From Cosmopolitan Turkey, September 2019 Edition
They are two young and talented people who proved themselves on the screen with their strong personalities and compassionate behavior. We took Hercai’s Reyyan and Miran -Ebru Sahin and Akin Akinozu- whose altruism takes the word “relationship” to another level, on a journey between reality and dreams.
Interview: Irem OrhanPhotos: Semih KanmaFashion Editor: Dilara İpek Şatır
Translation: Sena Ikizoglu
With its heartwarming story, the highly anticipated second season of ATV’s series Hercai, is a candidate to have a hypnotic impact on people again this year. The new episodes are about to begin. We wanted to host the leading characters who, with the purest kind of love, have made the viewing audience travel between reality and dreams. For one day, we took them from Mardin to Istanbul. First we dreamed, then we put Reyyan and Miran inside this dream. With no boundaries to the dreams, we kept dreaming: What if these two were living in Istanbul cheerfully, in a glamorous atmosphere? The couple of the year, behind a shop window where it is lighted up with spotlights, under the influence of a magical life…
Hercai’s second season is about to begin. What did this series bring into your lives?
Ebru: Hercai is one of the most beautiful chances I’ve had in my life. Since the aspiration of acting started to flow in my blood I’ve been dreaming of a character who could affect me deeply. Reyyan brought me that woman, she became a character who shaped me and whom I shaped.
Akin: I can say that before Hercai I was a crawling baby and now with Hercai I’ve started to walk on my feet.
What is the favorite trait of the character you play, what did you learn from them?
Akin: Miran’s most powerful trait is that he has a strong will to arrive at his destination. But, from Miran, I also learned that even a steel-like will can be defeated in the face of love.
Ebru: I love that Reyyan doesn’t abandon her naive side even though bad things have happened to her; that she always chases after things according to her feelings with her heart full of love.
You are an amazing couple on the screen. To what do you think you owe that?
Ebru: When the director says “action” on the set, I stop being Ebru and step into Reyyan’s world. We isolate us from our own personalities; I think the fact we are portraying the roles in which we believe… that persuasiveness is also felt by the audience.
Akin : To respect, love, compliance, indulgence…
What do you do while you are preparing for the character you will play?
Akin: I approach the script like an investigator, I ask as many questions as much as possible. And the character starts to develop while I’m seeking the answers. The more experienced you become, the more relevant the questions become. You learn to ask better questions and you start to make more creative decisions about that character according to those questions. After getting acquainted with my instrument, I’ve discovered that listening to music works on me to understand and reflect the emotions of a character.
Ebru: My biggest obsessions are details. I struggle a lot to get any information I can while I’m preparing for a character. Meditation is certainly a method I use to try and establish empathy with the character. I reached out to many people while I was preparing for Reyyan. I learned how to ride a horse, I thought about how I could speak to sound like her. Every detail is like a homework for me. My biggest aim is to become that person rather than looking beautiful on the screen.
Would you like to fall in love, of a kind just like in the series? Would you fight for love?
Ebru: In the series, there are two people who have been drawn to each other by deep passion. Even though I always like to listen to my heart, I wouldn’t listen to it for a love which is born out of chaos. This is not falling in love or experiencing love, but struggling to reach to it and that’s too exhausting for me.
Akin: Apparently I want it so much that I am playing the lead role. A love which I don’t struggle to reach is not love, I guess.
Well, do you believe in love at first sight? What kind of a person you are in love?
Akin: Doesn’t love happen at first sight anyway? I feel like doing meditation when I’m in love.
Ebru: I do not believe in love at first sight but I believe in having a sense that you may love someone at first sight. For real love I believe you need chemistry and you need time to get to know each other. I would love to be with someone who has a high IQ, is kind and honest. But I don’t think people can conform to stereotypes when it comes to love. I think we need to experience every emotion and pay attention without betraying our own lives.
If you could compare love to something, what would it be?
Ebru: To me love is a baby that grows old with all its beauty and anxiety and every humane emotion. Because you can’t cage love in itself forever. You should let it be born and watch it while it enriches and becomes more beautiful. If you let it be, it won’t ever separate from you.
Akin : I would say a teacher. Because love raises awareness about yourself and your own life.
Who do you draw inspiration from?
Akin: Everyone I connect with.
Ebru: I can draw inspiration from anything I hear and see, I try to understand them. This is the ultimate reality.
What does trust and loyalty mean in your opinion?
Ebru: I believe that sincerity and eternal respect are the leading actors in the relationships between people. That’s why I find it important to make them a part of my own being.
Akin: They are the pillars of a human’s personality.
What is the most exciting part of portraying brand new characters in each project?
Akin: Seeing the world through somebody else’s eyes and being able to explore new things in regards to life.
Ebru: To experience various different characters and feelings in one body. To achieve mirroring the emotions of someone whom I may not come across in real life and to see that the audience sees this person with affection.
What do you think is more important to being a successful actor? to have education/training, or to have talent? Or does “luck” have a role in this matter?
Ebru: It’s quite important for an actor to develop themselves continuously and the education process should never end. If luck helps you too, you can reach out to greater groups. For someone who is really ambitious, luck is the job itself.
Akin: Being born into this world serves as talent to becoming an actor. And education/training helps your talent to come to light. But to be a successful actor, it takes first of all, self-confidence, effort, faith and a little courage. An actor who is called “lucky” knows that it is not about luck.
What is the most tempting side of acting for you?
Akin: Telling people a story by emulating different feelings and thoughts, and meeting people on a common ground.
Ebru: The most tempting aspect for me is making people to relate to it. Sometimes people come and share their stories with us and I listen to them. I read the messages they send. For instance, they say “I couldn’t do it but Reyyan did.” What can you possibly say at that moment? Somebody you don’t even know runs to you and hugs you. Sometimes they take you as an example and sometimes they spot the mistakes. It gives me a huge spiritual satisfaction when they utter the courage that our story has awakened in them.
Which criticism, positive or negative, has stuck in your mind?
Ebru: I had an opportunity to sing one or two times. It positively motivates us to be praised by viewers about a talent which can contribute to the way we act. I receive messages about a lot of different matters, sometimes good and sometimes bad, but you can’t make everything beautiful in life. Maybe those characters have to cry ugly, maybe they can’t put on a pretty smile. In life, not everything can be perfect. If we don’t make a difference, don’t chase the truth, we will be trapped inside good-looking but identical characters in other projects.
Akin: I came across a photograph on social media where a little child was trying to wipe my tears away on a TV screen. This visual is the best criticism I can ever receive because it demonstrates that I could go beyond the screen and touch the heart of our little friend.
How does the life go lately? Is there anything you would like to change in your life or to improve yourself at?
Akin: I said in the beginning of this interview that I skipped to walking on my feet from crawling, with Hercai. Military service was an experience that taught me how to stand solidly on my feet. But I still need to learn how to run and then maybe how to fly since “Liberty is in the sky.” (A famous Turkish quote)
Ebru: I’m in a phase where I enjoy my career, where I work to enhance my future. And in the meantime, embracing the pure love that surrounds us right now makes my life more meaningful. Before changing something in my life I think about the pros and cons and I question “Why did this happen to me?” And I gratefully do whatever I can and take new steps.
If something could make you euphoric right now, what would it be?
Ebru: Exploring the nature makes me so happy. A nice vacation, getting to know new cultures, searching the historical events of the cities which I don’t know… these are some things I enjoy.
Akin: For example, if a song that I really love started to play, I’d be very happy.
What about cuisine? Which region’s foods you like the most?
Akin: As a pescatarian, Mediterranean cuisine is the most appropriate for me. My favorite food is sushi.
Ebru: I really have a weakness for foods. In my opinion, Turkish cuisine is so special and serves to every kind of taste. On the other hand, I love Italian cuisine and tropical fruits.
What is your definition of “a good day”? Can you describe a day which is enjoyable for you?
Ebru: Everyday in which I do sports after waking up and then have a nice breakfast, listen to the music I love, together with my friends and in nature and surrounded by sincerity is good for me.
Akin: A busy but satisfying filming day, coming back home to take a hot shower then a peaceful sleep afterward.
Do you have a capability that we don’t know about and surprises people when you tell them?
Akin: I guess I don’t know it either. We can be surprised together when I find it.
Ebru: My sixth sense is strong. When the things I foresee according to my sixth sense become real it surprises my fiends.
How do you motivate yourself when you face a hardship during the day?
Ebru: I do meditation, I refresh myself by clearing my mind. And I always imagine a day from the future when that hardship will have been just a memory and remind myself it won’t be important on that day.
Akin: Akin do it! (I can do it & Akin, do it!)
Do you like to take risks? Which was the craziest move you have ever made?
Akin: “The biggest risk is taking no risks at all.” I was studying applied maths in one of the world’s best universities then I suddenly decided to become an actor in my senior year.
Ebru: When I want something so bad, I’m like “Let’s do this! We’ll think about what to do next according to the results.” It was a different process quitting everything and choosing to become an actress. It was a decision that others around me found hard to accept.
Lastly, could you make an evaluation of your past and future?
Ebru: My state of mind is more tranquil than before and that’s because I am getting better at knowing myself. I realize that my awareness raises day by day and I’m becoming more sensitive about everything. And I hope to be a stronger woman in the future.
Akin: F.W. Robertson: “A past that we cannot change stays behind whereas a future we can shape and own awaits us.”
Behind the scenes video of photo shoot.
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