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Friday March 5th 2021

Topkapi | 1964

Topkapi filming location: Topkapi Palace, Istanbul, Turkey
Topkapi location: Topkapi Palace, Istanbul, Turkey | Photograph: Wikimedia / G Dallorto

After being blacklisted by Hollywood in the 1950s, director Jules Dassin relocated to Europe, where he went on to invent the heist movie with Rififi in 1955.

He revisits the genre with a glossier and more colourful caper as a mismatched group of experts attempt to steal a priceless dagger from the Topkapi Palace Museum in Istanbul.

The vast complex was built during the 15th and 16th centuries as the main residence and administrative headquarters of the Ottoman sultans.

After the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, in 1924 the palace was transformed into a museum, and is now administered by Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

Much of the movie was filmed around the Palace grounds but the interior was recreated in the studio.