Netflix has found a way of getting around some of the censorship it is encountering with its productions in Turkey. The streaming platform has announced that an adapted version of the series If Only, created by Turkish screenwriter Ece Yörenç, will be made in Spain. The decision was taken nine months after the Turkish government refused the series a filming license after discovering that one of the lead characters was gay. Rather than cut the character out, Netflix has handed the project to screenwriter Irma Correa under the title Si lo hubiera sabido (or, If I had Known) with Yörenç acting as consultant.
Starring HBO series 30 coins actress Megan Montaner, If I Had Known will tell the story of Emma, who is entering her thirties with the feeling that life has become dull after 10 years of marriage. A supernatural twist allows her to inhabit her younger body and, ironically, rewrite the script.
Referring to the change of location for the production, Yörenç told Variety magazine that “Turkey’s Ministry of Culture has the power to cancel a show depending on the image it gives of the country. Although it hadn’t used this power before, it applied it to my series though it didn’t give any explicit reason. But we know that it’s because the series has a gay character. They hoped we’d change the screenplay, adapting to the moral norms they expected. But I, along with Netflix, didn’t agree to making any change to the original screenplay and we finally decided to cancel the series. But now I really want to focus on the project, which is very exciting. I want to forget the past.”
All I can say is that we will have diversity in all its senses, and a strong Turkish flavor
Spanish screenwriter Irma Correa
Yörenç has said that several countries showed an interest in taking on the project, and that in the end Spain was chosen because, apart from the fact that Netflix Spain showed the most interest, Correa had already worked with the adaptation of another one of Yörenç’s series, Fatmagül, which became Alba in Spain and was also produced by Boomerang.
Joining the conversation on the recent adaptation, Correa told Variety: “All I can say is that we will have diversity in all its senses, and a strong Turkish flavor.”
A year back, Netflix had problems in Turkey with its teen series Love 101, also due to the potential appearance of a homosexual character. Rumors began to circulate on social networks that one of the characters would come out as gay as the plot developed. The rumor triggered an outcry and Netflix had to release a statement denying the storyline. Despite these clashes with the authorities, Netflix has just opened a production headquarters in Turkey, as it did in Spain in 2019, and has a dozen projects in the pipeline.
Meanwhile, Netflix Spain has revealed it will be making two new series besides If I Had Known: the action-packed Baruca, created by Victor Siera and Xosé Morais and starring Alberto Ammann, and the drama Intimidad, created by Verónica Fernández and Laura Sarmiento.
English version by Heather Galloway.
Nadine Lott told ex-partner who later killed her not to ‘threaten’ her, court hears
Nadine Lott told her former partner not to “threaten” her two weeks before he killed her, the Central Criminal Court has heard.
The jury in the trial of Daniel Murtagh was given transcripts on Tuesday of WhatsApp messages between the accused and his ex-girlfriend in the days and weeks leading up to her death.
In them, the accused asks her if she is “seeing someone from Dublin”. In reply, Ms Lott tells him she is not seeing anyone. Mr Murtagh asks her if there was a “Dublin lad” in her “place” and she tells him to “leave it out”.
She tells him that “nothing is ever going to happen between us again, I want to make that clear.”
In another text from December 5th the accused said: “Nadine I worry about ye, not in love, just don’t slip”.
She replied: “Don’t threaten me either”.
Evidence has previously been given that Mr Murtagh told a motorist that he had “killed my wife because she was with my friend”, just hours after he assaulted her.
John Begley testified last week that he saw a car in a ditch as he was travelling over Bookies Bridge in Laragh on the morning of December 14th and then came across the accused man standing at the side of the road.
“Daniel said to me ‘you don’t know what I’ve done”. I said what did you do. He said ‘I killed my wife’. I didn’t think anything of it. He said it a second time and said he hoped she was not dead. He said ‘she was with my friend’,” said Mr Begley.
Mr Murtagh (34), of Melrose Grove, Bawnogue, Clondalkin, Dublin 22 has pleaded not guilty to murder but guilty to the manslaughter of his 30-year-old ex-partner Ms Lott at her apartment in St Mary’s Court, Arklow, Co Wicklow on December 17th, 2019.
The jury has heard that Ms Lott suffered “severe blunt force trauma” and stab injuries at the hands of her former partner “in a sustained and violent attack” in her Arklow home.
They have heard evidence that the injuries to Ms Lott were so serious that she never regained consciousness and died three days later in St Vincent’s Hospital in Dublin.
An intensive care nurse at the hospital has told the jury that Ms Lott was “completely unrecognisable” and that she had never seen anybody so badly injured. A paramedic who attended to Ms Lott at her home told the jury that the call will “haunt” him for the rest of his career and was one of the most “horrendous scenes” he had ever walked into. The garda who telephoned ambulance control informed them that Ms Lott had been “beaten to a pulp”.
The trial continues before Mr Justice Michael MacGrath and a jury of seven men and five women.
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