Eldar Riazanov

Riazanov, El’dar Aleksandrovich


Born Nov. 18, 1927, in Samara, now the city of Kuibyshev. Soviet writer and motion-picture director and playwright. People’s Artist of the RSFSR (1974).

In 1950, Riazanov graduated from the department of direction of the All-Union State Institute of Cinematography, where he studied in G. M. Kozintsev’s workshop. He worked at the Central Documentary Film Studio and subsequently at Mosfil’m. In 1955 he codirected with S. N. Gurov the concert-revue Voices of Spring.

Since then, Riazanov has been directing comedies. The first work in this genre was the bright, festive, and satirical musical comedy Carnival Night (1956). Riazanov coauthored novellas and scenarios with E. V. Braginskii; he based the following motion pictures on these works: the tragicomedy Look Out for the Car (1966), which was one of the best films he directed, The Zigzag of Success (1969), The Old Robbers (1972), and The Extraordinary Adventures of Italians in Russia (1973), a joint Soviet-Italian venture. He also made films based on the scenarios of other authors, including A Girl Without an Address (1958) and Give Me the Book of Complaints (1965). In 1962, Riazanov made the heroic comedy The Hussar Ballad, the scenario of which he wrote in collaboration with A. K. Gladkov. Riazanov and Braginskii jointly wrote the plays Hope You Had a Good Bath (1969), The Colleagues (1972), and The Relatives (1973).