Can Yaman Interview With Vanity Fair Italia was translated to English by Can Yaman International
The concierge of the Eden Hotel in Rome, legendary location of the Roman Dolce Vita, had not seen these scenes for a long time: little girls, young women and women of all ages stretched towards Can Yaman who, pirate and gentleman, combining the classical and statuesque canons of a Greek God with the wilder and more adventurous ones of Sandokan, gives a smile that opens chasms and at the same time solves them.
They call him a “phenomenon” because of the numbers regarding him (over eight million followers on Instagram, passionate, attentive, devoted fanpages), he arouses indecent thoughts, he’s the object of desire and has suddenly become a model of values to a large and varied female universe : he’s the grandson every grandma wants, the high school girl’s ideal husband and every mother’s perfect son-in-law.
But his love is (almost) all for Diletta Leotta, in spite of the rumors of a true, almost military presence in his existence, who calls him when he is on the set of this service for consultation, advice. And a coming and going of messages lighting up his face from nowhere, with the visualization.
“I can’t give you a key to a place you’re not supposed to enter. It’s more appropriate to stop a moment early, on the threshold, and watch what happens.” So, let’s rewind the tape.
“It happens in Sadiye Kadikoy, in the province of Istanbul. I was full of hair. My dad looks at my mom and says, ‘Let’s take him to the hairdresser right away.’ I come into the world and I remain as an only child, which – not having terms of comparison – I can say I do not mind it. It means having all the attention around you, not sharing it with anyone. I’ll blossom over time. Because in the beginning, honestly, I was very ugly.”
“Spent playing soccer, in the summer at the beach in the bays of Bodrum, in the winter breaking knicknacks in the house. My parents divorced early, when I was five. I don’t remember them ever being married, but united for me, yes. The three of us would go on vacations. I never felt a lack of their attention.”
What are they like?
“Mom is very disciplined, organized, German [strict], a kind of soldier, a close marker: and thanks to her I was a good student, she gave me the rules, still manages my movements and my assets, if she was not there I would be finished. Him, the opposite: customs officer, street smarts, in the end of duties is entertainment and complicity between males”.
Outside of family, what meeting changed you?
“A particular, special friend I met in Italian high school just as my father’s job started to go horribly wrong and I was in danger of having to interrupt my studies. It was the darkest period, we didn’t even have the money for the tuition, so much so that we ended up paying for it by luck, thanks to a sports bet we won.”
And what did he do for you?
“He was a genius: he was always alone, he didn’t talk to anyone. Except me. He gave me the desire to become good, and thus gave me the opportunity to continue school by obtaining scholarships. I loved reading with him, getting lost in the stories of philosophers, challenging each other to chess, listening to lectures again.
He used to tell me, “To get close to God, you have to be wise, know as much as you can. It is wisdom that binds you to him.” When he went back to his home in Albania, and I was left alone, I always felt that I had to continue to prove my worth to him, as if he was still watching me from afar. I never saw him again”.
How did you become an actor, then?
Thanks to an international call for applications, I was among the 36 best students in Turkey sent to live in the United States. I won out of the 3,000 that participated, and I got [sent to] Ohio, where I moved and supported myself through sports. There I developed the idea of wanting to study law. I told myself: the lawyer is a respected, well paid profession.
When I am 24 years old and I join Price Waterhouse Coopers, every Friday a business article of mine comes out in a very prestigious newspaper, my career flies, but I soon understand that it is crazy to be at the computer from 8 in the morning until 8 in the evening. So to diversify I enrolled in an acting class for the use of body and voice in business. I met those who are still my two agents today. And from there everything changes. Since the first series, I haven’t stopped.”
Do you always like this profession of yours?
“Except in the mornings: I’m a clumsy, silent, grumpy, irritable person before a certain hour, and I come back joyful in the afternoon, from sunset on. A real animal of the night. It’s no coincidence that I suffer a bit from insomnia.”
Since 2014 he has been shooting one Tv series a year. There is the success of Day Dreamer-The Wings of the Dream, and now Sandokan-a giant project of Lux Vide, the shooting of which will begin in the summer.
“Training, horseback riding, martial arts. I’m preparing hard. I’m inside a crucial evolution. By now I’m riding, I’m using a sword, I’m training, we’re almost there. The legacy of Kabir Bedi is not easy, I hope to be worthy, I’m really trying hard.
In what ways does this pure hero resemble you?
“In the values we have or lack and seek: love, friendship, patriotism, revenge. Women will like it, too.”
How many besiege you?
“These are tough accounts. Over 80 percent of my fans are women. There are some that are a little obsessive, that when you take their cell phone to take a selfie you realize they have me printed all over them. On the duffle bag, on the shirt, on the hat, on the phone cover.
If each one desires me differently, they all shower me with gifts. Did they find out I’m crazy about dark chocolate? By the truckload. If I post a picture where there is a certain trinket in the background? They invade my house with every shape, color and size. From Argentina to India, from Israel to Australia.
And how do you react?
“As a gentleman. Trying to never get the messages wrong. Positive, respectful, loving. Trying to never break hearts. Once in Spain I was even called by the daughters of an 80-year-old lady who was in love with me so that I could convince her to get treatment.”
Do you ever break down?
“When I encounter arrogance: it irritates me, it makes me impetuous. Just like a volcano. I prefer compliments to criticism.”
What do you do with the letters you receive?
“I read the ones I can, and I save them all. For safety’s sake, my mother, who’s putting together a museum of sorts, keeps them. My fans are mostly poetic, going through their lines I feel that they really love me.”
Tell us about your love.
“You know it, because everything is in plain sight, in the light of the sun. A loyal love, in which I take my responsibilities, as we have seen. I have great respect for her, for our relationship and confidentiality is our first promise: we communicate what concerns us, together “.
Is the wedding that everyone is talking about going to happen?
“If there is, those same people will all see it. Let’s keep the surprise on something.”
“To even talk about that, would be to take away the magic. I am one who acts without putting in a lot, without words. I follow the thrust, fast. What happens will be known, in all its beauty.”
What is beauty?
“It can be a dark thing that overshadows everything, but also one that illuminates and excites, a bit like the Bosphorus at night. Of course it is a title not only aesthetic that stands above and holds together the eyes, the brain and the other organs that beat. And a mechanism that doesn’t make mistakes: if your eyes are empty, you become empty all the same”.
“When you love, you don’t get scared. If you live in the present, you don’t have time for fear. And you don’t put yourself in a state of fear with your future, with the conditional, the possibilities, the fantasies. What would be the point of that? None really.”
What about madness?
“The path that I’ve taken has been the right path every time. Instinct is in the way of God”.
Do you believe?
“Providence and I talk to each other, we have a good relationship, and that’s the reason I never get sad. Just never. If one thing doesn’t come true, it means He’s just leaving room for another, more intense one”.
Quote on pictorial near women in green gown:
“Act, don’t think”: that’s how Can Yaman became the star that everyone wants. And now that Sanodokan has given him Italy and a girlfriend, he doesn’t stop: “When you love you don’t get scared”.
Quote on pictorial near legs in red gown:
“The women who follow me? Some a little obsessive, but most poetic. I understand from their letters that they really love me”
Mid page quote page 1:
A special friend revealed to me the secret of life: IT’S WISDOM THAT LEADS TO GOD. That’s how I learned the responsibility of study that makes you strong and free.
Mid page quote page 2:
Instinct has never fooled me. And IF YOU REALLY LIVE IN THE PRESENT, you have no time for fear. If one thing doesn’t come true, it’s just giving way to another more intense one.
Sandokan Box page 2:
The idea of producer Luca Bernabei: revive the Malaysian Pirates Cycle, the adventure novels of Emilio Salgari, by having Can Yaman play the Sanodkan role in a series written by Alessandro Sermoneta and Davide Lantieri. Shooting is scheduled to begin in the summer of 2021. Opposite: original cover of Salgari’s The Tigers of Mompracem. Publisher Antionio Donath, Genoa
Translated by can yaman international for clarity.