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Zeynep Bilginsoy

(she/her)
Producer
Istanbul, Istanbul TR
Available for Freelance
Open To Mentoring
Open To Virtual Coffee
Producer and freelance journalist based in Istanbul, collaborating with international clients on documentaries, features, podcasts and breaking news.

About

Zeynep is an award-winning producer and freelance journalist based in Istanbul. She has produced documentaries, features, podcasts and news for international clients, including Vice, Showtime, BBC, CNN, The Associated Press and independent filmmakers. The latest film she produced is First Frames (dir. Ilie Mitaru), an independent documentary on children in Turkey's southeast learning photography as they contend with issues of displacement, memory and access to education following the 2023 earthquakes. The film will be screening in festivals in 2024. In 2022, she won an Emmy as part of the Vice team that made the “Return of the Taliban” as local producer. In the hour-long special's section produced in Turkey, she helped film the plight of Afghan migrants leaving their country, documenting their perilous journey and also securing access to law enforcement operations. In a follow-up film called "No Safe Haven" for Vice's Showtime documentary series, she gained more access on the Turkish-Iranian border, followed an Afghan family as they tried to make it to Greece via land and embedded with the Turkish coast guard on the Aegean Sea. Zeynep has collaborated on other award-winning productions. She provided production services in Turkey to Showtime Documentary Film's Emmy-winning "Kingdom of Silence" (2020) about murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. She field produced the multi-award winning BBC Sounds podcast "I'm Not a Monster: The Shamima Begum Story," along with a BAFTA-nominated feature-length documentary, which investigated the polarizing British teenager's journey from Bethnal Green to Syria to join ISIS. Part of Zeynep's strength as a producer comes from years of reporting on Turkey and the region as a freelance print reporter for AP. After nearly 10 years of covering Turkey's unceasing breaking news, she is shifting to producing long-form television and documentaries. Zeynep received her BA from the University of Chicago and MA from New York University, specializing in Middle Eastern history and politics. She is bilingual in Turkish and English and is HEFAT-trained.