Turkey, Pakistan Enjoy Burgeoning Cooperation in TV, Film Sectors

 Turkey, Pakistan Enjoy Burgeoning Cooperation in TV, Film Sectors
22 June 2020

The popularity of Turkish TV serials continues to grow – and not just in Turkey. Recently, Diriliş Ertuğrul (‘Resurrection: Ertuğrul’), a TV series based on the real-life story of 13th-century Muslim Turkish leader Ertuğrul Gazi, has taken Pakistan by storm, attracting more than 450 million viewers since its first airing in May. Due to the show’s runaway success, Pakistani media firms are now hoping to secure the rights to more Turkish TV productions.

ISTANBUL (TR) - Turkish television and film productions have continued to make waves internationally, especially in Pakistan. This has been especially the case with Resurrection: Ertuğrul, which some have described as “Turkey’s Game of Thrones.”

Sophisto Global Medya, a subsidiary of Imtiaz Holding, the largest Istanbul based Pakistani company, which first had the idea of dubbing the series into Urdu (the national language of Pakistan), and Turkey’s Hasan Güngör Talent Management, which provided much of the show’s cast, have signed a cooperation agreement today. According to both sides, this cooperation is aimed at promoting greater cultural exchange between Turkey and Pakistan through the mediums of film, television and music.

Building bridges, exporting talent

“Art is the most effective way to share common cultural values and heritage,” Omar Imtiaz, CEO of the Istanbul-based Imtiaz Holding said. “Through this cooperation, we hope to build new ties, not only between Pakistani and Turkish producers and actors, but also between commercial brands from both countries.” 

“Turkey has been very successful in harnessing the power of art to build bridges: politically, economically and in the tourism sector,” Imtiaz said. “We want to tap the potential we’ve seen in Pakistan, especially after the success of Resurrection: Ertuğrul. By promoting ties between Turkey and Pakistan, we hope to also promote the productions and talent of both countries.”

“In this regard, we are doing our best to bring popular Pakistani television serials to Turkey, and vice versa,” he added. 

Broadcast three times a week

Resurrection Ertuğrul, which tells the dramatic story of the early days of the Ottoman Empire, has had a tremendous impact, both in Turkey and among foreign audiences. In May, the series began airing on state-run Pakistan Television (PTV) three times a week, including one new weekly episode.

Professionally dubbed into Urdu, the show racked up a whopping 450 million Pakistani viewers within its first month on air. This means that, in terms of viewership, Resurrection Ertuğrul has achieved greater popularity in Pakistan than it has in its native Turkey. 

Winning hearts, joining forces

“Turkish performers and television serials have won the hearts of the Pakistani people,” Hasan Güngör, whose casting agency provided much of the show’s cast, said. “Resurrection Ertuğrul has now been seen by nearly half a billion people in Pakistan. Our two nations share a great history; it’s only natural that they join forces.”

“We have incredible talent in Turkey, which we would like to showcase to the rest of the world,” Güngör added. “Through this new cooperation, we hope to strengthen the film and television sectors in both Turkey and Pakistan so they get the global attention they deserve.”

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