Seda Anbarci: Teller of Stories

Seda Anbarci Interview by Jen Bush

Seda Anbarci had the right formula in mind when she swapped science for screenwriting.  She had more chemistry with telling stories than with chemistry.  She talks about her journey from the lab to the lens.  “My name is Seda Anbarci and I’m originally from Istanbul, Turkey. Since I was a kid, I have loved the art of storytelling. After studying Chemical and Biological Engineering, I finally realized that I’ve been writing stories, especially TV and film concepts, as a “hobby” my whole life. I wanted to get a master’s degree in Screenwriting and Filmmaking. I did some certificate programs, and later, I was accepted into New York Film Academy in Los Angeles, where I got my MFA in Screenwriting degree.

I initially worked in the development aspect of filmmaking. After producing and directing a lot of short films and web series, I got interested in the production aspect of filmmaking as well. I developed myself as a writer & director. During my bachelor’s in Chemical and Biological Engineering, I’ve found my passion in creating stories for the screen. I love that we get to watch a character grow and learn over seasons of a TV series and that’s what inspired me to become a screenwriter & filmmaker.”

Ms. Anbarci recognized that the ideal place to learn filmmaking was where most of the films are made.

It is her hope that her craft shines a light on groups of people that could use more positive exposure.  “I wanted to learn Filmmaking and Screenwriting in Los Angeles where the magic happens. When I got accepted into New York Film Academy, Los Angeles, for my master’s degree, I was blessed with great internship opportunities and productions.

I’ve been living in Los Angeles for 4 years and working in the industry for 2 years now. I believe that I have so much to do here, especially being a voice for the diverse crowd and underrepresented communities as well as bringing my unique background and perspective to the table.”

Ms. Anbarci seeks to go beyond entertaining an audience.  If she can give them something to think about and question, she feels she did her job.  “I love it when we channel our experiences into films and shows and make something authentic, unique, and has a diverse perspective. I love the aspect of filmmaking that entertains people and provokes questions about our existence, life, society, and more. So, I love leaving the audience with a question. Sometimes existential, sometimes a small curiosity, but I think that it’s important to provoke questions in the audience’s mind to encourage growth and critical thinking while entertaining them.”

Ms. Anbarci inspirations are the cream of the crop of industry people.  “Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy! They are a great inspiration for aspiring television creators and showrunners.”

Ms. Anbarci is always thinking and creating.  She has a wealth of ideas to generate projects from.  When directing, she forms strong ties with the actors and values their insights and input.  “I get so many ideas every day and I write all of them down. When I’m working on writing a script, I choose from those ideas and work on it. My process involves writing and reading every day. When I’m directing a project, I love connecting with actors and channeling their experiences into the project. I love collaborating with artists to make something unique and be the voice of an experience, a story. I love thinking on the story and characters for hours and challenge myself to push the characters into uncomfortable situations in my stories, just to see what I come up with.”

The pandemic presented significant challenges in every industry and was also eye opening in terms of necessary changes.  “During the pandemic, the filmmaking process was even harder, but I think it taught us filmmakers a lot about what has to change in the industry.”

June is a very busy month for Ms. Anbarci with two exciting projects in the works. “My next two projects are coming in June and I’m super excited for them!! One of them is an audio fiction podcast called “Bonnie Screws Up,” produced by Aural Stories. It’s a production company by female producers & they aim to create content that can become the voice of female filmmakers. “Bonnie Screws Up” is about an actress from Spain who is torn between the Hollywood dream and following her heart. She makes her way up to become an A-lister, but at what cost? The podcast show will be available on your favorite podcast app on June 22nd!!! The second project premieres on June 12th, and it’s an LGBTQ+ family drama & romance web series that I’ve directed & co-wrote. It’s called “Here We Are” and we made it with my talented writing partner, Lissette Camacho. It will be out on our Youtube channel, Lisseda Productions. Learn more about the Here We Are web series: https://www.instagram.com/herewearewebseries/ More about me: https://www.instagram.com/sedaanbarci/

What began as a hobby is now a career path where tales will be woven and audiences will be given something to think about as they are entertained.

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