Thursday, 11 June 2009

Sergei Bondarchuk

Actor-director Sergei Bondarchuk (R) during the filming of "War & Peace."

Outstanding film director and brilliant actor Sergei Bondarchuk (1920 – 1994) underwent breath-taking, almost improbable rises in his life as well as dizzy failures and disappointments in the end.

Sergei Bondarchuk was born in 1920 in a Ukrainian settlement. At the age of 17 he first appeared on stage. Bondarchuk was already studying at a drama school in Rostov when the war broke out. Then there was battle-front life – in Grozny, Armavir, and Mozdok.

In 1948 he played his first role in “The The Young Guard” (aka Molodaya Gvardia) film, which became his diploma work.

In 1952 Stalin praised actor Bondarchuk for his role in ‘Taras Shevchenko’, and the day after it the actor was conferred on the title of the People’s Artist of the USSR (the highest title people normally got after dozens of years of creative work). In spite of the fact, Bondarchuk would always expand or even sweep away the limitations the communist leaders put for the Soviet cinema.

It is worth mentioning that Bondarchuk’s acting in ‘Taras Shevchenko’ got international acclaim as well – he was awarded at the festival in Karlovy Vary. His debut as a film director was not less successful: the movie ‘Fate of a Man’ (aka Sudba cheloveka (1959)) about a Russian soldier going through the Second World War brought him the Grand-Prix of the Moscow International Film Festival. More...

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Gavriil Yegiazarov: The Hot Snow - Горячий снег (1972)

Hot Snow (1972)

Director: Gavriil Yegiazarov
Starring: George Zhzhyonov, Anatoly Kuznetsov, Boris Tokarev.

Based on the novel by Yuri Bondarev.
Battle of Stalingrad - the beginning of radical change in the Great Patriotic War. Panzer General Manstein armada rushing to the rescue encircled troops of Field Marshal von Paulus, opposes Army General Bessonov. The main shock took over the artillery battery Drozdovskoye battalion, consisting of recent graduates of military academies, has not fired in combat. After a fierce battle on battery power left one gun and a few half-dead men. But the enemy did not work.

Aleksandr Abdulov Biography

was born on May 29, 1953 in Tobolsk in theatrical family - his father was the director of theatre in Fergana. Though Abdulov has first entered theater stage, when he was five years old, he did not aspire to actor's career. At school he was into sports, and fond of music. At the insisting of his father, after school he tried to enter Theater School of Schepkin, but it is unsuccessful, therefore, having returned from Moscow, has successfully passed examinations for sports faculty of a local teacher's college. Nevertheless, next year Alexander Abdulov again goes to Moscow and gets into ГИТИС, for the course of I.M. Rayevsky. Actor's film debute in 1974, while still a student, he played a small role of commando Kozlov in Michael Ptashuk's movie "About Vitya, Masha and sea infantry". In 1975 Abdulov's role in student play was noted by the main director of the Moscow theatre of Lenin's Komsomol (Ленком) Mark Zaharov, he has invited the young actor to be in his troupe. Since then Alexander Abdulov's name is inextricably related with Zaharov's theatre. Among Abdulov's most known theatrical works - a role in well-known "LENKOM" theater performance in "Unona and Avos". For the role in play "Barbarian and heretic" he has received Crystal Turandot award and fund of Stanislavsky's prize. In the middle of 70s movie career of the young actor took off as well. However wide popularity has come to Alexander Abdulov only after a role of the Bear in television film "Ordinary miracle" (1978), directed by Mark Zaharov based on Evgenie Schwarz's play of the same name. More...

Pavel Lungin - Biography

His very first film “Taxi-Blues” released in 1990 came as a true revelation and a subject of controversy and slam-bang discussion; it was marked with the special prize of the Cannes film festival. His recent work, “The Island”, a most piercing drama, cannot but leave a lasting impression. Pavel Lungin is a well-known Russian film-director for some reasons dwelling in Paris.

Pavel Semyonovich Lungin was born in Moscow on July 12, 1949. His mother, Liliana Lungina, is famous for her brilliant Russian translations of Astrid Lindgren’s books. His father, Semyon Lungin, a well-known script-writer, wrote scenarios (with his co-author Ilya Nusinov) for such popular movies as Agoniya (Agony, 1981), Vnimanie, cherepakha! (Attention, Turtle! 1970), Dobro pozhalovat (Welcome, or No Trespassing, 1964), and others. More...

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