Movies

Turkish Movie Stars of Yesteryear – Tragic Blonde Bombshell, Elif Pektas

We’re not sure why there aren’t any movie film-clips or photos of Elif Pektas on the Internet

(apart from those that we’ve now uploaded) — or why online biographical info about Elif Hanim is so skimpy. A Turkish movie fan left barely the whiff of a hint for that deficiency in a comment at http://www.sinematurk.com (the Turkish-language movie database of Turkish film) when he/she wrote:

Çok ön plana çikamadi She never made it big… But why was that?

Was it because she was such an insignificant figure in Turkish cinema history? Allah aşkina! That doesn’t square with the evidence of her filmography — which shows that Elif Pektas appeared in 32 feature films between 1970 and 1980… in starring roles opposite some of Turkey’s most famous award-winning male actors (eg. Kadır Inanır, Tarik Akan, and Cüneyt Arkin) under the direction of some of Turkey’s most famous and important (and award-winning) directors (eg. Zeki Ökten, Osman F. Seden, and Ertem Göreç) in films written by some of Turkey’s finest award-winning screenplay writers (eg. Sadik Sendil, Natuk Baytan, and Safa Önal).

Is the Internet-neglect of Elif Hanim a sort of ‘punishment’ because she made 10 erotic films during 1975-1976 — in which she unabashedly disrobed (eg. in Babama Selam 1976) and wasn’t squeamish about the occasional lesbian scene (eg. in Parayla Degil Sırayla 1975)?

Or is it that no one wants to be reminded of her long struggle with cancer, diagnosed when she was just 37? In relation to that possibility, Erotic Film Historian Cihan Demirci wrote, “Elif Pektas’s story is a sad one in which she struggled 20 years with bone-marrow cancer — before passing away in 2003 at 57. One can’t help wondering, however irrational it may be, if her demise had anything to do with her participation in the Seks Furyasi (erotic movie boom) of the 1970’s.”

Demirci’s remark isn’t completely without foundation…because the Seks Furyasi claimed other erotic female actors too, who were somehow cursed — and who also met untimely ends: Alev Altin (cancer, age 29), Mine Mutlu (cancer, age 42), Feri Cansel (murder, age 39), Seher Seniz (suicide, age 44), Funda Gürkan (accidental drug overdose, age 36).

[Click following to access a picture-laden HTML-version of Elif Pektas — Erotic and Conventional Turkish Movie Star during 1970-1980.]

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