Turkish viewers have heavily criticized the outdated portrayal of Istanbul in the recent Hollywood hit “Taken 2,” prompting a stinging rebuttal from the film’s Turkish distributor, daily Hürriyet reported.

Viewers sent endless complaints to the production company that holds the rights to the movie in Turkey, highlighting several mistakes made in the representation of Istanbul. 

The taxi cabs and police vehicles in the movie are taken from the 1970s, while Turkey is shown having borders with Albania, viewers said. All the women who appear on screen during the Istanbul scene are covered and veiled. 

The continuing anger from viewers prompted a response from the producers in Turkey. “Were we making a promo movie for Istanbul

on [producer] Luc Besson’s money?” producer Diloy Gülün was quoted as saying. 

“The bad intentions should be sought in those who look down on Eminönü, Balat and Süleymaniye, who keep likening them in a demeaning manner to the Iran that they have never been to, and expect beautiful things to only happen in a line between Nişantaşı and Bebek,” Gülün said.

Noting that the film depicts the kidnapping of the main characters at the hands of the Albanian mafia, Gülün said, “Some of members of the audience wanted [the mafia] to kidnap them away to Arnavutköy [on the Bosphorus] or Kanyon [mall] just so that there could be a promo for Istanbul.”

Gülün also commented on the use of 1970s vehicles in the movie, saying the directors and visual designers felt “those vehicles better fit the atmosphere of the movie.”

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