Turkish series Atiye, starring Beren Saat

Novelist sues Netflix Turkish series for plagiarism

Turkish writer Buket Uzuner accuses Netflix of plagiarising her characters in the Turkish series Atiye, starring actress Beren Saat.

Well-known Turkish novelist Buket Uzuner has sued the producer of the Netflix original Turkish series “Atiye”, starring the famous Turkish actress Beren Saat, for plagiarism, claiming that the characters of the series have been copied from her novel “Toprak” without her consent.

The lawsuit filed against the production company and Netflix before a court in Istanbul asks the latter to issue an order to suspend the broadcast of the series – translated into English as “The Gift” – as well as a financial compensation amounting to 51,000 Turkish liras – about 5,700 euros – for damages caused to the novelist’s copyrights.

Speaking to Turkish press, Uzuner explained that indeed a producer had called her a long time ago to explain that he wanted to shoot a Turkish series for Netflix that would star a female character similar to Defne Kaman (a character in Uzuner’s novels), and that for 8 months she maintained contacts with said producer, but without any agreement or contract being formalised.

“When I saw the series, I saw that the characters in my book had been copied exactly… We have to fight against theft of ideas, just as we fight for freedom of thought,” Uzuner said.

Starring Beren Saat, Atiye is the second original Turkish series to air on Netflix after The Protector and tells the story of a young artist (Atiye) whose life changes drastically when she meets an archaeologist as a result of an astonishing discovery that she makes in the ruins of Göbeklitepe, the oldest temple built by Humanity.