Netflix cancels production of Turkish series, ‘If Only’, due to pressure to remove Gay Character

Netflix cancels production of Turkish series, ‘If Only’, due to pressure to remove Gay Character

Netflix has canceled filming on its latest Turkish original, If Only, amid pressure from local authorities to remove a gay character from the series.

The eight-part relationship drama was announced in March and was set to be made by Turkish production outfit Ay Yapim, with screen star Özge Özpirinçci leading the cast. But Netflix has scrapped the plans after producers were refused a filming license because of the existence of a gay character.

Per a translation in the Financial Times, If Only’s creator Ece Yörenç told Turkish film website Altyazi Fasikul: “Due to a gay character, permission to film the series was not granted and this is very frightening for the future.”

Responding to a request for comment from the FT, a spokesman for Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s ruling Justice and Development Party acknowledged that concerns were raised about If Only. And rather than cave to creative changes, Netflix decided to abandon the project.

A Netflix spokesman did not comment on the matter directly, but said: “Netflix remains deeply committed to our Turkish members and the creative community in Turkey. We are proud of the incredible talent we work with. We currently have several Turkish originals in production — with more to come — and look forward to sharing these stories with our members all around the world.”

Netflix’s first Turkish original, The Protector, premiered in 2018 and the streamer doubled down on local shows last year, with commissions including The Gift. If Only was due to focus on an unhappily married woman who is transported back in time to the moment her husband proposed. Özpirinçci posted a picture from the set over the weekend.

View this post on Instagram

❤️????????

A post shared by Ozge Ozpirincci (@ozpirincci) on

Following the cancellation, showrunner Yörenç retweeted a quote from Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, who reportedly told Turkish newspaper Hürriyet in 2018 that he did not have concerns about censorship in the country. “We’re in Saudi Arabia. We’re in Pakistan. If there are no problems there, will we have problems in Turkey? I can’t imagine that,” he reportedly said.

Previous THE UGLY SIDE OF LOVE
Next NIGHT ON BABATUNDE STREET

About author

You might also like

The Happenings 15 Comments

Iconic Musical Genius Prince Passes On At 57

The 57-year-old singer was found unresponsive Thursday morning in an elevator at Paisley Park Studios in Chanhassen, Minnesota, Carver County Sheriff Jim Olson said. Paramedics tried to perform CPR but

The Happenings 2 Comments

“The Show Humanizes Stories In A Way People Need To See.” Grey’s Anatomy’s Ellen Pompeo Talks About The Military Gay Kiss In The Show

It was a kiss welcomed everywhere by the gay fans of Grey’s Anatomy, between two soldiers played by Benny Ciaramello (Friday Night Lights‘ Santiago) and MTV Road Rules‘ alum David

The Happenings 24 Comments

Study Finds That Homophobes Are Likely To Be Closet Gays

LOL. Okay, this will please a bunch of KDians. A series of psychology studies have recently found that homophobic attitudes are more likely to found in individuals who harbour unacknowledged

1 Comment

  1. Mandy
    July 22, 11:42 Reply

    LMAO!!! The fact that Netflix is so unapologetic with its determination to represent LGBT people in their creativity is the most gratifying thing. where would we be without the visibility Netflix is giving us?

Leave a Reply