By Yasemin Kalyoncuoglu
ANKARA (AA) – Tens of thousands of village children, many of them new to movies on the big screen, recently enjoyed watching an open-air film as part of a festival in eastern and southeastern Turkey.
In the festival, 30,000 children had open-air cinema experience with their families in the Ardahan, Kars, Igdir, Van and Hakkari provinces, in Turkey’s east and southeast on Sept. 16-27.
The 7th Cinematic (Sinemasal) Film Festival was co-organized by the Culture and Tourism Ministry Cinema Directorate and the Cinematic Culture and Arts Association.
The festival, which aims to introduce movies to socio-culturally disadvantaged children, from 2013 to 2018 also showed films in Turkey’s Black Sea, Mediterranean, central Anatolia, Marmara and Aegean regions.
"We went from village to village to bring children together to watch movies with the support of the ministry and local authorities," festival organizer Enes Kaya told Anadolu Agency.
Kaya said they handed out commemorative movie tickets, popcorn, and juice for free.
This was probably the children’s first experience of open-air cinema, he said.
– '3.5M children in 7 festivals'
Kaya stressed that they not only offer open-air movies but also painting, puppetry workshops, and many more activities.
"We would like to continue the festivals," he added.
"Next year, the festival will go to the western Black Sea region. In seven festivals we reached 3.5 million kids. Seeing their joy makes us so happy."
*Writing by Davut Demircan