Our Interview with Asude Kalebek, One of the New Stars of Netflix | StepS Interviews

Asude Kalebek, who we know as the Raşel of the Netflix series “The Club”, answered the questions of our StepS editors in our club room. We have gathered this pleasant conversation for you in this article. Do not forget to visit our Boğaziçi Üniversitesi Mühendislik Kulübü (Engineering Society) YouTube channel to watch the interview.


Our first question is about Boğaziçi University as you are a student at there. What is your favorite part of Boğaziçi University?

The fact that there are too many electives. So, I can take literature and film classes. Also the fact that my friends are really intellectual, they help me to improve myself as a person.


-How was the selection process for the role in the Netflix series “The Club”?

For a year or even a year and a half, I sent auditions everywhere. I was not selected for any of them. I gave auditions for this role repeatedly for six months and was eventually selected.


How was the behind the scenes of the series?

It was fun, we had a lot of fun, especially with Salih, because he is a very upbeat person. It was also very tense. Both the burden I put on myself because it was my first job and the tension whether I would be able to do exactly what was expected or not were always present.


This series has very famous people in its cast. What was it like to act with these actors as your first experience, what were the pros and cons?

Mostly it has pros because they knew it was my first job. They were aware that I had not done anything before and had not received any training. As much as they could, of course, as our relationship progressed, they guided me both in terms of life and acting. Acting is something a little more reactive. So you’re actually doing what you get. So it was a big chance for me.


How was the shooting process of the series?

So busy. I came home at night, slept, and went out in the morning. I only had time for it. It’s hard but fun because I go to so many different places. For example, there are scenes in the orphanage, Istiklal Avenue, inside the club. It was like every day was a new adventure. I experienced different emotions every day. I didn’t know what to expect myself, I always learn on the way.


Do you see the character of Raşel you play as close to you? I mean, did you think that when you were acting, you would take action like her or do something differently if you had a life like hers?

Now, first of all, I wouldn’t be with İsmet. Raşel and İsmet’s relationship is quite problematic, but of course Raşel is 17 years old and doesn’t know much about relationships. I have similar aspects with Raşel, for example, sometimes living without thinking too much. Especially at that age, I acted like her, but of course I’m not like that anymore.


Was there anyone on set who made it easy for you to play your part, supported you, or got along very well?

Gökçe Bahadır. Matilda. My mother. She helped and supported me a lot, especially before I entered the scene. You know, her touch was enough for me to cry because we were already shooting very intense and emotional scenes. We were crying the moment we touched each other because our characters are so far apart as mother and daughter and that pre-scene touch was very affecting.


Speaking of the crew, is there an actor you dream of acting with?

No one as an actor, but I want to act in Europe and do something there. Now I’m studying Translation and Interpreting Studies, learning languages.


We see Istanbul in the 1950s in the series. Would you like to live in that era?

No, as a woman, I would not want to live in the conditions of that period. I don’t know if it’s better now, but I still wouldn’t want to live in that era.


Have you ever been affected by the criticism, especially the bad reviews, and have you been sad because of them?

The thing that impressed me the most during this period was the criticism. I didn’t know what to expect, I didn’t know how my life would change. At the same time, I had no idea how people would react, and both good and bad reactions are burdensome. Normally, I go to school. Those who know me know, those who don’t know don’t. But now a portrait of Asude has formed in their minds and this portrait is a separate person from me, it is not me. I take criticism. I accept it, but it’s hard to constantly hear something from so many people, to become mediatic, to censor things while talking. That’s why I stayed at home more and spent time at home. Not because I’m upset about criticism, but because I’m not used to getting criticism this much.


Have you received any feedback on your work from abroad?

I know it is very popular in Brazil and Russia. Another thing that happened was this: Everything filmed on Netflix goes to Los Angeles. From there, they called our production team and asked, “Who is this girl?” They told them that they liked me.


Do you have a Netflix Premium account?

No, I don’t even have Netflix. I’m using my sibling’s. (Laughter)


What was the first character you played on stage?

There was a prostitute character in Brecht’s play “The Good Person of Szechwan”, I played her.


What would you do if you had not entered the world of theater and acting?

I was going to do whatever makes money. I really like video editing work, maybe I would do that job.


What are your hobbies?

It’s more about my department. I love learning languages. I like to learn about cultures because with language comes culture. I actually love everything about people. I love literature. I love photography. I love cinema.


What’s your favorite series?

I love Normal People and Fleabag. I’m also a fan of the Magnificent Century.


Did you have acting in mind while coming to school?

Yes, I had acting on my mind when I came to Istanbul. I can even say that I came to pursue that.


You mentioned that you could not find opportunities to learn more about acting while you were in Adana. So, how did you improve yourself after Adana? Did you start acting somewhere? How was the training process until the series?

I was at Boğaziçi University Theater Club for a year. I learned to do some business there, I learned discipline, at least I learned theater discipline. I did not receive any further education after that. I think I developed because I dream a lot, this is that kind of a job.


What was your family’s opinion about you acting, were they supporting you all the time?

They were used to this idea because I’ve always been talking about it since I was little, but it was very strange for them when things got serious. They were frightened, especially by the social pressure people on media were subjected to. Being on Netflix also made it a bit difficult, because you are in the middle of the attention with all of your existence. While I was thinking about acting when I was little, I couldn’t help myself but also think about what my family would say, but somehow it worked. After the series ended, my father sent very nice messages and congratulated me.


Is there a role that you want to play the most or was there a role that make you go “I would have do it better” while watching?

No, but I would like play in dramas, psychological or tragic works.


Do you have a role model in foreign media?

I like French actors. Before I came here today, I came across Marion Cotillard’s interview, it was very nice. I don’t have an idol, I get different inspirations from everyone. I would have liked to follow someone from Turkey, but I think I want to pave my own path.


You stated that you wanted to work abroad. So, which country interests you the most?

It could be Italy. I like it there, especially Italian cinema. As I said, France is beautiful, but it doesn’t matter that much because they are all different and places I don’t know are more exciting, such things are more beautiful.


Do you want to live abroad, apart from working abroad?

As in all of us, I have a desire to go and the thought that everything will be better when I go. However on the other hand, I guess I am a person who is a little tied to my roots. I would miss my life in here, I know that too.


Can you maintain the same good quality of acting in English?

First of all, thank you for saying it is good (laughter), I think it could be even better. This is one of the downsides of our school because we speak more English in classes, so English is something I’m a little more familiar with. So I don’t think it would be bad.


Did anyone stop you on your way to take a photo with you after you became famous? Have you ever been bothered by such reasons?

I’ve never been bothered, but there are people who stare without taking their eyes off me. I wonder if they recognized me or not. They don’t even say anything. There are people who want to take pictures from time to time, but it is a good thing, so I am very happy. I also get a lot of invitations from Israel because they see their own lives in the series. They say come to Israel and stay with us, I like it very much.


We would like to thank Ms. Asude for answering our questions.

Thank you for hosting me at my school. It’s been special for me.

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