since 2020, he has lived in Scotland.

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