The Turkish distributor welcomed buyers and journalists from all over the world in a special online edition of the event, to present four new dramas from Ay Yapim, MF Yapim, and Medyapim.
Yesterday executives from MADD Entertainment, Ay Yapim, MF Yapim, and Medyapim presented four of Turkey’s hottest new series to the world market at the second-ever MaddNext, a special online event for broadcasters, journalists and other media professionals to keep up with the latest trends in Turkish drama.
The executives were joined by leading actors from Medyapim’s A Woman Scorned, Ay Yapim’s The Agency, Love Is In The Air from MF Yapim, and Abandoned from Medyapim and MF Yapim together. The online panel provided hundreds of participants from around the world a rare insight into Turkish drama today.
MaddNext was led by MADD Entertainment Managing Director Ateş İnce, who anchored the broadcast as panelists joined in virtually from each of the series’ four sets, beginning with A Woman Scorned, the highly-anticipated Medyapim adaptation of award-winning British drama Dr. Foster.
The series revolves around a woman who catches her husband in an affair and goes to extraordinary lengths to exact revenge. This popular new series was introduced by Medyapim President Fatih Aksoy, who explained that he chose this project because he likes “to focus on essential things — like being a mother [as in Mother] or being a single woman [Woman]. Now, with A Woman Scorned, we have a chance to examine marriage.”
Aksoy was joined by on-screen couple Cansu Dere (Ezel, Mother, Persona) and Caner Cindoruk (Lady’s Farm, Woman). When asked what it was like to be the most hated man in Turkey, Cindoruk replied, “I’ve never had reactions like this to one of my roles. I’ve received so many angry messages over social media, you wouldn’t believe it!”
Aksoy pointed out that this is Medyapim’s second project with each of his lead actors. “Thank God we have a really great actress [Cansu Dere],” since so much rides on her shoulders. For her part, Dere described her character as “very cold-blooded.” As a doctor, she knows how to control her emotions and not thrash out. “She will do everything you want her to do [to get revenge],” Dere explained, “but she will wait until the proper time comes.”
The second set visit was with The Agency from Ay Yapim. Director Ali Bilgin introduced this series about a top talent agency serving Turkey’s biggest stars. Each episode of The Agency features cameos from real-life celebrity actors like Tuba Buyukustun (Brave & Beautiful), who supplement an all-star ensemble cast of agents, rising stars, and wannabe celebrities in the dog-eat-dog of Turkish drama.
Joining Mr. Bilgin were two of The Agency’s series regulars — Bariş Falay (Ezel, Medcezir, Broken Pieces) and Ahsen Eroğlu (Kuzgun) — who play an estranged father and daughter who end up working at the same agency. “In this world, I’m the shark,” said Falay. In Falay’s view, the evolving relationship between his character and Eroğlu’s humanizes the series. “The father-daughter conflict is very common in Mediterranean culture.” Eroğlu concurred, pointing out that her character “is a self-confident girl. She has dreams, and she refuses to let them go.”
MaddNext then took us to the set of Medyapim’s Abandoned, which was introduced by MADD Entertainment Head of Sales Özlem Özsümbül. The series features a band of orphans led by the precocious Mavi, played by international child star Beren Gökyıldız (My Little Girl, Mother). Abandoned by their parents, the orphans come together to make their own family under the watchful eye of the orphanage’s tough but caring director, portrayed by Turkish icon Erdal Beşikçioğlu (Behzat Ç.).
Asked to explain the series’ appeal to the world market, Özsümbül said, “Buyers want the best content. Beren’s last series, My Little Girl, is a proven success around the world, and Abandoned will be no different.”
The final set visit was from Love Is In The Air, the ratings phenomenon that premiered on Fox this summer. MF Yapim’s hit romantic comedy was introduced by the producer, Asena Bülbüloğlu, who explained what makes her series stand out from other Turkish rom-coms. “We set out to design a show with a deep storyline… We stayed away from rom-com stereotypes and made a romantic dramedy instead.”
Ms. Bülbüloğlu was joined by series leads Kerem Bursin (The Heart of the City, Matter of Respect) and Hande Erçel (Sunshine Girls, Hayat), who at this point must be considered one of the world’s most popular on screen couples. Hande has over 17 million Instagram followers, a number that keeps growing since Love Is In The Air hit the air. “I’m shocked.” said Hande, “My social media is expanding every day since this project. Every Thursday morning, I read all the fan comments from around the world and get even more motivated.”
With its star power, industry leaders, and timeliness, MaddNext has established itself as the premiere online event for Turkish drama. MADD Entertainment Managing Director Ateş İnce promised to keep the biannual forum going, adding, “We also look forward to seeing all of you again in-person at the physical markets when they come back.”
MaddNext was presented in partnership with NATPE Virtual as part of its NATPE V-Front series.