The film is set in the oldest zoo in Turkey, where privatisation is underway, but an endangered Anatolian Leopard poses an obstacle. After the zookeeper finds the leopard dead, he decides to keep it a secret and falsely reports that it has escaped from its cage. This marks the first feature of director/writer Emre Kayiş, whom I have previously collaborated with on the short film, The Translator. Anatolian Leopard has been recognised with awards, including Best Cinematography at the Ankara International Film Festival 2021 and a nomination for Best Cinematography at the SIYAD Awards 2022.
The Toronto International Film Festival, the International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI) have named their award winners for work screened at TIFF 2021.
“We are thrilled to announce that Anatolian Leopard has received the 2021 FIPRESCI Jury Award,” said Diana Sanchez, senior director, film, TIFF. “Every year we are amazed at the creativity and audaciousness of the filmmakers in our line-up. Anatolian Leopard, directed by Emre Kayiş is no exception.”
The 2021 FIPRESCI jury released a statement that called its winner “a perfectly controlled comedy of manners, Anatolian Leopard takes the temperature of a country torn between the old ways and modernity – not to say between honor and corruption – while offering up a melancholy portrait of a man at odds with his surroundings. Emre Kayiş shows great formal accomplishment in this measured and thoughtful film, which stood out from the competition for its singular tone and worldview.”