Already an accomplished actress in her home country, Turkey, Saadet Aksoy has also become an internationally renowned celebrity in the film industry. She has received international recognition as an actress from her performance in the Sergio Castellitto directed 2013 movie Venuto al mondo (Twice Born). The Turkish actress was awarded generously for her debut, Egg, in 2007. Born on August 29, 1983, Saadet, whose movies were the highlights of several international film festivals, has been receiving positive reviews from several critics for Twice Born although the movie itself was not able to receive the same high praise from the audience as well as the critics.
In the English language, ‘Saadet’ translates to bliss. Saadet was named after her late paternal grandmother. Her grandmother from her mother’s side was an influential businesswoman in Turkey of her time. The Istanbul native has been able to draw much support and inspiration from the women in her life. Her mother is a former police officer as is her father, Anil Aksoy. She and her two brothers, who are older than her, had a well-off upbringing and sent her to the UK at the age of 14 to travel and learn English culture. Her interest in foreign culture brought her to the Bogazici University from where she graduated with a degree in English language and literature. Needless to say, the actress can speak English fluently and has a basic knowledge of French and Italian.
Before her official film appearance, Saadet had already made a name for herself in the country by appearing on national television by hosting and presenting several television shows and taking on commercials. While she attended college, she also kept up her stride in acting by appearing on stage productions and short films. She has appeared on Turkish television for shows like Guz Yangini, Balkan Dugunu, Senden Baska and the soap opera Magnificent Century. On-stage she starred in Turkish productions of Steel Magnolias and Shoot/Get/Treasure/Repeat. Her breakthrough in the film industry came with her debut movie role in the Semih Kapalnoglu directed drama Egg, the first installment of the Yusuf trilogy in 2007. The movie was a critical and commercial success in film festivals at Cannes, Valdivia and Sarajevo where the actress was honored with awards for Best Actress. She also received awards for the movie at the Siyad Awards, Yesilcam Film Award, Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival and Ankara International Film Festival. She also starred in the sequel, Milk, in 2008. She was later seen in Alejandro Chomski’s A Beautiful Life and Cannes Film Festival hit Eastern Plays by Kamen Kalev in 2009. She also received Best Actress awards for her role in Love in Another Language at the Ankara International Film Festival and Bursa Silk Raod Film Festival. Her first international role was a small one in Bart Freundlich’s romantic comedy The Rebound which starred Justin Bartha and Catherine Zeta Jones. In 2012, she got international praise for her role in the Penelope Cruz starrer Twice Born. The movie has been adapted from a Margaret Mazzantini novel of the same name and was released at the Toronto International Film Festival that year. Her most recent acting performances can be seen in the 2013 film Surgun and Italian series Ragion di Stato in 2014.
The actress has not only participated in film festivals as a participant but also as a judge. She has been on the judge panels for Cairo International Film Festival, Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival, Sarajevo Film Festival and Istanbul International Film Festival. Saadet has also associated herself with L’Oreal Paris as their Turkish spokesperson and has worked with Educational Volunteers Foundation of Turkey and UNICEF Turkey.
Saadet Aksoy has received moderate fame in the film industry outside of her country and hopefully she will be appearing in major starring roles in international films too.