Elia Kazan was an American actor, screenwriter, director, and producer. Widely regarded as one of the most influential and celebrated directors in Hollywood and Broadway history, Kazan played a key role in launching the careers of actors like Marlon Brando, Warren Beatty, and James Dean. His work has also influenced other prominent filmmakers like Martin Scorsese.
The fourth son of Emperor Manuel II, Constantine XI Palaiologos was the last Byzantine emperor. He died in combat, while defending the city of Constantinople against the Ottoman Turks. In Greek folklore, he is known as the Marble Emperor, referring to a legend that he had turned into marble after his death.
French actor and musician Tchéky Karyo is best known as Julien Baptiste from the series The Missing and its spin-off, Baptiste. His performance in La Balance earned him a Cesar Award nomination. He has also appeared in character roles in films such as Kiss of the Dragon and The Patriot.
Orhan Pamuk is a Turkish novelist, screenwriter, and academic. He is the recipient of the 2006 Nobel Prize in Literature. One of the best-known writers from Turkey, he has sold over 13 million books in 63 languages. He began writing in the 1970s and is the author of several novels and non-fiction works in both English and Turkish.
Mahmud II reigned as the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1808 to 1839. His reign was marked by the extensive military, administrative, and fiscal reforms which he initiated. The reforms that he initiated eventually led to the formation of the modern Turkish Republic. He is also credited with rebuilding a strong naval force for the empire.
German business tycoon Dieter Zetsche had just completed his education in electrical engineering when he joined the research department of Daimler-Benz AG. He later headed the Mercedes-Benz Group as its CEO and also appeared as Dr. Z in the company’s commercials. He also served as the chairman of the tourism company TUI AG.
Ancient Byzantine emperor Justinian II was the son of Constantine IV and an efficient ruler, though he was also known for his cruel ways and means. He was also known as Rhinotmetos, or the slit-nosed, after his nose was cut off during a revolt in 695, following which he was banished from the kingdom.
The 32nd sultan of the Ottoman Empire, Abdülâziz was the son of Mahmud II. An admirer of Western ways, he became the first sultan to travel to Western Europe. He was also a talented composer. He was deposed and died of suicide a few days later, though many believe he was assassinated.