It’s been six years since our first interview…
When I think about what I’ve been through, I feel like I’ve gained 20 years of experience. human and
player I think I’ve changed a lot.
What has changed?
I understood more clearly what will never change in my life; family, women’s rights, career… I clung to these more tightly. The spine of my ethical values became thicker and stronger. And now instead of “Why is this happening to me”, I ask “Why is this happening to me”. I realized this when I broke my spine the previous summer.
How did you break your spine?
We got caught in a storm on the boat, the wave hit. I fell on my back. Fear swept through my body, I said, “Will I be able to walk again?” I remember picking up something pointed and dipping it all over me to see if I could feel it. The doctor said that my nerves weren’t damaged by two inches. Otherwise, I would not be able to walk again. This has taught me how finely there is life. For three months, I had to go to bed 16 hours a day.
It must be so hard…
“Well done” I said. Because I started to trust the flow of life. When you try to control everything, you try to swim in a wave, but if you let yourself go with the flow of the wave, you will see the opportunities more clearly.
Is it difficult to be one of the most popular actors in Turkey?
I don’t get out of bed in the morning saying, “How popular am I?” I always think about how to get better at acting and focus on the things in front of me.
You said “I don’t want to be young”. Aren’t you already young?
My goal is not to be young. Even if I’m young, I don’t know, I’m not very interested in it. What does jon mean anyway? I’m an actor.
Don’t you admit that he’s handsome?
There are many people who are handsomer than me. Besides, it’s my job and my concern is not to be really handsome.
Gentleman, sensitive and polite about women’s rights… You are like the golden child of the acting world…
I am definitely not the golden boy. I find it funny to show what should be as ingenuity. I grew up knowing that if there is inequality, I have to stand against it, not next to it. I’ve always believed that as you get older you should get smaller.
Are you flirtatious?
I don’t think I’m too filtatious. I guess I’m not… I’m not, I’m not. What is meant by this question Hakan (laughs)?
Does someone come into your life often?
You actually mean “You’re with another woman every night”, right?
You’re young, handsome, famous… How much do you use them?
None. My friends are making sentences that start with “I wish I were you”, but that’s not for me. Of course, flirting is a good thing when it comes to taste.
Who is the sexiest woman alive in the world?
My codes in sexy; the other person’s self-confidence, standing on his feet… I believe that the more peace you are with your inner world, the more it is reflected in your physique. There are many sexy women who enter these codes.
Do you believe in love?
Why did you do that?
I believe in love one hundred percent. But in a world that is changing so quickly, it’s hard. In my grandparents’ time, love was easier.
However, it’s like the opposite…
There was a time for love back then. Now the troubles are different. For example, I would like to look at the person I’m in love with and say, “Let’s just drop everything and get on a plane.”
Have you ever experienced such a love?
No, I did not. If I already find it…
Is there love right now?
Was the cup with the letter ‘D’ that you held in your hand during the live broadcast you participated in quarantine really Demet Özdemir’s?
No. I don’t know what ‘D’ is. It could be either Dilara or Didem, right (laughs)? Why is it immediately called ‘Demet’? Demet and I have mutual friends, she is a wonderful person, but there is no such thing.
You can’t watch yourself on the screen…
Yes, I don’t know why.
Haven’t you watched the show yet? How do you develop yourself?
I was watching a few scenes in the beginning, but our work pace does not allow much. Actually, we don’t even look at the monitor on set. I trust the director. And after a point, when you determine the main lines, the character you play becomes your best friend.
When you were an actor known for his drama roles, you got out of your comfort zone and started acting in romantic comedy with ‘Sen Çal Kapımı’… Moreover, this is a series that started in the summer. There are those who think that ‘summer serials’ are ‘soap bubbles’. Didn’t you hesitate?
First of all, I don’t like being cold, it’s not easy to work in winter under these conditions. I find this perception funny, there is no such thing anywhere in the world. Things like ‘Game of Thrones’ or ‘True Blood’ also started in the summer. It is also absurd to perceive that ‘who plays drama does not play comedy’. I don’t want to follow rules and stereotypes anymore.
Are you really funny?
People around me say I’m funny. Most of my friends were saying, “Son, stop doing stupid dramas or something, do some comedy.” And yes, okay, now I like to make fun of myself, I show my funny face.
Is it true that you really fell in love with Hande Erçel?
No, we’re both doing our job. Hande and I didn’t know each other before. When you start working with such popular actors you don’t know, you think, ‘What will I meet?’ But Hande surprised me a lot. She has a strange energy on set. We got a very good match. She cares a lot about work. Our team is also extraordinary, we are like in an entertainment area of 100-odd people.
You acted in the independent movie, ‘Magenta’. What character are you there?
A character who has to run his father’s factory while he wants to do photography… He is with the woman his family wants him to marry. Under the pressures of society, this man meets someone one day and realizes that he is spiritually lost.
In the advertisements of the sports brand (Under Armor) you are the face of, you explain that blood, sweat and tears should be shed while reaching the goal. How many of these were in your story?
I have a story of tears, sweat, and the occasional blood. My life in America was actually difficult before I came to Turkey.
What did you experience?
I have dreamed of acting since I was 13 years old. I’ve been a driver, a waitress, I’ve been the person standing at the door of the clubs. For a while, I was doing three jobs to pay my rent and raise money for acting classes.
Was your financial situation bad?
No. My father was at the top of a good oil company.
Why did you work so many jobs?
In college, I was successful in both marketing and acting. There is a beautiful light in marketing, but I said to my father, “I want to be an actor.” They didn’t like it. I decided to move from Texas to Los Angeles and crawl there. E, I did not find it right to take money from them while trying to do something they did not accept. I said, “I will clean the toilet at the gym at four in the morning, I will also be a driver, and I will not give up my struggle to act.” Three years passed like this. Then the circumstances of life brought me to Turkey, luck… With director Altan Dönmez and ‘Waiting for the Sun’, everything settled. “America is a racist country. But here, too, the class distinction bothered me a lot. We should not evaluate a person by his car or income. I am left in awe.”
You care so much about women’s rights. How did this sensitivity begin?
It’s been like this since I was a kid. For 1.5 years, I have been coaching important names on women’s rights in an organization called ‘Inspire Justice’ in America.
We see the news of violence against women very often. What is your opinion?
As I read and dig deeper on these issues, I see that there is a systematic problem. This is a system that the patriarchal society insists on and the worst thing is oppression… Men are exposed to this as much as women. When it grows and takes shape under this pressure, injuries occur. It’s like that all over the world. There are also certain codes. Even in movies, heroines are revealed with certain codes of patriarchal society. I am also against them.
What kind of codes?
For example, if the baby is born a boy, everything will be blue, and if a girl is born, it will be pink. What a stupid code! I love powder pink as the color. Will a color make you a man? Or does talking about these kinds of topics make me more feminine?
Do these perceptions change?
Everything can change. It is wrong to comply with the system by saying that it does not change.
Do you interfere with the scenarios of your works?
In any job, if I find anything sexist in the script, I say “I won’t”. That’s why I love my current job, there is a woman standing on her feet in our story.