Roman Balayan

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Roman Balayan
Roman Balayan 1.jpg
Balayan in 2014
Roman Gurgenovich Balayan

(1941-04-15) 15 April 1941 (age 81)
OccupationFilm director

Roman Gurgenovich Balayan (Armenian: Ռոման Գուրգենի Բալայան, Russian: Рома́н Гурге́нович Балая́н; born 15 April 1941, Nerkin Horatagh, Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Oblast, Soviet Union[1]) is a Ukrainian-Armenian film director.

In 1997 Balayan was awarded the title People’s Artist of Ukraine.[2]


Balayan worked as an actor in the theater of Stepanakert (located in the Nagorno-Karabakh region) in 1959–1961. He studied directing at the Yerevan State Institute of Theatre and Cinematography and film directing at the Kyiv National I. K. Karpenko-Kary Theatre, Cinema and Television University, graduating in 1969. Since 1970, he has worked at the Dovzhenko Film Studios in Kiev.[2]

Balayan calls himself a student of Sergei Parajanov. He was nominated and won several international prizes.

He is well-known for his literary adaptations; authors whom Balayan has adapted for the screen are Anton Chekhov (Kashtanka, 1975; The Kiss, 1983, TV), Ivan Turgenev (The Lone Wolf, 1977; First Love, 1995), and Nikolai Leskov (Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District, 1989).

His film Flights in Dreams and Reality (1982), a drama about depression and a midlife crisis, is one of his most well-known works. Oleg Yankovsky portrays a creative man in his 40s who feels alienated in society. At the time of its release, politically minded viewers perceived it as a critique of Brezhnevian “stagnation”.[2]

His 1986 film Guard Me, My Talisman was entered into the main competition at the 43rd edition of the Venice Film Festival[3] and won the Golden Tulip at the 1987 International Istanbul Film Festival.[4] His 1977 film Lone Wolf was entered into the 28th Berlin International Film Festival[5] and his 2008 film Birds of Paradise was shown at the 30th Moscow International Film Festival.[6] In 2018 he announced, that he may be shooting his next film in Ukrainian language.[7]



  1. ^ Bareyan at IMDB
  2. ^ a b c Peter Rollberg (2016). Historical Dictionary of Russian and Soviet Cinema. US: Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 78–79. ISBN 1442268425.
  3. ^ VV.AA. Variety Film Reviews, Volume 19. Garland Pub., 1989.
  4. ^ Peter Cowie. Variety International Film Guide. Tantivy Press, 1989.
  5. ^ " Awards for Lone Wolf". Retrieved August 6, 2010.
  6. ^ "30th Moscow International Film Festival (2008)". MIFF. Archived from the original on April 21, 2013. Retrieved June 2, 2013.
  7. ^ Novaya Gazeta

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