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 Leonid Bykov


Born:   December 12, 1928
Deceased:   April 11, 1979

Soviet film director, screenwriter, actor

      

 Leonid Fedorovich Bykov was born on December 12, 1928 in the Znamensky Village of Donetsk Region in Ukraine. Since childhood he dreamed of aviation and tried to enter pilot schools twice. First time he failed – the fact that he added a few years to his age was exposed; but second time he was a success and entered the Leningrad special school for pilots in 1945. He studied for a month, but the war was already finishing and the school was closed. Then Leonid Bykov decided to become an actor, and entered the Kharkov Theatre Institute. After graduation he worked at Taras Shevchenko Theater in Kharkov from 1951 to 1960 worked.

He debuted as a film actor Marina's Destiny in 1952. The film became popular and attracted viewers’ and film-directors’ attention to the young actor. In 1954 the film directors Alexander Ivanovsky and Nadezhda Kosheverova invited Leonid Bykov to play the role of Petya Mokin in the Tiger Girl. His next role was the lead in Maksim Perepelitsa, which gained him love of the viewers at once. Leonid Bykov's best roles in cinema include Bogatyryov in My dear person, (1958), Akishin in Volunteers (1958), Aleshka in Aleshka’s Love (1961), and Garkusha in On Seven Winds (1962). 
 
After the release of Aleshka’s Love Leonid Bykov moved to Leningrad, where he got an opportunity to try his wings at film direction: his full-length debut was the comedy Little Hare (1965) where Leonid Bykov also played the leading. The film, however, turned to be not very successful. What followed was far from the best stage in his life and creative career: he was not given chances to direct films and was not much into filming as an actor either. Soon he moved back to Ukraine, where the talented actor also failed to find work. Eventually, in 1972 Bykov started shooting the film, which was destined to become one of the best films about the Great Patriotic War in the Soviet cinema – Only Old Men Are Going to Battle. In this film Leonid Bykov played the leading role of a squadron commander Titarenko. In 1977 the film director released one more film about the war – One-Two, Soldiers Were Going......, in which he also played one of roles – that of corporal Svyatkin. After two stunning films about the war Leonid Bykov decided to direct the sci-fi film Alien and started the shooting in 1978. 

Unfortunately, on April 11, 1979 Leonid Bykov perished in a car accident near Kiev. 

 
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