Tuncel Tayanç Kurtiz (February 1, 1936 - September 27, 2013) was a Turkish actor, director, and screenwriter. A veteran of the stage and screen, he starred in over a hundred productions over the course of his career, including several international projects.
Tuncel was born in Bahçecik, a small village in Kocaeli province. He studied English philology at university but fell in love with the theatre, choosing to pursue a career in acting after graduation. His breakout role onscreen was in 1970's Umut, which was at the time banned by the government; however, a copy was smuggled to Cannes, where it received accolades.
Following the success of Umut, he continued to work in his native Turkey. He starred in socially-conscious films such as On Fertile Lands and Sürü, which garnered critical praise. In the 1980s, he increasingly turned his attention to foreign productions, working in France, Germany, Sweden, Israel, and India, among others. His international output included Fatih Akın's acclaimed Edge of Heaven and the Israeli film Smile of the Lamb (Hiuch Ha Gdi), for which he won the Silver Bear Award for Best Actor at the Berlinale International Film Festival.
Tuncel Kurtiz also participated in several popular television series. He starred in the family drama Asi alongside Tuba Büyüküstün, and played the iconic role of Ramiz "Dayı" Karaeski in Ezel. In 2012, he was cast as the influential judge Ebu Suud Efendi on the hit historical series Magnificent Century.
He died on September 27, 2013 at the age of 77.
Trivia and Tropes present in his work:
- The Cast Showoff: Tuncel was a polyglot who spoke several languages fluently, and studied many others to participate in international productions.
- Character Outlives Actor: Magnificent Century had started its fourth and final season when he died. Because Ebu Suud still had an important role to play, the character communicated with the Sultan through letters after the actor's death.
- Şeytanın Uşakları (1964)
- Umut (1970)
- Kanal (1978)
- Sürü (The Herd) (1978)
- On Fertile Lands (1980)
- Duvar (1983)
- The Smile of the Lamb (1986, Israel)
- The Mahabharata (1989, India)
- Täcknamn Coq Rouge (1989, Sweden)
- Skyddsängeln (1990, Sweden)
- Istanbul Beneath my Wings (1996)
- Somersault in a Coffin (1996)
- Akrebin Yolculuğu (1997)
- Sawdust Tales (1997, Turkey/Germany/Hungary)
- Vive la mariée... et la libération du Kurdistan (1997, France)
- A Cavallo della Tigre (2002, Italy)
- The Edge of Heaven (2007, Germany/Turkey)
- Güz Sancısı (2008)
- Mutlu Aile Defteri (2012)