Boston Turkish Film and Music Festival9th ANNUAL BOSTON TURKISH FILM FESTIVAL SM
March 25 - May 30, 2010

Pandora's Box

Yesim Ustaoglu is the recipient of the 2010 Boston Turkish Film Festival Excellence
in Turkish Cinema Award in 2010.


Pandora'nin Kutusu

New England Premiere


-- Watch Trailer -- #trailer

Thursday, March 25, 2010    7:00 p.m.
Remis Auditorium, Museum of Fine Arts
465 Huntington Avenue, Boston

Boston Turkish Film Festival Award for Excellence in Turkish Cinema Ceremony preceding the screening

Directed by Yesim Ustaoglu
Written by Yesim Ustaoglu, Sema Kaygusuz
Cast: Tsilla Chelton, Derya Alabora, Övül Avkıran, Onur Ünsal
2008 / 112 min. / In Turkish with English subtitles


Two sisters and a brother live in the center of Istanbul today. They are in their thirties and forties, and lead very different lives, self centered on their upper – middle class preoccupations. One day, a phone call brings them together on a voyage through Turkey’s suburbs and villages to the small town in the Black Sea mountains where they were born. Their aged mother, Nusret, has disappeared. As the siblings start reminiscing about her, the tensions between them quickly become apparent; like a Pandora’s box which is spilled open, all the unresolved disputes are scattered around. Old wounds are opened up again.


  • MedFilm Festival, Italy (2009): Eurimages Italy Award
  • The Castellinaria International Film Festival, Switzerland (2009): The 3rd Castles
  • Cinemanila International Film Festival, The Phillipines (2009): Vic Silayan Award-Best Actress (Tsilla Chelton)
  • San Sebastian International Film Festival, Spain (2008): Best Film "Golden Shell", Best Actress "Silver Shell" (Tsilla Chelton)
  • Fajr International Film Festival, Iran (2009): Christal Simorgh - Special Jury Prize, Best Performances (Tsilla Chelton, Derya Alabora, Övül Avkiran)
  • Amiens International Film Festival, France (2008): Best Performance (Tsilla Chelton)
  • Valenciennes International Film Festival, France (2009): Best Actress (Tsilla Chelton)
  • Istanbul Film Festival, Turkey (2009): Best Actress (Derya Alabora)
  • Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival, Turkey (2008): Best Supporting Actress (Övül Avkiran)
  • Thessaloniki International Film Festival, Greece (2006): Crossroad Best European Project


Yesim UstaogluAfter making several award-winning shorts, Yesim Ustaoglu made her feature film debut with 1994's The Trace (Iz). The film was presented at numerous international festivals, including Moscow and Gotenburg.

Yesim Ustaoglu received international recognition for her 1999 film, Journey to the Sun (Gunese Yolculuk). In competition at the Berlin Film Festival, Journey to the Sun received the Blue Angel Award (Best European Film) and the Peace Prize. The moving story of a courageous friendship undaunted by political cruelty, Journey to the Sun swept the Istanbul Film Festival by winning Best Film, Best Director, the Fipresci Prize and the Audience Award.

Her third feature film, Waiting for the Clouds (Bulutlari Beklerken), the story of a woman forced to live for 50 years with the haunting secrets of a hidden identity, was awarded NHK Sundance-International Filmmaker's Award (screened at the 5th Boston Turkish Film Festival, 2005). Film traveled many festivals and established a strong reputation for the director.

Ustaoglu's fourth film, Pandora's Box (Pandora'nin Kutusu) tells the story of an old woman who suffers from Alzheimer's disease. The film won The Best Film and The Best Actress Awards in San Sebastian Film Festival. Having participated many international festivals and winning many awards, the film was also theatrically released in many countries.

Yesim Ustaoglu is the recipient of the Boston Turkish Film Festival Award for Excellence inTurkish Cinema for 2010.


  • Pandora'nin Kutusu / Pandora's Box (2008)
  • Bulutlari Beklerken / Waiting for the Clouds (2004)
  • Sirtlarindaki Hayat / Life on their Shoulders (2004, doc.)
  • Gunese Yolculuk / Journey to the Sun (1999)
  • Iz / The Trace (1994)
  • Otel / Hotel (1992, short)
  • Duet (1990, short)
  • Magnafantagna (1987, short)
  • Bir Ani Yakalamak / To Catch a Moment (1984, short)




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