Bülent Öztürk’s new documentary, Waiting, has won the Award for Best Documentary at the TRT Documentary Days in Istanbul (3-7 May). The doc, about the impact of the October 2011 earthquake in east Turkey, was nominated for the national competition of the festival.
A jury of Turkish directors, film critics and academics gave Waiting the prestigious award, worth 30,000 Turkish Lira (€12,800). It’s not a first for Öztürk in Istanbul – in 2010 he won second prize at the TRT fest with his documentary Talking Stones of Bakacik.
The director expressed his gratitude upon receiving the good news: ‘I realise that it would not have been possible to make Waiting without the support and faith of a number of different people. First and foremost, I want to thank them.’ Öztürk is currently writing the screenplay for his debut feature, Missing Dog, for which he recently received support from the Flanders Audiovisual Fund.
Bülent Öztürk graduated from the RITS Film Academy last year and immediately began work on Beklemek, his first low-budget project. Immediately after the 2011 earthquake, he travelled to eastern Turkey to capture the tremor’s after-effects on film. The documentary offers an intimate look into the lives of three people during the quake’s aftermath.