Çağla Zencirci, Guillaume Giovanetti

France, Germany, Luxembourg, Turkey , 2019 / 2018 min / Turkish OV with French subt. / Drama

25-year-old Sibel lives with her father and sister in a secluded village in the mountains of Turkey’s Black Sea region. Sibel is mute but communicates by using the ancestral whistling language of the area. Rejected by her fellow villagers, she relentlessly hunts down a wolf that is said to be prowling the neighbouring forest, sparking-off fears and fantasies among the village women. There she crosses paths with a fugitive. Injured, threatening and vulnerable, he is the first person to take a fresh look at her.

Sibel is a powerful film drenched in a mysterious – and to some extent even mystical – atmosphere.” Muriel del Don, Cineuropa, 3/08/2018

Tickets available via Kinepolis' and Ciné Utopia's webshop!

Wed 13/02 18:30 Ciné Utopia TR OV with FR subt. Avant-première

"The whistling in this film really deserves some special mention - it is absolutely enthralling, and it is absolutely real. Sönmez whistles all her own dialogue, having trained for months with a coach from the village who was also on set during filming to ensure whistles were accurate and sensible. Rather than being an entirely original language, it’s apparently a translation of actual Turkish into syllabic notes that emulate real words and inflections, meaning that entire conversations can take place over great distance - or face to furious face in the case of Sibel; the mute who very much isn’t, provided she’s communicating with her family or villagers. (…) Shot on location with local actors, but helmed by an accomplished actress who has clear command - if not outright mastery - of their unique language, the result is a film not only superbly acted by Sönmez, but immersed in a fantastical realm that feels - and is - surprisingly real. I dare say, I found Sibel pitch perfect.” Stuart Muller, ScreenAnarchy, 25/09/2018

  • FIPRESCI Prize, Locarno Film Festival, 2018 (Italy)
  • Young Jury Prize, Locarno Film Festival, 2018 (Italy)
  • Prize of the Ecumenical Jury, Locarno Film Festival, 2018 (Italy)
  • Golden Boll for Best Film in the National Competition focused on Turkish Cinema, Adana International Film Festival, 2018 (Turkey)
  • Best Actress Damla Sönmez, Adana International Film Festival, 2018 (Turkey)
  • Hamburg Producers Award for European Cinema co-productions, Filmfest Hamburg, 2018 (Germany)
  • Best Actress – Damla Sönmez, Antalya International Film Festival, 2018 (Turkey)
  • Best Original Screenplay – Çağla Zencirci, Ramata Sy and Guillaume Giovanetti, Antalya International Film Festival, 2018 (Turkey)
  • Audience Award, Cinémed Montpellier, 2018 (France)
  • Critics Award, Cinémed Montpellier, 2018 (France)
  • Best Performance of the Year Award – Damla Sönmez, 20th International Eskişehir Film Festival, 2018 (Turkey)
  • Universities Jury Award, MedFilm Festival in Rome, 2018 (Italy)
Cast & Credits
Damla Sönmez, Emin Gürsoy, Erkan Kolçak Köstendil, Elit İşcan, Meral Çetinkaya
Çağla Zencirci, Ramata Sy, Guillaume Giovanetti
Eric Devin
Tim Stephan, Stephan Konken
Bassel Hallak & pro Pi
Les Films du Tambour, Riva Filmproduktion, Bidibul Productions, Mars Production, Reborn Production
Tarantula Distribution

French-Turkish couple Çağla Zencirci and Guillaume Giovanetti have been directing together since 2004, producing several shorts (selected in Berlin, Locarno, and Clermont-Ferrand Festivals), two feature documentaries, Retrouver Bam (2005) and Camera Obscura (2012), and two fiction features, Noor (2012) and Ningen (2013). Sibel (2018), their third feature, was selected in Competition at Locarno International Film Festival.

  • 2018 – Sibel
  • 2013 – Ningen
  • 2012 – Noor
  • 2012 – Camera Obscura (documentary)
  • 2009 – Six (short)
  • 2008 – Ata (Short)
  • 2007 – Shanty Garden Town (short)
  • 2006 – Carnegami (short)
  • 2005 – Retrouver Bam (documentary)
  • 2004 – Une route de la soie (documentary short)