Born in İstanbul, Zeynep Atakan graduated from the Department of Film and Television at the Faculty of Fine Arts at Marmara University. From 1986 to 1999, she worked in various roles in the television advertisement industry and specialized as a producer. After 1994, she continued her work at the company she co-founded.
In 1999, Atakan transitioned to the film industry and started producing international film projects. In 2007, she started Zeynofilm, a company dedicated to producing film projects.
In 2010, Atakan was awarded the European Film Academy’s Best European Co-Producer award. The same year, she launched the Yapımlab Workshops, with which she aims to share her experience and knowledge as a producer with young filmmakers.
Zeynep Atakan is still the Vice President of EWA, the European Women’s Audiovisual Network, which works towards equal opportunities for women working in the audiovisual industries in Europe and around the world.
In 2014, Atakan was awarded the Uçan Süpürge Bilge Olgaç Achievement Award, and her production Winter Sleep won the Palme d’Or at the 67th Cannes Film Festival, the festival’s most prestigious award.
Also in 2014, Zeynep Atakan started the Antalya Film Forum, a co-production and project development market organized as part of the International Antalya Film Festival and was its director until 2018. Atakan also organizes the Turkey section of the Young Audience Award, a project by the European Film Academy.
She is the art director of the Sabancı Foundation Short Film Platform.
Atakan is a member of Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science (AMPAS), European Film Academy and the Asia Pacific Screen Academy.
- 2019 It Must Be Heaven, Director: Elia Suleiman (as a coproducer)
- 2018 Wild Pear Tree, Director: Nuri Bilge Ceylan
- 2014 Winter Sleep, Director: Nuri Bilge Ceylan
- 2011 Once Upon A Time in Anatolia, Director: Nuri Bilge Ceylan
- 2008 Three Monkeys, Director: Nuri Bilge Ceylan
- 2006 Climates, Director: Nuri Bilge Ceylan
- 2002 Innowhereland, Director: Tayfun Pirselimoglu
- 1999 Lola+Bilidikid, Director: Kutlug Ataman
- AMPAS (Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science)
- EFA (European Film Academy)
- APSA (Asia Pacific Screen Academy)
- EWA (European Women’s Audiovisual Network) – Vice President