blue id movie film turkish transgender identities gender
Trigger warning: discussing subjects of
warning: Adult content
Project by:
Burcu Melekoglu & Vuslat Karan
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July 13, 2023
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Pink Or 'Blue ID'?

In the colorful tapestry of Turkish society, the color of an ID card is used to determine more than just identity—it defined gender. Pink for women, blue for men. But what happens when someone dares to challenge these rigid societal norms? This is the reality for Rüzgar who, before his transition, was a famous actress who was frequently in the public eye. But how is the process of transitioning into a country with a disturbingly high transgender murder rate?

"Blue ID" initially aimed to capture the joyous experience of Rüzgar's transition. However, it quickly evolves into a poignant exploration of the delicate balance between privacy and isolation, the unrelenting glare of the paparazzi, and the courage it takes to be an openly transgender public figure in a society that enforces strict gender distinctions.

The film garnered widespread acclaim, receiving the prestigious Audience Award at IDFA, the world's largest documentary film festival held in Amsterdam. Through "Blue ID," viewers are granted an intimate glimpse into Rüzgar's reality, as he battles against all odds to live authentically.

On October 4, 2012, a significant milestone in Rüzgar's gender affirmation journey was marked by his first testosterone injection—an injection of hope and transformation. Little did he know the immense challenges that awaited him. The film unflinchingly reveals the pervasive homophobia and transphobia that permeates Turkish society, exposing the struggles faced by Rüzgar as he becomes headline news due to his previous fame.

The pinnacle of his transition is symbolized by the exchange of his pink ID card for a blue one—an arduous process marked by frustration, humiliation, and seemingly endless waiting. Captured through a blend of personal home movies and self-assured phone videos, "Blue ID" provides an intimate and raw portrayal of Rüzgar's struggle for self-realization and acceptance within traditional society, all while being subjected to intense media scrutiny.

As the narrative unfolds, "Blue ID" serves as a compelling testament to the unwavering strength and resolve of the human spirit. It shines a much-needed light on the challenges faced by transgender individuals in Turkey, ultimately advocating for a more inclusive and compassionate society.

Images courtesy of the movie


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