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Dark Eyes (Italian: Oci ciornie; Russian: Очи чёрные óchi chjórnyje) is a 1987 Italian and Russian language film which tells the story of a 19th-century married Italian who falls in love with a married Russian woman. It stars Marcello Mastroianni and Yelena Safonova.[1]

Dark Eyes
Dark Eyes.jpg
Film poster
Directed byNikita Mikhalkov
Produced byCarlo Cucchi
Silvia D'Amico Bendico
Written byAlexander Adabashyan
Nikita Mikhalkov
Suso Cecchi d'Amico
Anton Chekhov (stories)
StarringMarcello Mastroianni
Marthe Keller
Yelena Safonova
Pina Cei
Vsevolod Larionov
Innokenti Smoktunovsky
Music byFrancis Lai
CinematographyFranco Di Giacomo
Edited byEnzo Meniconi
Distributed byRUSCICO
Release date
9 September 1987
Running time
118 minutes
Soviet Union
LanguageItalian / Russian / French



One day, on board a steamer, Romano (Marcello Mastroianni), a middle-aged Italian, tells to a Russian man the story of his life. He narrates his encounter with a young Russian lady with dark beautiful eyes, their brief romantic interlude and his sudden abandonment. Haunted by the memory of that lady, Romano travels to Russia to find her.

Source materialEdit

The film was adapted from (or rather inspired by) four Anton Chekhov's stories, notably The Lady with the Dog, by a Soviet-Italian team that included Alexander Adabashyan, Suso Cecchi d'Amico and Nikita Mikhalkov. The latter directed. The title refers to a famous Russian art song.



Principal shooting took place at the Montecatini Terme in Tuscany, in the Volga town of Kostroma, and in Leningrad (Vladimir Palace, Peter and Paul Fortress).


Mastroianni received the award for Best Actor at the 1987 Cannes Film Festival[2] and was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor. Safonova was awarded the David di Donatello as Best Actress. Costume Designer Carlo Diappi was awarded the Ciak d'oro (Golden Ciak).[3]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "NY Times: Dark Eyes". NY Retrieved 2009-04-01.
  2. ^ "Festival de Cannes: Dark Eyes". Retrieved 2009-07-19.
  3. ^

External linksEdit