Metin Akdülger, with whom we were with during the shooting of About a Boy, also brought along a lot of sentences that start with “fortunately”. Metin, avoiding categorizing himself with roles and missions, and never putting himself in a routine, is someone who connects to life with stories that he narrates. This is exactly why we are desperately asking all the questions that boggle our minds, to get to know him better.
I never had a proper connection with school. It’s better to say I never identified with it. Whereas all the children around me were excited to go to school, I was never mentally there; this was how I felt starting first grade. Jobs, occupations, disciplines… I always had trouble with these concepts, including my high school years. What I studied there or the identity I was given never satisfied me. I always saw school as a duty. First grade was over, on to the second one; second was over, now on to the third one… That’s why the concept of occupation and roles that people take on never meant anything to me.
If we’re talking about the relationship between conservatory education and acting… There are people who go through the school system and move on to conservatory, improving a lot in that education system. My experience is a bit different.
As a child, I loved painting. I used to get back for the rest ofthe day. My mother saw my interest and sent me to a painting course. As soon as I had a test that required me to draw something a certain way, I began to distance myself from painting, which I loved so much, skipping classes. Because I didn’t like that situation, painting sort of disappeared from my life. I’m not saying this is right or wrong, I’m just saying it doesn’t work for me. That’s why even though I love acting C and telling stories, I never had the courage to get into a con- servative education system.
Being “a decent man…”
I studied politics with the instincts of adapting to the social order, and to be a decent man. Being in university urges feelings like that. I was going in and out of classes, studying political science, which I was very interested in, but it was not something that I could sustain my life with or support my existence. I was there solely to attend university. On the other hand, I was happy because I was by myself for the first time. You get stronger when you’re responsible for yourself…
The question of “What am I doing?”…
I knew that I would graduate from my department, but I wouldn’t become a politician. I didn’t want to anyways. Later on, I figured that I was spending all day watching movies in my room. In that period I started to write, realizing that I wanted to tell stories.
During that period I was looking for a way to relate to people. While I was asking myself “What should I do?” I decided to enter the American football team. That was a concrete step forward in my life. I said to myself “I want to be busy with so mething, and I pick this.” and I did it. American football requires wisdom, practicality, and a team effort. If you don’t work with your teammate once you’re on the field, you won’t succeed. This thought me the notion of working as a collective.
“I am aware that it’s a difficult process, but I am on the way of making my dreams come true.”
To have an occupation…
The word “occupation” sounds very sterile to me, I don’t like it. You do something in life, you create a business for yourself. You become happy, and you feel alive. However once you give it a material meaning and call it your “job,” it becomes a burden for you.
What I do is the act of telling stories, I wouldn’t call it acting. I write, I paint, I try to make music… These are the results of me living the way I want to in any given moment. I could have studied politics, dermatology or economics, but I’d still be doing the same thing. I’m trying to do whatever it is that supports my existence for that moment in my life. Of course, the existence of the material world is unavoidable, therefore I have to do whatever it is that gets me to pay my bills and survive.
Making dreams come true…
I’m keeping two plays that I’ve written on the side, ready to go. I am trying to bring them to life. However with the occupation I’m in right now, the lack of time doesn’t permit me the energy to do it… That’s why I’m collecting strength, experience and companions along the way so that I can perform my plays in the future. I am in the process of actualizing them. I am aware that it’s a difficult process, but I am on the way of making my dreams come true.
“Bank of Broken Hearts”
It could sound like a cliché but Onur Ünlü is my favorite director in Turkey. He has been a name that I’ve always wanted to work with. When they told me that Onur Ünlü wanted to meet me for his film, I remember saying “Okay, where? I’m going right away.” and l got up to get ready… It was a very exciting meeting for me, which is a process I don’t enjoy much usually.
Bank of Broken Hearts has become a legend in the film industry because it’s Onur Ünlü’s first movie he has written, which hasn’t gotten made. I knew about the film for a long time… I am so happy to be a part of it. I’ve never done anything that I’ve been so excited about in my career of acting. It’s an Istanbul story that gets its conflict from Romeo and Juliet. It’s a film that deals with an existential issue. If you’re interested in Onur Ünlü ‘s cinema, I say go to it, I will as well.
Festivals & Films
I find it weird that any art form gets awarded. It makes me say “according to whom, to what”. For example, say they are going to choose the best painting of 2015. Look at the mission, only five paintings are chosen, and other’s are not. According to whom are they throwing art to a corner? Or the Oscar Ceremony… So many nominees, just a few winners… “According to whom, to what?”
However I do like festivals. There is a film selection that is offered to you on a specific day. I like the people who join the event and I like the discussions they make about it. The part that scares me is the award part. I prefer festivals without awards. To give awards to art creates a bizarre competition and I think competition limits and pollutes. There must be more collective works. Giving awards destroys this possibi- lity.
The last book I read is “Fur-Coated Madonna”. I think it’s been over-discussed, but it’s a book that everybody should read. Another book that I think is related to artists is The Power of Now from Eckhart Tolle. I finished the first chapter and spent some time thinking about it. Then I start reading it again from the beginning, and move on to the second chapter. Then I do it all over again and include the third chapter, and so forth… I’m still reading it, I haven’t finished it yet. This book showed me many things that I think form the basis of many beliefs. Even though I don’t like this genre of personal development, this is a book that I suggest to my acquaintan- ces and lend it to them.
Kool & The Gang – Celebration…It plays at the end of the first play I wrote, thats how much I like it. Pink Floyd – Atom Heart Mother…I always listen to this song. Hardal – Babalar Küçük Oğullarına Söylesin Diye… It’s by a Turkish band from ‘74.
ACDC – Back in Black…And any song from Eric Satin will work.
Photography: Melike & Felipe Barranco