Turkish cinema and TV series have really taken off in the last couple of years, and it’s given the world some cinematic gems like Erkenci Kuş (Daydreamer) and Bir Zamanlar Anadolu’da (Once Upon a Time in Anatolia). And let’s not forget the addictive TV drama series the country is known for producing – Dirilis: Ertugruland Shahmaranbeing two of the most popular.
Many of the films and series’ successes owe to the great Turkish actors and actresses that bring the characters vividly to life. Male Turkish actors such as Burak Özçivit, Kerem Bürsin, and Aras Bulut Iynemli have earned a special place in the hearts of viewers.
In no particular order, here are 20 of the most famous Turkish actors of all time! Let us know what you think about the list in the comments!
Who Are The Most Handsome and Famous Turkish Actors?
1. Burak Özçivit
- Born: 24 December, 1984
- Number of Instagram Followers: 23.3 million
First on the list of the most famous Turkish actors is Istanbul-born Burak Özçivit; he is perhaps most well-known for his portrayal of the character Kamran in the television series Çalıkuşu between 2013 and 2014, and most famously as Kemal in the hit drama series Kara Sevda – a role for which he received worldwide praise.
He was propelled into the spotlight when he won the Top Model of Turkey competition in 2003, but it wasn’t until 2006 that he landed his first role in Eksi 18, a crime TV series. Özçivit later went on to star as Çet (aka Chuck Bass) in Küçük Sırlar – the Turkish Adaptation of the smash US series Gossip Girl. This actor model has also appeared in the horror movie Musalla, released in 2007.
Burak is married to the beautiful Turkish actress Fahriye Evcen, and the couple has two sons together. Burak Ozcivit is also the most follow Turkish actor on Instagram and other social media platforms.
2. Can Yaman
- Born: November 8, 1989
- Number of Instagram Followers: 10.1 million
Can Yaman is an award-winning Turkish actor who received a Golden Butterfly Award in 2018 and a Murex d’Or award for portraying Can Divit in the popular TV series Erkenci Kuş.
He is one of the most attractive male actors on Turkish TV screens and has appeared in Bay Yanlış (aka Mr. Wrong), for which he was nominated for the award for Best Actor in Foreign Series at LATAM PRODU 2020. As well as that, this lead actor has starred in İnadına Aşk, Dolunay, and Hangimiz Sevmedik.
Can Yaman’s career have humble beginnings with the start of it in Gönül İşleri in 2014. It wasn’t until several series later did his breakthrough come in 2017 with the series Dolunay.
3. Kıvanç Tatlıtuğ
- Born: 27 October 1983
- Number of Instagram Followers: 4.1 million
As one of the highest-paid actors in Turkey, ıvanç Tatlıtuğ has an estimated fortune of $15 million, making him one of the richest and most famous Turkish actors of all time. Throughout his career, Tatlıtuğ has won many awards, including a Yeşilçam Cinema Award for his role in the movie Butterfly’s Dream and three Golden Butterfly Awards.
He is a well-established actor and one of the most recognizable faces in Turkey, having appeared in several successful television series such as Menekşe ile Halil, Aşk-ı Memnu, Kuzey Güney, and Cesur ve Güzel. Most recently, he has appeared in Into the Night, a Netflix Turkish series and apocalyptic thriller Yakamoz S-245.
4. Çağatay Ulusoy
- Born: 23 September 1990
- Number of Instagram Followers: 8.2 million
Another leading Turkish actor is Istanbul-born Çağatay Ulusoy, who began his acting career in 2011 in the dramatic TV series Adını Feriha Koydum which received worldwide acclaim and particularly appealed to a younger audience.
Ulusoy also starred in the remake of the popular American series The O.C., known to Turkish audiences as Medcezir. He also played the leading role in The Protector, a Netflix series.
Other notable roles for Çağatay Ulusoy include the TV series Bensu Soral which is loosely based on the famed movie The Departed, the TV series İçerde, Paper Lives on Netflix, and the short film Paranoia.
He was also awarded GQ Middle East TV Star of the Year in 2019!
5. Engin Akyürek
- Born: 12 October 1981
- Number of Instagram Followers: 1.8 million
Engin Akyürek is one of the highest-paid Turkish actors, and he is widely regarded as one of the most successful. His portrayal of the character Omer in the detective series Kara Para Aşk catapulted him to worldwide fame. And he was nominated for an Emmy and won the Best Actor award at the Seoul International Drama Awards for the role in 2015.
The turning point for Akyürek was when he appeared on Türkiye’nin Yıldızları (Turkey’s Stars). And while he appears mainly on the small screen in TV series such as Fatmagül’ün Suçu Ne?, Kara Para Aşk, and Sefirin Kızı, he has also landed roles in the brilliant Turkish film Kader as well as Bi Küçük Eylül Meselesi.
6. Seyit Alp Navruz
- Born: January 15 1990
Being cast in stage shows during his primary school years cemented Seyit Alp Navruz’s love for Turkish cinema. Navruz made his debut on the big screen in 2015 with a lead role in the horror movie Ceberrut; he then moved on to the TV series Aşk Laftan Anlamaz.
Yet his breakthrough role was still to come, and his ‘career-defining moment’ came in 2017 when he was cast as Sinan Egemen in the popular Star TV drama series Fazilet Hanim ve kizlari; he received widespread praise for his acting, and it resulted in his first leading role in a TV series two years later in Elimi Bırakma.
Other noteworthy roles for Seyit Alp Navruz include Zümrüduanka (2020), Ada Masali (2021), and Yürek Çıkmazı (2022 and 2023).
7. Burak Deniz
- Born: February 17 1991
- Number of Instagram Followers: 6.4 million
There’s a fascinating story behind the famous Turkish actor Burak Deniz’s entry into the world of acting. While still in high school, Deniz attended an acting workshop, where he was discovered by well-known casting director Gökçe Doruk Erten.
Born in Istanbul in 1991, Burak Deniz is best known for playing Murat Sarsılmaz in the highly acclaimed TV series Aşk Laftan Anlamaz between 2016 and 2017. Also, starring in other Turkish TV series like Bizim Hikaye, Yarım Kalan Aşklar, and Maraşlı, it’s fair to say that Burak Deniz is a household name in Turkey. But he was cast onto the world stage in 2022 with his role as Asaf in Disney+ series The Ignorant Angels and the following year as Maran in the Netflix series Shahmaran.
8. İbrahim Çelikkol
- Born: February 14 1982
- Number of Instagram Followers: 2.4 million
Born in 1982 in Izmit, İbrahim Çelikkol is one of the most well-known Turkish actors. He has appeared in several Turkish films and TV series. In 2012 he won the Ekrem Bora Promising Actor Award at the Sadri Alisk Cinema awards ceremony for his role in Feith 1453. Çelikkol started out as a professional model and interestingly played for Turkey’s under-20 basketball team. His first role was that of Şamil in Pars: Narkoterör.
9. Engin Altan Düzyatan
- Born: 26 July 1979
- Number of Instagram Followers: 5.3 million
Engin Altan Düzyatan made his acting debut in 2001 in the smash hit Ruhsar, a fantasy series with a large fan base. A veteran actor, he has since starred in several Turkish series and films; his most notable performance, and one which garnered him international acclaim, was his role as Ertuğrul Bey in Diriliş: Ertuğrul.
In 2020, he was named one of the Most Influential Muslims in the World in 2020 by the publication The Muslim 500.
In 2005, he starred in the Turkish film Beyza’nın Kadınları, his next role was a challenge, but he received widespread praise for his portrayal of a mentally disabled character in Cennet in 2008.
10. Barış Arduç
- Born: 9 October 1987
- Number of Instagram Followers: 6.8 million
Born in Switzerland, Barış Arduç moved back to Istanbul with his family in his second year of high school. His first role was in 2011 in the TV series Küçük Hanımefendi, Dinle Sevgili, and Pis Yedili; it was a supporting role.More supporting roles followed, most memorably when he played Ahmet in Benim İçin Üzülme, an ATV series. Leading roles came later in 2015 when he was cast in Kiralik Ask, a popular rom-com series on Star TV. And the year prior, Arduç nabbed his first movie role in Sadece Sen. More recently (in 2021), Arduç played the role of Fıstık İsmail in the Netflix series, Kulüp.
11. Kerem Bürsin
- Born: 4 June 1987
- Number of Instagram Followers: 11.1 million
Kerem Bürsin is another famous Turkish actor, most well known for his portrayal of Kerem Sayer in the TV series Güneşi Beklerken. He has also starred in TV shows such as Şeref Meselesi and Sen Çal Kapımı. Best described as a nomad, Bürsin has lived in several countries, including UAE, Scotland, and the USA. And memorably, he starred in the well-received horror/science fiction movie Sharktopus in 2010.
Considered one of the most handsome Turkish actors, Bürsin has also appeared in the crowd-pleasing Turkish film Unutursam Fısılda, in which he played the role of a musician named Erhan.
12. Çağlar Ertuğrul
- Born: 5 November 1987
- Number of Instagram Followers: 3.3 million
Regarded as one of the best Turkish actors, Çağlar Ertuğrul garnered widespread praise for his acting in Turkish TV dramas. In fact, in 2021, he was awarded a Golden Butterfly Award for his portrayal of the character Serdar Kılıçarslan in Teşkilat. The previous year (2020), he won a Golden Butterfly for the role of Kerem in Afili Aşk.
Çağlar Ertuğrul’s first big break in the industry came in 2012 when he was cast in the leading role of the Turkish film Dağ; following his success in that role, he was given starring roles in movies like Bana Masal Anlatma as well as in the TV series Medcezir and Benim İçin Üzülme. But Çağlar truly stole the spotlight when he again played the leading role in Dağ 2 – the most-watched film in Turkey in 2016!
Read More: Best Turkish Movies on Netflix You Can’t Miss!
13. Akin Akinozu
- Born: 23 September 1990
- Number of Instagram Followers: 3.6 million
Considered one of the most handsome Turkish actors, Akın Akınözü was destined for a career in acting, considering his mother is famed actress Özlem Akınözü and his granduncle Süha Arın is referred to as “The Father of Turkish Documentaries!”
For his portrayal of the character Miran in the TV series Hercai, Akınözü was awarded Best Actor in a Dramatic Series at the 2019 Golden Lens Awards. The same year, Spanish TV station Nova awarded him two impressive awards – ‘Best Male Actor’ and ‘Mister Nova’! More recently (in 2021), he landed a leading role in the drama series Kaderimin Oyunu.
14. Haluk Bilginer
- Born: 5 June 1954
- Number of Instagram Followers: 430k
The Turkish actor Nihat Haluk Bilginer to this day remains best known for starring in the long-running hit UK drama series Eastenders, in which he played Mehmet Osman from 1985 to 1987. Often referred to as the “terrible Turk,” Bilginer was among the most famous Eastenders cast members in the 1980s.
He has also had minor roles in Hollywood movies such as the 1987 comedy movie Ishtar and the 2001 dark comedy Buffalo Soldiers. But most remarkably, for his role in Şahsiyet, Bilginer was awarded the Best Actor award at the International Emmy Awards in 2018.
15. Cengiz Coskun
- Born: 29 April 1982
- Number of Instagram Followers: 2.6 million
Famed for his excellent portrayal of the character Turgut Alp in the popular TV series Diriliş: Ertuğrul, Cengiz Coşkun is perhaps the most promising actor in Turkey. He began his career in 2005 in the TV series Rüzgarlı Bahçe and later went on to join the cast of Candan Öte, Doktorlar, and Hicran Yarası.
His movie debut came in 2012 when he was cast as Giovanni in Fetih 1453; other noteworthy roles for this handsome Turkish actor include the leading role of Seljuk Sultan Alp Arslan in the 2020 Turkish film Malazgirt 1071.
16. Halit Ergenç
- Born: 30 April 1970
- Number of Instagram Followers: 1.1 million
Another renowned Turkish actor is Halit Ergenç, the son of another great Turkish actor Mehmet Sait Ergenç. He is well-known for his portrayal of Sultan Suleiman I in the historical fiction TV series Muhteşem Yüzyıl. As well as that, he received widespread praise for his roles in the hit series Binbir Gece and Vatanim Sensin.
Two career-changing roles for Ergenç were the lead role in the movie Ali & Nino and in the 2016 Turkish film Vatanım Sensi which he starred in opposite his wife – Turkish actress Bergüzar Korel.
17. Aras Bulut Iynemli
- Born: 25 August 1990
- Number of Instagram Followers: 10.2 million
Aras Bulut Iynemli is a distinguished Turkish actor known for his excellent performances in TV series such as As Time Goes By, Magnificent Century, Insider, and The Pit. In fact, in 2017, this handsome Turkish actor won the Golden Butterfly Award for Best Actor for his performance in The Pit!
İynemli played the leading male character in the series Maral: En Güzel Hikayem, and he also went on to star in İçerde and Çukur. In 2019, he was cast as a mentally ill father wrongly imprisoned for murder in the Turkish drama film 7. Koğuştaki Mucize – a huge success in Turkey and worldwide when it was broadcast to a global audience via Netflix.
18. Tolga Saritas
- Born: 30 May 1991
- Number of Instagram Followers: 6.2 million
Promising Turkish actor Tolga Sarıtaş is famous in Turkey for his portrayal of the character Ali Mertoğlu in the popular TV series Güneşin Kızları and as Şehzade Cihangir in the historical drama series Muhteşem Yüzyıl. He is most renowned for his character Yavus in the successful drama Söz.
As well as the above, Sarıtaş has starred in Büyük Sürgün Kafkasya, a mini-historical series based on Meskhetian Turks and crime series Arıza. He has won numerous awards throughout his career, and in 2018 he was nominated for the Best Actor award at the International Emmy Awards.
19. Cem Yilmaz
- Born: 23 April 1973
- Number of Instagram Followers: 5.5 million
Cem Yilmaz has many accolades to his name; not only is he a famed Turkish actor, but he is also a musician, stand-up comedian, screenwriter, filmmaker, and cartoonist. As a screenwriter, he is most well-known for writing the 2004 Turkish film G.O.R.A. and its sequel A.R.O.G, released in 2008.
Cem starred in the Turkish comedy film Organize İşler in 2005 and The Magician in 2006. And he won two Sadri Alışık awards for his role in both movies. On the international screen, you may recognize Cem Yilmaz from the movie Water Diviner directed by and starring Russell Crowe, in which he played Sergeant Jemal.
20. Serkan Cayoglu
- Born: 31 May 1987
- Number of Instagram Followers: 4.5 million
And ending this list of the most famous Turkish actors is German-born Turkish actor Serkan Cayoglu, notorious for his roles in Kiraz Mevsimi, Yeni Hayat, and Halka.
He started his acting career in 2012 when he played the Italian friend of the main character in the season finale of the Turkish drama series Kuzey Güney. His most notable role is that of Ayaz in the popular TV series Kiraz Mevsimi.
Famous Turkish Actors FAQs
Who Is The Most Famous Male Turkish Actor?
There are many famous male Turkish actors, but the one with the most social following is Burak Özçivit. He is perhaps the most well-known actor from Turkey!
Who Are The Most Handsome Turkish Actors?
The most handsome Turkish Actors are Can Yaman, Burak Ozcivit, and Burak Celik.
That concludes the article on the 20 most famous actors in Turkey. Turkish TV and cinema industries have produced some of the most incredible talents in the world. What did you think of the list? Do you agree with us? Let us know in the comments!