Have you heard of the documentary “Alias Kurban Said” by Dutch filmmaker Jos de Putter?

If you don’t know it, you might want to consider getting a copy. Scroll down for the link.

You will love this documentary particularly when you’re a fan of Tom Reiss’ book “The Orientalist”. Why? Because you can see here a number of people Tom writes about – or at least their relatives.

As much as I LOVE this film, allow me to make some additional remarks:

This film bears the release date of 2004, which means that the research it presents is from that time and earlier. I suppose the interviews were done in 2003. Back then we didn’t know about Essad Bey’s / Kurban Said’s life as much as we know today.  And this is understandable.

Bear in mind that this beautiful film cannot (and does not) answer the question, who the author of “Ali and Nino” is. Therefore, if you are looking for that answer, you’ll run the risk of being more confused after watching this documentation, because all options are presented equally.

BUT: By now this film is a historical document because many of the interviewed people are no longer with us. And Bruno Ganz’ voice is a special treat!

A detailed commentary for expanded information and knowledge – as well as for rectification of some statements which are more of the adventurous kind (particularly by the Baroness) is in the making and will be published in this Blog.

A recommended DVD!!!

P.S. In case you wonder why the initiative for this documentary came from the Netherlands – of all countries -, the answer is quite simple.

The population of the Netherlands in 2016 was barely 17 million.

Then we see that four (!) different translations of “Ali and Nino” into Dutch exist – to date the world-record!

  • 1938, W. A. Fick-Lugten;
  • 1974, Else Hoog;
  • 1991, Willem Oorthuizen;
  • 2001, Gerda Meijerink.

These four translation have been published in about 9 different editions which saw about 18 print runs. And not to forget an audio book!

By this we easily can assume that this ranks the Netherlands into the top three countries world wide, as far as the popularity of “Ali and Nino” is concerned.

More about this subject in my forthcoming “Ali and Nino” monography. Info about this publication will be published as it becomes available (the info).

This is a link to Jos de Putter’s own website: https://www.josdeputter.com/alias-kurban-said

This is a link to Zeppersfilm, where you can buy the DVD. Don’t worry about the Dutch text. The DVD is in German, English, Russian – and with English subtitles.