Turkish film directors have won numerous prestigious awards in the recent years. Nuri Bilge Ceylan won the Best Director Award at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival with the film Üç Maymun. This was the fourth time that Ceylan received an award at Cannes, following the awards for the film Uzak (which was also nominated for the Golden Palm) at the festival of 2003 and 2004, and the film İklimler (also nominated for the Golden Palm) at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival. These three films, along with the other important works of Ceylan such as Kasaba (1997) and Mayıs sıkıntısı (1999) have also won awards at the other major international film festivals; including the Angers European First Film Festival (1997 and 1999), Ankara Film Festival (2000), Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival (1999, 2002 and 2006), Bergamo Film Meeting (2001), Berlin Film Festival (1998), Brothers Manaki Film Festival (2003), Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Cinema (2001), Cannes Film Festival (2003, 2004 and 2006), Chicago Film Festival (2003), Cinemanila Film Festival (2003), European Film Awards (2000), Istanbul Film Festival (1998, 2000, 2003 and 2007), Mexico City Film Festival (2004), Montpellier Mediterranean Film Festival (2003), San Sebastián Film Festival (2003), Singapore Film Festival (2001), Sofia Film Festival (2004), Tokyo Film Festival (1998) and the Trieste Film Festival (2004)
More recently, Semih Kaplanoğlu won the Golden Bear at the 60th Berlin International Film Festival with his Honey (2010 film); the third and final installment of the “Yusuf Trilogy”, which includes Egg and Milk. This was the second time a Turkish film wins the award; first one being Susuz Yaz by Metin Erksan in 1964.
Turkish film director Fatih Akın, who lives in Germany and has dual Turkish-German citizenship, won the Golden Bear Award at the 2004 Berlin Film Festival with the film Head-On. The film won numerous other awards in many international film festivals. Fatih Akın was nominated for the Golden Palm and won the Best Screenplay Award at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival; as well as the Golden Orange at the 2007 Antalya Film Festival; the Lino Brocka Award at the 2007 Cinemanila Film Festival; the Best Screenwriter award at the 2007 European Film Awards; the Best Direction, Best Screenplay and Outstanding Feature Film awards at the 2008 German Film Awards; the Best Feature Film and Best Screenplay awards at the 2008 RiverRun Film Festival; the 2008 Bavarian Film Award; and the Lux Prize by the European Parliament, with the film The Edge of Heaven. Other important films of Akın, such as Kurz und schmerzlos (1998), Im Juli (2000), Solino (2002), and Crossing the Bridge: The Sound of Istanbul (2005) won numerous awards.
Another famous Turkish film director is Ferzan Özpetek, whose films like Hamam (1997), Harem suaré (1999), Le Fate Ignoranti (2001), La finestra di fronte (2003), Cuore Sacro (2005) and Saturno contro (2007) won him international fame and awards. The film La finestra di fronte (2003) was particularly successful, winning the Best Film and Scholars Jury awards at the 2003 David di Donatello Awards, the Crystal Globe and Best Director awards at the 2003 Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, the 2003 Silver Ribbon for Best Original Story from the Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalists, the Festival Prize at the 2004 Foyle Film Festival, the Audience Award at the 2004 Rehoboth Beach Independent Film Festival, and the Canvas Audience Award at the 2004 Flanders International Film Festival.