Mustang won the 2015 Lux Film Prize for its moving story of five Turkish sisters who, determined to live their own lives, break with tradition. "I wanted to say with quite a sense of urgency what it was to be a woman, something which was even more acute and urgent in the case of Turkey," said director Deniz Gamze Ergüven of her film. Describing herself as "immensely honoured" upon receiving the award, the French-Turkish director said Mustang was a film that promoted European ideals.
In our interview, Ergüven described Mustang as a story which anyone can relate to, as it was about aspiring to freedom.
Ergüven’s film revolves around the lives of five Turkish sisters, filled with the same desire for freedom, who set about circumventing the limits imposed on them by traditional society.
Awarding the Lux Film Prize to Ergüven on 24 November, Parliament President Martin Schulz said: "At a time when the enemies of pluralism are fighting to destroy our culture through brutality, we have to defend our diversity. This is why the Prize is so important."
Born in Turkey but having spent her childhood in France, Ergüven noted in her acceptance speech how she herself straddles two countries. She pointed out that her film - a coproduction between France, Germany and Turkey - "has generated harmony between three countries and has brought together a team which is in the image of Europe".
Mustang premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in May. Find out more about the film's background by watching our video interview above.