Thursday, 21 February 2013
Alexei German - Biography
Born: 20 June 1938 - Deceased: 21 February 2013
The Russian film director Alexei German is one of the most authoritative masters in contemporary cinema. The director’s focus on the issues of history and time reveals itself in the two most evident peculiarities of his films: they are almost all black-and-white, like the newsreels of the 1930-50s; in each of them German resorts to a method rarely used in cinema – a character’s look straight into the camera directly connects the viewer with the screen world.
Alexei Georgievich German was born on 20 June 1938 in Leningrad, into the family of the famous writer Yuri German (1910–1967).
In 1955-1960 Alexei studied at the direction faculty of the Leningrad State Theatre and Music Institute, in the workshop of the well-known film director Grigori Kozintsev.
Alexei German’s graduation work was the first part of stage play Obyknovennoye chudo(Ordinary Wonder) by Yevgheny Schwartz with Sergei Yursky as King. When Georgy Tovstonogov saw the production he invited German to work as a film-director in the Bolshoi Drama Theater named after Gorky. Alexei worked there from 1961 to 1964.
In 1964 he turned to cinema working at Lenfilm studio as the second film director of the feature Rabochiy posyolok (Workers' Quarters) (1965) by Vladimir Vengerov. In 1967 together with Grigori Aronov he directed Sedmoy sputnik (The Seventh Companion) (1967). is next film under the title Proverka na dorogakh (Checkpoint) (1971) starring Rolan Bykov and Anatoli Solonitsyn was banned by communist authorities and was not released until 1985.