Life Guide For The Dead 42nd Istanbul Film Festival (3)

Life Guide for the Dead | 42nd Istanbul Film Festival | Ölüler İçin Yaşam Kılavuzu

Baris Fert’s debut feature film “A Guide to Living for the Dead” starring Deniz Isin, Haki Bicici, and Caner Cindoruk had its world premiere at the national competition section of the 42nd Istanbul Film Festival. After making several short films, director Baris Fert pushes the boundaries of genre cinema and offers a new discovery opportunity for his audience with “A Guide to Living for the Dead,” which he completed without any public support.

Life Guide for the Dead 42nd Istanbul Film Festival (1)

The movie tells the story of Deniz (Deniz Işın), who lost the ability to empathize and his feelings years ago, and turned into a criminal machine, pursuing a mysterious software believed to be in Istanbul and finding himself in a chaotic adventure that lasts for twenty-four hours. The film, which competed for the Golden Tulip as well as the Seyfi Teoman First Film Award at the 42nd Istanbul Film Festival’s national competition, met with the audience for the first time with its premiere at Atlas 1948 on Friday, April 14th. Following the screening, the film’s director Barış Fert and the film crew, including producers Ipek Erden and Emre Pekçakır who also served as the cinematographer, actors Caner Cindoruk, Haki Biçici, Muttalip Müjdeci, Ece Bozkaya, and editor Bünyamin Bayansal, answered questions from the audience moderated by film critic Muammer Brav. During the Q&A, Barış Fert explained that the reason why the film is set in 1992 is that it refers to a true story and actually took place after Turkey’s transition to free-market economic policies in 1992.

Life Guide for the Dead 42nd Istanbul Film Festival (2)

When asked about the journey of making the film, producer İpek Erden replied, “Barış is a director who likes to push the boundaries of both cinema production practice and himself. Together, we tried a difficult thing. Making a film is a difficult task that requires effort and resources in itself. Making an independent film requires even more sacrifice. Especially when you try to complete projects where boundaries are pushed, you are expected to give up on some support at the beginning of the road. That’s why I say congratulations to the whole team on stage, being here is a very nice feeling.”

When asked about how the actors prepared for their roles, Deniz Işın, who played the lead character Deniz, replied, “I enjoy making facial expressions so much in the comedy projects I have been in that the most challenging point for me when working on this character was to complete the scene without any expressions. Rather than being one-sided between masculinity and femininity, I preferred to stay on the border between the two.”

Life Guide for the Dead 42nd Istanbul Film Festival (1)

Ece Bozkaya stated that she worked on the relationship between the character Julia and Deniz, and found it important for the relationship to come to light and for the unstable energy to flow.

Caner Cindoruk, who is both the lead actor and casting director of the film, said that the practice gained from working with Haki Biçici for years paid off and that he loved the film very much.

Haki Biçici, who had the last word, said, “It is very advantageous to know almost all of the actor’s team and to continue the play with them. We just concentrated on doing our job, thanks to this.”

The film was selected from among many productions that applied in 2022 to the Frontières platform, which focuses on financing and co-producing genre films, jointly organized by the Marché du Film of the Cannes Film Festival’s market section and the Fantasia International Film Festival, and made a presentation to international industry professionals.

Barış Fert completed his master’s degree at the University of the Arts London/London College of Communication. Since 2013, he has continued to work in many areas of the film industry and is expanding his mission of storytelling by trying new ways. Issues such as migration, the concept of space, geographical/political borders, and the relationship between humans and space are the sources of inspiration for his films. Barış Fert also directs commercials and music videos. In 2018, he was selected by Béla Tarr for the “Béla Tarr Film Management Workshop” held within the scope of the Antalya Film Forum. His first feature-length film that he wrote and directed, “Guide to Life for the Dead,” was selected for the Frontieres Platform of the Cannes Film Festival – Marche du Film in 2022, in the post-production phase.

Film Credits:

Director: Barış Fert

Producer: İpek Erden, Emre Pekçakır

Production Company: Vayka Film, SoberWorks

Screenwriter: Barış Fert

Director of Photography: Emre Pekçakır

Editor: Bünyamin Bayansal

Production Designer: Ertuğrul Aysel

Cast: Deniz Işın, Haki Biçici, Ece Bozkaya, Muttalip Müjdeci, Caner Cindoruk

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