Vasily Lanovoy

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Vasily Lanovoy
Василий Лановой
Vasiliy Lanovoy.jpg
Vasily Semyonovich Lanovoy

(1934-01-16) 16 January 1934 (age 85)
OccupationStage and film actor
Years active1954–present
Spouse(s)Tatiana Samoilova
Tamara Zyablova
Irina Kupchenko
HonoursPeople's Artist of the USSR (1985)
Hero of Labour of the Russian Federation (2019)

Vasily Semyonovich Lanovoy (Russian: Василий Семенович Лановой; born 16 January 1934) is a popular Soviet and Russian actor who works in the Vakhtangov Theatre, Moscow. He is also known as the President of Artek Festival of Films for Children. Lanovoy's honours include the KGB Prize, the Lenin Prize, and the title of People's Artist of the USSR.[1] In 2019, he received the title Hero of Labour of the Russian Federation.

Acting career[edit]

Lanovoy came to prominence through playing bold, dashing characters, combining heroic bravado with a sensitivity typical of Russian heroes, a tendency evident in many of his early features, such as A Certificate of Maturity (1954) and Pavel Korchagin (1956).

Lanovoy's many film roles from the 1960s include Anatole Kuragin in Sergei Bondarchuk's War and Peace and Count Vronsky in the screen version of Anna Karenina. By this time, he has tried to create complex psychological portraits of his characters.

However, he is best known for his roles in iconic 1970s World War II-themed films. Lanovoy portrayed Ivan Varavva, one of the main characters in the 1971 saga Officers which became a life-affirming film for the Soviet Army officers. He also played a supporting role of SS General Karl Wolff in the cult spy thriller TV-series Seventeen Moments of Spring (1973).

In 2000s, Lanovoy has appeared primarily in the roles of Soviet-era party bosses, such as Yuri Andropov in the 2005 TV series Brezhnev. In 2012 played the role of Cardinal Richelieu in Russian miniseries/movie The Three Musketeers.

Personal life[edit]

Lanovoy was born to a family of Ukrainian peasants. His parents, originally from the rural Odessa Oblast, escaped the famine to Moscow. However, the World War II Nazi/Romanian occupation caught little Vasily in southern Ukraine with his village relatives while his parents were evacuated to the Soviet rear as workers with a military-critical industrial company.

Lanovoy is married to Irina Kupchenko, herself a famous Soviet actress educated in Kiev. His first wife was another film star, Tatiana Samoilova, best known for her leading part in The Cranes Are Flying.

Political views[edit]

In 2014 he signed a petition supporting the actions of Vladimir Putin in the annexation of Crimea.[2] For this he was banned from entering Ukraine.[3] Crimea is since March 2014 under dispute by Russia and Ukraine.[4]

He was critical of the (late 2013 until early 2014) Ukrainian Euromaidan demonstrations, stating that the United States were using Ukrainians for their own political gain.[5][6]

Honours and awards[edit]

1971 - Best Actor of the year, by a poll of the Sovetsky Ekran magazine (for the film Officers)
1978 - People's Artist of the RSFSR
1980 - Lenin Prize - for participation in the documentary film The Great Patriotic War
1983 - KGB Award - for the film "Fight at the crossroads"
1984 - Prize of the USSR Ministry of Internal Affairs - for the film Proceed to Eliminate
1985 - People's Artist of the USSR
1994 - Order of Friendship of Peoples - for merits in development of theatrical art
2001 - Order of Honour
2004 - Order of Merit for the Fatherland, 4th class - for his great contribution to the development of theatrical art
2004 - Order of Merit, 3rd class (Ukraine) - for high professionalism and considerable contribution to the development of Russian-Ukrainian cultural relations
2008 - Order of Merit for the Fatherland, 3rd class - for his contribution to the development of domestic theatrical and cinematic arts, a multi-year social work
2008 - Special Prize of the President of Belarus "for preserving and developing traditions of spirituality in the cinema"
2009 - "Great Literary Prize of Russia" (Russian Writers' Union), the prize "For the benefit of Russia" for his outstanding contribution to the development of Russian culture
2010 - Tsarskoselskaya art prize
2019 - Hero of Labour of the Russian Federation

Selected filmography[edit]


  1. ^ "Биография Василия Ланового". RIA Novosti.
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-03-11. Retrieved 2014-03-11. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ SBU issues entry ban against 140 Russian artists, UNIAN (5 November 2016)
    Ukraine’s State Security Service bans 140 Russian cultural figures from entering country, TASS news agency (5 November 2016)
  4. ^ Gutterman, Steve. "Putin signs Crimea treaty, will not seize other Ukraine regions". Reuters. Retrieved 2014-03-26.
  5. ^
  6. ^

External links[edit]