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News

60 Years Ago “The Fate of a Man” was Filmed

18.07.2018

60 years ago, during the whole year 1958, “The Fate of a Man” was being filmed based on the title story by M.A.Sholokhov. It was the first work of the film director Sergey Bondarchuk and received a warm response from the audience.

It was one of the first Soviet films about the Great Patriotic War, where a Russian soldier went through the infernal torment of the concentration camp, survived and defended his right to be a man, and retained his ability to love.

The main role of Andrey Sokolov was played by the film director himself. The role of Vanyushka was acted by five-year-old Pavlik Boriskin. Zinaida Kiriyenko, Yury Averin, Pavel Volkov, Lev Borisov and other actors performed in the film.

The film was made in different places: the meeting of Sokolov and Vanyushka was shot at the River Don near Stanitsa Vyoshenskaya, the episodes of Sokolov’s prewar life were made in Voronezh, the fight of Sokolov and the fascist pilot was shot in Tambov, the quarry of the fascist concentration camp – in the Rostov Region, around Kamensk-Shakhtinsky, arrival of the echelons with prisoners at the train station – in Kaliningrad.

M.A.Sholokhov showed in his story “The Fate of a Man” an incredible strength and spirit of the Soviet man. In a laconic form he managed to create an epic in miniature by the force of his talent. And Bondarchuk managed to convey the idea of the story, the feelings of the author and the suffering experienced by the millions of Soviet people during the terrible years of the war.

In 1959, the film was shown in “Mosfilm”. In the centre of a small hall there was Sholokhov and his family. The script writer F.Shakhmagonov recalled, that when the demonstration was over, the writer said good-bye somehow coldly to S.Bondarchuk and operator V.Monakhov, and left the hall. Afterwards, in the car, he was silent, then said in a low voice: “Sergey is ruthless. Tell him my words. Ruthless, or maybe it was to be done so. I still cannot come to my senses – tears are choking me…”

For long years “The Fate of a Man” has been keeping the readers and viewers indifferent, and both the story and the film have gained the world recognition.

The premiere of the film took place on April 12, 1957. It was recognized the best film of 1959 by the readers of the magazine “Sovetsky Ekran” and was

awarded the main prizes of a number of international film festivals. And S.Bondarchuk and V.Monakhov were awarded the Lenin Prize.

 

Yana Kosheleva