Director and scenarist (B. 2 September1916, Istanbul –D. 19 November 2011). He studied in French Sainte Jeanne D’Arc School and Galatasaray High School. He graduated from the Department of Finance in Istanbul College of Economy and Commerce. He worked as a financial consultant and production manager of Sema Film for a while. In 1947 he completed Seyfi Havaeri’s incomplete movie titled “Damga” and therefore started his directing career. Upon the insisting and encouragement of producer Hürrem Erman he directed the movie called “Vurun Kahpeye” of which he also contributed the scenario as his first independent movie direction. Later he directed successful movies in a wide spectrum, which consisted of detective, comedy, horror and documentary movies.
In the world, which was depressed because of the 2nd World War, the cinematography in Turkey was still under dominion of Muhsin Ertuğrul’s thespian approach. The audience was rather confronted with American and European movies than rare productions of this approach; especially Egyptian arabesque movies, which were dubbed in Turkish, received a high number of audience. An authentic cinematographic narration vein, which was particular to Turkey, was not available yet. Moreover, directors who knew the finesse of cinematographic language and who narrated their stories in an effective and comfortable way did not exist. Ömer Lütfi Akad was one of the people who filled that gap. Cinema historian Nejat Özön evaluated his “Vesikalı Yarim” and “Kanun Namına” as starting point of cinematographic language in Turkish cinema.
“Gelin” (1973), “Düğün” (1974), “Diyet” (1975) belong to Akad’s magnum opus called “Göç Üçlemesi”. All these three movies contain stories of people who give effort to adapt themselves to their families, migration and new social structures. In “Gelin” he tells the story of a family who migrated to Istanbul from a Central Anatolian small city, their struggle to survive and their falling apart; in “Düğün” the story of a family who migrated from a Southeastern city to a large city, their being wounded despite of their resistance to death; and finally in “Diyet”, tragedy of workers who try to hang onto life in a large city. Television dramas he shot by the end of 1970 attracted a large audience. “Topuz”, “Ferman”, “Pembe İncili Kaftan”, “Diyet”, “Bir Ceza Avukatının Anıları” (four episodes) and “Dör tMevsim İstanbul” are some of them. His cinematography besides was an important source for “National Cinema” discussions.
The pure Turkish in scenarios of Akad, his great experience which is rooted in adopting the culture of people and his sharp observation skill which focuses on the body language of Turkish people make his works local and universal at a sufficient level. The skilled director who says that “he is in a research of a cinematographic language in each of his movies” says the following things on his movie called “Yalnızlar Rıhtımı” he shot in 1959: “In this movie, I drew decorations of all plans screen by screen, placed the things and cameras and realized a ‘research of scene’ , a shape research in the line of ‘spatial geometry’ basing on the scenario I prepared and applied these until the end... Some effects in this movie are still present in our cinema.”
Lütfi Akad became famous with the movie “Vurun Kahpeye” he shot in 1948. Although he directed numerous movies for the market, starting from 1960s and especially after 1970s he gave priority to movies, which focus on social reality. “Hudutların Kanunu” (1966), “Kızılırmak Karakoyun” (1967), “Ana” (1967), “Gelin” (1973), “Düğün” (1974), “Diyet”(1975) are of such movies.
Ömer Lütfü Akad also has a book titled “Işıkla Karanlık Arasında” (2004) in memories-essay genre. He was awarded with 1967 Antalya Altın Portakal Film Festival “2nd Best Dram Movie Prize”, 1968 Antalya Altın Portakal Film Festival “2nd Best Movie Prize”, 1974 Antalya Altın Portakal Film Festival “Best Director Prize”, Ministry of Culture 1988 “Grand Prix of Culture and Arts”, 13th Ankara Film Festival 2001 Aziz Nesin Labor Prize.
REFERENCE: (Başlıcaları): Muzaffer A.Esen / L. Akad’ın Tuttuğu Kuş (Pazar Postası, Sayı: 9, 1957), Türkiye 1923-1973 Ansiklopedisi (c.1, 1974), Alim Şerif Onaran / Lütfi Ömer Akad'ın Sineması (1977), Lütfi Ö. Akad (nehir söyleşi, 1990), Atilla Dorsay / Yüz Yüze (1986), Burçak Evren / Ustasız Bir Usta (Altyazı dergisi, Sayı: 4, 2002), Ayla Kanbur / Sadeliğin Derinliğinde Bir Usta, Lütfi Akad (2005), Kurtuluş Kayalı / Lütfi Akad Sineması Yararlanılmamış Engin Bir Kaynaktır (Bilim ve Sanat Dergisi, Sayı: 96, 2006), Hakan Erkılıç / Akad’ın Göç Üçlemesinde Eşya-İnsan İlişkileri Bağlamında Kimlik: Ne O Ne Öteki (25. Kare dergisi, Sayı:16), Film Arası / Özel Sayı (Sayı: 14-15, Eylül-Ekim 2011), Ömer Lütfi Akad Vefat Etti (Hürriyet, 19.11.2011), İhsan Işık / Ünlü Sanatçılar (Türkiye Ünlüler Ansiklopedisi, c. 5, 2013) - Encyclopedia of Turkey’s Famous People (2013).