Yevgeny Samoylov

Yevgeny Valerianovich Samoilov (Russian: Евгений Валерианович Самойлов) (16 April 1912 in St. Petersburg – 17 February 2006 in Moscow) was a Soviet actor who gained prominence in youthful heroic parts and was named a People's Artist of the USSR in 1974. He was the father of Tatiana Samoilova.

Yevgeny Samoilov
Евгений Самойлов
Yevgeny Samoilov in 1997
Yevgeny Valerianovich Samoilov

(1912-04-16)April 16, 1912
DiedFebruary 17, 2006(2006-02-17) (aged 93)
Resting placeVagankovo Cemetery
Moscow, Russia
ChildrenTatiana Samoilova
Alexander Samoilov


Samoilov is not related to the famous Samoilov family that dominated the Maly Theatre in the 19th century. He was educated in Leningrad, starting his career at a local theatre. In 1934 he was noticed by Vsevolod Meyerhold who invited him to join his own troupe in Moscow. Samoilov worked with Meyerhold for four years. He got his most substantial roles in Meyerhold's theatre playing Hernani in Hugo's drama and Chatsky in Woe from Wit.

When Meyerhold was arrested and purged in 1938, Samoilov was in the middle of rehearsing for Pushkin's Boris Godunov (the role of Grigory Otrepyev) and Ostrovsky's How the Steel Was Tempered (the role of Pavka Korchagin). His acting career seemed to be unhampered, however. Samoilov's appearance as the Soviet commander Shchors in Alexander Dovzhenko's film of the same name won him the Stalin Prize for 1941. He proceeded to become an iconic film actor of the Joseph Stalin era, playing against Lyubov Orlova in Bright Path and Marina Ladynina in Six O'Clock in the Evening after the War (1944 film; 1946 Stalin Prize). One of his favourite film roles was that of General Skobelev in The Heroes of Shipka (1955).

After the Meyerhold theatre was disbanded, Samoilov moved to Nikolay Okhlopkov's Mayakovsky Theatre, where he would work until the director's death in 1967. His role of Oleg Koshevoy in the first stage version of The Young Guard won him another Stalin Prize. One of the highlights of his career was Hamlet in Okhlopkov's production of 1954. It was the first post-war production of the play in the country and led to Okhlopkov's joint work with Peter Brook. In 1961, he was cast as Jason in the first-ever Russian production of Medea by Euripides. Six years later, he appeared in the role opposite Aspasia Papathanassiou of Greece.

In 1967 Samoilov rejoined his colleagues from the Meyerhold Theatre in the Maly Theatre. The greatest success of his declining years was the role of Prince Ivan Shuisky in Tsar Fyodor Ioannovich (1973). "It was a genuine Christian man, living in Christ; I have never seen anything like this", says Georgy Sviridov, who composed music for the production. Samoilov's last film roles came in the movies directed by Sergei Bondarchuk, such as Waterloo and Boris Godunov. The actor celebrated his 90th birthday acting on the stage of the Maly Theatre in 2002.

Partial filmographyEdit

  • Accidental Meeting (1936) - Grigoriy Rybin
  • Tom Soyer (1936) - Doctor Robinzon
  • Shchors (1939) - Nikolay Shchors
  • V poiskakh radosti (1940) - Kirill Zhdarkin
  • Tanya (1940) - Aleksei Nikolaevich Lebedev
  • Four Hearts (1941) - Don Pablo (segment "Nebo i ad" / "Heaven and Hell")
  • Invisible Jan (1942) - Jani
  • Is kidev dabrundeba (1943)
  • David Bek (1944) - Kasyanov
  • Six P.M. (1944) - Lieutenant Vasili Ivanovich Kudryashev
  • Four Hearts (1945) - First Lieutenant Pyotr Nikitich Kolchin
  • Sinegoriya (1946) - Amalgama
  • Admiral Nakhimov (1947) - Lt. Burunov
  • Novyy dom (1947) - Captain Ivan Veshnyak
  • Malchik s okrainy (1948) - Andrey Skvortsov
  • Boy from the Outskirts (1948) - father of Andrey
  • Sud chesti (1949) - Nikolay
  • Taras Shevchenko (1951) - Nikolay Aleksandrovich Speshnev
  • The Unforgettable Year 1919 (1951) - Nekhlyudov's son
  • Adventure in Odessa (1953) - Nikolay Yefanov, otets Gleba
  • Heroes of Shipka (1955) - Gen. Skobolov
  • Krushenie emirata (1955) - M. V. Frunze
  • Neokonchennaya povest (1955) - Aleksandr Aganin
  • K Chyornomu moryu (1957) - Konstantin Aleksandrovich Kokhlov
  • Oleko Dundich (1958) - Bodrov
  • Zare navstrechu (1960) - Savych
  • Bessonnaya noch (1960) - Pavel's father
  • Lyudi moey doliny (1961) - Yevgeniy Burchak
  • Parqi oghakner (1962) - Vasilyev
  • The Alive and the Dead (1964)
  • The Enchanted Desna (1964) - Colonel Aleksandr Petrovich
  • Waterloo (1970) - Cambronne
  • Zvyozdy ne gasnut (1971) - G.V. Chicherin
  • Krusheniye imperii (1971) - Savva Abramovich Petrushin
  • Dlinnaya doroga v korotkiy den (1972) - Mikhail Petrovich
  • They Fought for Their Country (1975) - Marchenko
  • Boris Godunov (1986) - monk Pimen
  • Caccia alla vedova (1991) - Priest
  • V nachale bylo slovo (1992) - Father Superior (final film role)

Honours and awardsEdit


Further readingEdit

  • N. Barskaya. Ye. V. Samoilov. Moscow, 1951.

External linksEdit