Directed by Azra Deniz Okyay



90 min


Turkey France Qatar


Arabic Turkish Arabic Turkish


In Istanbul, on the verge of a country-wide power surge, four characters come across in a neighborhood undergoing the process of gentrification for the “New Turkey”: a mother whose son is in prison, a young female dancer, a feminist artist, and a cunning middle man. Their stories intertwine during a drug deal, offering a roaring tale of the contemporary generation.

Festival Selections

Venice Film Festival - Grand Prize Critic's Week Thessaloniki International Film Festival - Human Values WIFT Casablanca Independent Film Festival - Best Directing Best Actress

International Releases

Switzerland - SISTER Italy, Turkey, UK, Scandinavia - MUBI Eastern & Central Europe - HBO Taiwan -ULIGHT

Press Reviews

“An impressive feature debut. From its first frames, Ghosts upends expectations” Screen “Turkish director Azra Deniz Okyay breaks out with an excellent debut film featuring a cross-cutting narrative, a deserving winner” Cineuropa



  • Settimana Internazionale della Critica | Grand Prize
  • International Film Festival Karlovy Vary |
  • Thessaloniki International Film Festival | Human Values WITF


  • Mostra Internacional de Cinema de Sao Paulo |
  • Warsaw International Film Festival | FIPRESCI

About the Director

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Azra Deniz Okyay

Born in Istanbul, Azra Deniz Okyay started photography at the age of 12, and became an assistant at 14 of the photographer Dora Gunel. After finishing highschool in Lycee Francais Pierre Loti of Istanbul, she moved to Paris to study Cinema at Sorbonne-Nouvelle University where she had her Bachelor’s and Master’s. She worked in Michel Gondry’s Partizan Production company. She returned to Turkey in 2010 and became the first female director at Depo, an advertising production company in Istanbul. She made various shorts and music videos. Her works on Video-Arts were selected in international exhibitions and galleries. Her debut GHOSTS (Hayaletler) World Premiered at the Venice Film Festival - Critics' Week where it won the Grand Prize, before the film raved outstanding reviews and awards in festivals (Antalya, Thessaloniki, Warsaw, Stockholm, Karlovy Vary)


Little Black Fishes (Short) (2013)

  • Barcelona International Film Festival - Excellence in Cinematography
  • International Crime and Punishment Film Festival - Best Film

Sulukule Mon Amour (Short) (2016)

Cast & Crew

Nalan Kuruçim, Dilayda Güneş, Beril Kayar, Emrah Özdemir
Azra Deniz OKYAY
Barış Özbiçer
Ayris Alptekin
Sound design & mix:
Théo Serror
Ekin Fil
Ceren Ertürk
Dilek Aydın
Production Company:
Heimatlos Films
Co-production Company:
MPM Film

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