Turkish producers work on Irish ‘Great Famine’
From: Hurriyet Daily News
ANKARA – Anatolia News Agency
Turkish producers of a film dramatizing the help offered by Ottoman sultan Abdulmecid to Ireland after the Great Famine of 1845 have given a proposal to Hollywood actors Leonardo DiCaprio and Collin Farrell for the project.
The film “Famine” is planned to be made in both the Irish port town of Drogheda and in Turkey, and talks have been held with Irish director Mark Mahon. The film will tell the story of the famine through a love story between Turkish sailor Fatih and Irish local Mary.
The screenwriter and project director of “Famine,” Ömer Sarıkaya, said that Mahon had shown real interest in the film’s story. “Mahon said that the project was very interesting and that he was very excited about it. He thought it was more interesting than the story of ‘Titanic.’”
He said that he had gone to Ireland to conduct research on the film and talk to Mahon, and had invited him to Turkey. Sarıkaya said that the film was a historical one, but also had themes of love, cheating, jealousy and murder.
He also said that Mahon had been in contact with DiCaprio and Farrell for the film and that they had responded positively to the project. “We are thinking of DiCaprio for the character of Fatih and Farrell for the character Patrik. They are positive about the project but only Mahon has been in contact so far.”
Sarıkaya said that half of the artists in the film would be Turks and half would be Irish, adding. “We want Kenan İmirzalioğlu to play the role of Sultan Abdulmecid. This film will be a Turkish-Irish production. We want Irish actress Saoirse Ronan to play the role of Mary, the big love interest of sailor Fatih.”
The shooting of the film is scheduled to begin in August.
The Great Famine was a period of mass starvation, disease and emigration between 1845 and 1852. It is also known as the Irish Potato Famine.