How, from prison, Yilmaz Güney wrote and oversaw the shooting of his film YOL. How he arranged his escape to Switzerland and was crowned with the Palme d’Or in Cannes 1982.
In this detailed and richly illustrated book, Edi Hubschmid tells a story that is exciting as it is daring. It is also a drama. For years, the Turkish government had condemned the Kurdish Turk Yilmaz Güney, the popular actor, screenwriter and director, for being a Marxist. In 1974, after a shooting incident in a café, Güney was arrested. In 1976, he was sentenced to 19 years in prison. Güney’s film YOL was a critique of repressive Turkey of the day – a society enslaved by the yoke of honor and revenge. And today still, YOL remains a relevant critique of the Turkish state, exacerbated by the president’s dictorial policies and the increasingly brutal repression of the Kurds. In a book as gripping as a thriller, Edi Hubschmid describes how events unfolded with the production of YOL, Güney’s successful escape from prison, his exile in Switzerland, and the completion of the film in France in secret locations. Turkey had requested Interpol issue an international arrest warrant, and Güney remained in France, where he was well hidden by the Swiss. When YOL premiered in May at the Cannes Festival, the film received the Palme d’Or jointly with Missing by Costa-Gavras.