Three titles from OGM Pictures, all of them inspired by the works of Turkish psychiatrist Gülseren Budayıcıoğlu, have taken Turkish TV by storm and all of them lead Eccho Rights’ catalogue for the event.
Eccho Rights’ partnership with OGM Pictures has led to the distributor to represent some of the most powerful and successful Turkish dramas of the moment, including many of the producer’s adaptions of the work of Turkish psychiatrist Gülseren Budayıcıoğlu, including one of the freshest titles on the market, Chrysalis.
“Chrysalis is a really incredible new series that we are so excited about, and that has been greatly anticipated, not only in Turkey but also around the world,” says Barbora Suster, Head of Latin America & Iberia for Eccho Rights.
According to the executive, the story presents at first “the impression of a Cinderella story”, where “a beautiful girl meets her Prince Charming and they look set to have a gorgeous romance”. “But there is something very dark underneath the surface and we will soon learn that not everything is as it seems”, Suster explains.
Nalan, the lead character played by Burcu Biricik, will have to really fight to stay positive and come out of the darkness. The cast also includes Feyyaz Şerifoğlu as romantic interest Sedat.
“We actually think it is perfectly timed and reflective of the state of the world now and we hope that people will find some hope in her story as we still see how we are working our way out of this pandemic,” she adds. “We know already that the producers OGM Pictures have an amazing track record, currently making three of the top drama series that air each week in Turkey including The Red Room and My Home My Destiny both of which we represent, so we expect nothing more than another hit of course.”
The Red Room has been another successful partnership with OGM, with the title already sold to territories like Sweden. “The Red Room has been number one in Turkey each week since its launch in September, and in the most competitive time slot each week this is a hugely impressive result,” says Suster. “It is a psychological drama about people going through difficult times and seeking therapy but it is very emotional and again very much suited to this time when viewers are also working on their own thoughts and feelings, stuck at home during the pandemic.”
Another powerful drama by OGM is My Home, My Destiny, a title that launched in Turkey last Christmas, on TV8. “My Home, My Destiny has not only been a big hit in Turkey the past year but is now starting to see big results in terms of international sales”, points out Suster. “We have completed deals all around the world, including in Spain, India, Israel, almost all of Eastern Europe and we are also placing it with one of the biggest broadcasters in LatAm which we are very excited to announce soon.”
Chrysalis, The Red Room and My Home, My Destiny are adaptions of books written by the Turkish psychiatrist Gülseren Budayıcıoğlu. Dr. Budayıcıoğlu (Ankara, 1947) has been a Turkish celebrity for many years, taking into consideration her role as a TV presenter at TRT starting in 1965, a role that earned her the alias “Miss TRT” while she was still in college. She alternated between both professions, and eventually added writer, publishing her first book in 2004. Most of her novels -like The Girl in the Glass (2019) or Back to Life (2011)- narrate cases she witnessed during her career.
Dr. Budayıcıoğlu works have become a focus of OGM Productions’ dramas during recent years, becoming the inspiration of the mentioned titles represented by Eccho Rights and also others, like The Innocents and the upcoming If the King Loses.
Turkish dramas’ success in LatAm is well documented, and yet it continues to evolve, with Eccho finding new windows for its content, like pay TV and SVOD. “This window, that was quite unexplored for Turkish content untill quite recently, is now becoming very important,” says the executive. “There are new players that are considering telenovelas for their services and that was something unthinkable only one year ago.”
“I believe the digital platforms are more important every day and it’s the part of the industry that is constantly growing and developing,” Suster explains. “We are working with several players on worldwide or pan-regional level, and these deals are becoming more substantial in the results of the company, therefore our sales strategy adapted to this new trend. Nevertheless, I don’t believe that the digital will overtake the linear, or at least not just yet.”
In Europe, meanwhile, Spain continues to grow as a destination for Turkish dramas: “It looks like Turkish drama is definitely there to stay,” affirms Suster. “We are now seeing the move, not just from niche thematic channels to main broadcasters, but even to primetime slots on these major channels, which is a huge sign that the genre is working and that Spain has taken it to heart.”
“We also had Sisterhood air in prime time on Mediaset’s Canale 5 in Italy last summer, so we see a great growth potential there. We believe it is only a matter of time until we see Turkish series on air in France as well, and we have been programming a Turkish slot for Sweden’s SVT for many years now, so the spread is very apparent throughout the whole of Western Europe,” she adds.