Here’s what’s really upsetting, in it’s on small way, about the news out of Turkey: they are really really really welcoming to Indian films. In a way that I found really surprising when I started researching this post. There were websites and articles, all about how happy they are to have India film in their country, how grateful they are to be part of these films, how proud they are of this connection. On the other hand, when Dhoom 3 was filming in my town, it was reported as “hey, isn’t this kooky?”
1. I feel fairly comfortable saying Turkey has never looked better, whether in an American, Indian, or Turkish production, than it did in Ek Tha Tiger.
2. Guru ended up kind of slamming Turkey a little, since our hero rejects it and insists on returning to India. Although, on the other hand, Turkey welcomed his entrepreneurial spirit in a way that India had not up to that time.
3. I didn’t even know until writing this that Race 2 was in Turkey! And I actually enjoyed that movie! That’s how unassuming Turkey is, it’s not an “in your face, appreciate us!” kind of location like London, it can kind of slip into the background and just be a beautiful place.
4. According to this article, the connection between Indian film and Turkey goes all the way back to the 50s. When Awara came out in Turkey, it was such a huge hit, Indian women wearing saris were allowed free entry!
5. According to the same article, years later Indian film repaid Turkey’s generosity. When Salman was in town shooting Ek Tha Tiger, he used to hang out at a local cafe. He loved the food and the people, but he noticed the decor was a little shabby. And the music system was shot. So he started bringing in his own designers and paying them and buying new furniture and speakers and everything else. By the time he left town, the cafe had been transformed and the owners renamed it “Cafe Salman Khan” in gratitude.
6. And finally, there’s the indirect connection, which is my favorite, the many many many fanvid makers from Turkey, who delight in showing how their favorite Turkish songs match with the Indian films we all love.