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Yevgeny Yakovlevich Vesnik (Russian: Евге́ний Я́ковлевич Ве́сник; January 15, 1923 — April 10, 2009) was a Russian and Soviet stage and a film actor. The son of Yakov Vesnik, the first director of the Kryvorizhstal plant, he fought the Germans in the Second World War. He worked at the Maly Theatre from 1963 and was named a People's Artist of the USSR in 1989, three years before his retirement from the stage.
Primarily a comedian, Vesnik is remembered as the first Soviet actor to play the character of Ostap Bender. After he was remembered as Teatcher Taratar, or Tarator in The Adventures of the Elektronic (1979), one of greatest Soviet films for children.
Among his other roles are the policeman (miliceman) in Old Khottabych, "Boss of Sport Complex" in Seven Old Men and One Girl, the Procurator in Bat, the commissioner in Charodey (1982), "radist" in Weather Is Good on Deribasovskaya, It Rains Again on Brighton Beach and many other films.
He died, aged 86, on April 10, 2009 in Moscow after suffering a stroke.
Honours and awards
- Order of Merit for the Fatherland 4th class
- Order of the Red Banner of Labour (USSR)
- Order of Friendship of Peoples (USSR)
- Order of the Patriotic War 2nd class (USSR)
- Order of the Red Star (USSR)
- Medal "For the Victory over Germany in the Great Patriotic War 1941–1945" (USSR)
- Two Medals "For Courage" (USSR)
- Medal "For the Capture of Königsberg" (USSR)
- Medal "Veteran of Labour" (USSR)
- Medal "In Commemoration of the 800th Anniversary of Moscow" (USSR)
- Jubilee Medal "50 Years of the Armed Forces of the USSR" (USSR)
- Medal of Zhukov
- People's Artist of the USSR
- Honoured Artist of the RSFSR
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