A friendly chat with Ambassador Esener over some sweet and bitter Turkish coffee
On Tuesday afternoon I stole some time from the busy Turkish Ambassador to South Africa Mr Kaan Esener at his Pretoria based office. On arrival I was greeted by the Ambassadors friendly colleagues who couldn’t stop sharing jokes. Minutes later the tall bold figure of Mr Kaan Esener showed up and shook my small hand. Both the Ambassador and I walked into his neat office and then we were joined by a young Turkish lady by the name of Gokae Gul Yilmat. Before we started the interview the three of us had a conversation over some sweet and bitter soothing Turkish Coffee.
The reason for our visit was to get a thought or two regarding the Turkish Film Festival which kicks off tomorrow at Brooklyn Mall Cinema Nouveau.
Turkish Ambassador to South Africa Kaan Esener
Interviewer: Ashley Mokwena
Why bring the Turkish Film Festival to South Africa?
Ambassador Esener: “We as the Turkish embassy decided we going to share our culture and social experiences with South Africans, to obviously further strengthen our ties and to unite both countries.”
What are the expectations of such an event?
Ambassador Esener: “With the films we choose to show at the Festival, the aim is to portray the same social challenges Turks and South Africans face in modern times and there’s an expectation that the chosen films will grab some attention.”
What are the future prospects of the Turkish Film Festival in South Africa?
Ambassador Esener: “If there is interest shown by the South African film lover, we can build and make the event an annual thing with the vision of moving it to other South African cities.”
How broad is the Turkish Film industry?
Ambassador Esener: “Turkish film industry lies first in Europe and sixth in the world.” “The Turkish film industry over the past decade has shown great signs of growth and the growth has been helped by the style in which Turkish films are told and by how they are put together, I must say in terms of screenplay and technology used by the film makers, it’s safe to say we on point.”
Do you feel the Turkish film industry can produce delightful films to match the same standards as that of Bollywood, Nollywood or the Chinese film industry?
Ambassador Esener: “Yes, we have the all-round talent, but bear in mind technical we catching up and screenplay it’s an open competition.”
What should South African’s expect the Turkish Film Festival?
Ambassador Esener: “South Africans can expect a lot of humour, fun filled moments and a great taste of real life drama.”
Complete the sentence “A Turkish film is like…?
Ambassador Esener: “Turkish Coffee.”