In the Morning

04:25 min
Dramatic Narrative
Director: Danielle Lurie
Producer: Katie Mustard

Winner of the Women’s Rights Award


More About In The Morning from Director Danielle Lurie

When a young Turkish woman, Derya, 15, is brutally attacked, her family rushes to avenge the crime in order to restore the family’s lost honor. Because he will serve the shortest jail sentence, Derya’s youngest brother, Baran, 13, who is handed a gun and ordered to murder the criminal - in the name of his family’s honor. Based on a true story, In The Morning recounts the true events of an actual “honor killing.”

Danielle Lurie was inspired by a New York Times article titled “Turkish Honor Killings Defy Efforts to End Them” which focused on the murder of a woman by her brother for becoming pregnant out of wedlock. Lurie subsequently met with the reporter of the piece as well as with the leader of the Women’s Group KA-MER, an organization that helps endangered women in Turkey escape their homes. Moved by what she learned, Lurie developed the screenplay to bring greater public attention to a pressing issue that is not confined to Turkey-but a disturbing phenomenon in many parts of the world.

In The Morning is spoken in phonetic Turkish by non-Turkish actors due to the fact that no Turkish actors would agree to be a part of a film that touched on the issue of Honor Killings; most claiming that such a practice simply does not exist.  One Turkish woman came in to audition for the lead role of Derya - who plays the only daughter in a family otherwise saturated with men. When she learned that the film was about Honor Killings she refused to audition, saying that “no such thing as this occurs” in her home country. She asked Lurie why she, as an American, had chosen to make a film on an issue in another country, telling Lurie that this was not her culture so shouldn’t be her concern. To this Lurie replied “that this practice happens to women anywhere is enough cause for me to make a film to try to expose it.”.

Today, there is pressing and enormous need for greater public awareness of the practice of Honor Killings. Although the film is subtly set in Turkey, it aims to be representative of all countries suffering from this practice, namely: Bangladesh, Great Britain, Brazil, Ecuador, Egypt, India, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Pakistan, Morocco, Sweden, Turkey, Uganda, as well as Iraq and Iran. Lurie says that she ‘made this film for all the women who, simply put, cannot. It is my hope that this film will create awareness about this issue in order to one day abolish it.


criminal justice, Media That Matters 6,
Creative Commons License: Attribution, Non-Commercial, No Derivative Works


Reach over 100,000 mediamakers, educators, nonprofits and activists at Media That Matters 17! Download this PDF for more info.