Message of the Festival Director




There are 7 notes in music, 7 basic colors, 7 continents in the world, 7 days a week and cinema is the 7th art. The number of completions in all beliefs is "7". And we are more inclusive and stronger in our 7th year as a festival.

In these difficult years that the world and our country have gone through, we have managed to become the second-largest international film festival in Turkey. We achieved this success despite having one fortieth, even one sixtieth of the budgets major festivals receive in Turkey. But we never gave up, found new ways and used our imagination to solve the problems we faced. This festival refuses to lose itself in glory and values sincerity above everything else. Undoubtedly, the fact that we are a team coming from behind the camera, that we have to deal with distribution problems by ourselves and that this festival is held in Izmir has a great share in this. Within 7 years, we managed to attract the attention of not only Izmir and Turkey, but also Europe, South America and Middle East countries and to open a space for them at our festival. In the last four years that we were international, we've made nearly 150 world premieres in our festival; and this year, 31 of 77 films from 27 countries will have their world premiere and 37 films will have their Turkey premiere at our 7th edition.

Our effort to make IWFF known internationally will continue with our partnerships with other film festivals such as Porto Femme Film Festival (Portugal), Elles Tourent Film Festival (Belgium) and Films Femmes Méditerranée Film Festival (Marseilles).

Aysim Türkmen's "Creating Characters From Izmir Workshop", which has been an event organized since the very beginning of our festival. This year it'll be held as "Creating Character from Izmir Project Development Workshops" within the scope of the awards we received from the Izmir Kültür Fonu. We are happy to create new opportunities for new directors, women in the cinema field and fellow cinephiles by providing a series of workshops and masterclasses that not only contribute in quantity but also in quality. Although there are more than 5 cinema schools in Izmir, we accept students from everywhere to do internships from the first day of the festival, as the places where they can learn the job are very limited.

I'd like to express my thanks and gratitude to my dear festival team and family who have been with me since the beginning of this journey, Dilaver Bayındır, Sevinç Baloğlu, Sema Pekdaş, Banu Bozdemir, Aysim Türkmen and Dilek Çolak, to Izmir Metropolitan Municipality Culture and Art Department and their staff who have supported us for five years, to the EU Sivil Düşün Project who have supported us for three years, to our screening venues Institute Français İzmir and their staff, Izmir Chamber of Commerce and their staff, Türkan Saylan Kültür Merkezi and their staff, Konak Municipality, Goethe-Institut İzmir and their staff, İstinyePark Teras Renk Sineması and their staff , İZKF and their staff.

Endless thanks to Turkish Film Critics Association (SİYAD) , our jury members, our workshop instructors, Bortar employees and Hasan Küçükkurt, Serpil Usluel, Tayyar Fırat, Amaris Hotel, Kaya Prestige and their staff, Rawsome, American Foods, Caffe Nero, Red Bull, our main sponsors Megapol Group and Selim Gökdemir, TÜRK TUBORG INC. and Damla Birol, Elif Özaydın and Tuğçe Küçükmutlu.

With the great happiness of doing something sustainable in Izmir, to many more successes.