Turkey's Merve Dizdar on May 27 won the Best Actress award at the 76th Cannes Film Festival for her role as a teacher in Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s latest “About Dry Grasses.”
Le Prix d’interprétation féminine revient à Merve DIZDAR dans KURU OTLAR USTUNE (LES HERBES SÈCHES) réalisé par Nuri Bilge CEYLAN— Festival de Cannes (@Festival_Cannes) May 27, 2023
The Award for Best Actress goes to Merve DIZDAR in KURU OTLAR USTUNE (ABOUT DRY GRASSES) by Nuri Bilge CEYLAN #Cannes2023 #Palmares #BestActress pic.twitter.com/tWaPmFBLW3
In her acceptance speech at the prestigious festival, 36-year-old Dizdar dedicated the award to “all my sisters who… take action to strengthen the struggle of women, who risk everything and never give up hope no matter what, and all fighting spirits waiting to experience the good days they deserve in Turkey.”
“My character Nuray is a woman who struggles for her beliefs and existence and has to pay a price for this cause. I would like to work for a long time to get to know and understand her, but unfortunately, being a woman in the geography I live requires knowing the feelings of Nuray by heart since the day I was born,” she said.
« J’aimerais dédier ce prix à toutes les femmes qui mènent une lutte pour surmonter les difficultés pour exister dans ce monde.»— France 2 (@France2tv) May 27, 2023
Le prix d'interprétation féminine revient à Merve Dizdar pour son rôle dans Les Herbes sèches de Nuri Bilge Ceylan.#Cannes2023 pic.twitter.com/uTB4Lvbc31
After hearing that she won the best actress award, Dizdar seemed surprised. She became the first Turkish actress winning the award.
Ceylan’s 197 minute-long “About Dry Grasses” focuses on a young art teacher Samet hoping to be appointed to Istanbul after his mandatory duty at a small village. Samet’s life changes after he meets another teacher Nuray, played by Merve Dizdar.
Ceylan said that he wanted the film to convey the "gradual change" in the personal beliefs of civil servants and teachers who were sent to compulsory duty in Eastern Anatolia at an early age.
Ceylan previously won the Palme d'Or for “Winter Sleep” back in 2014.