Iakov Protazanov

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Protazanov, Iakov Aleksandrovich


Born Jan. 23 (Feb. 4), 1881, in Moscow; died there Aug. 8, 1945. Soviet film director. Honored Art Worker of the RSFSR (1935) and the Uzbek SSR (1943). One of the founders of Soviet cinematography.

Protazanov directed some 80 films between 1911 and 1918, including such important films as The Queen of Spades (1916) and Father Sergii (1918). Even at this time he displayed professional mastery, interest in the Russian literary classics, and sensitivity to the actor’s art. He was often compelled to direct commercial productions, but in his best films demonstrated the potentialities of the Russian cinema.

In 1923, after a stay abroad, Protazanov returned to Russia. For his first films made in Soviet studios, Aelita (1924) and His Call (1925), he chose themes from contemporary Soviet life. He also directed the comedies The Tailor From Torzhok (1925), The Trial of the Three Million (1926), Don Diego and Pelageia (1928), and Saint Jorgen’s Day (1930), which brilliantly displayed the talents of such popular performers as I. V. Il’inskii, V. P. Mar-etskaia, A. P. Ktorov, M. M. Klimov, and M. M. Bliumental’-Tamarina. In the historical revolutionary film The Forty-first (1927), Protazanov achieved great authenticity of characterization and successfully conveyed the atmosphere of the Civil War epoch. He engaged V. I. Kachalov and V. E. Meyerhold for the leading roles in The White Eagle (1928). With the advent of sound, he directed The Marionettes (1934), a satirical musical comedy, and later The Girl Without a Dowry (1937), which became one of the best Soviet screen versions of a classic play. The historical film Salavat Iulaev (1941) and the comedy Nasreddin in Bukhara (1943) were his last works.


Zorkaia, N. M. Portrety. Moscow, 1966.
Arlazorov, M. S. Protazanov. Moscow, 1973.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Articles include "The Swansong of Early Russian Cinema: Iakov Protazanov's Father Sergius (1918)," by Denise J.
Nevertheless, Widdis deserves much praise for her often impressive partial, local insights, best exemplified in her subtle and sustained readings of relatively little-known films such as the comedies of Iakov Protazanov and Boris Barnet, Grigoru Kozintsev and Leonid Trauberg's The Devil's Wheel, and Medvedkin's film-train shorts as well as his longer 19 30s comedies.
The leading directors of popular cinema Youngblood treats -- Iakov Protazanov, Boris Barnet, and Fridrikh Ermler -- came under fire for promoting bourgeois, western, and subjective values.
Figures such as Iakov Protazanov, making films before, during and after the revolution, reveal a degree of stability rarely recognized in conventional Soviet cultural histories.
For a long time it was customary to begin discussion of Tolstoy adaptations, and Russian literary adaptation in general, from the two classics that were produced in the twilight of pre-revolutionary cinema: Iakov Protazanov's Father Sergei (1918) and Aleksandr Sanin's Polikushka (1919/22).
Cine-Phono dedicated a special issue (Number 4, 1910) to Tolstoy and cinema, and the topic also surfaced two years later, when Iakov Protazanov filmed his famous semi-documentary on Tolstoy's death The Departure (or Passing) of a Great Old Man ([TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII], 1912).
9); the director Iakov Protazanov did not make a 'star' of Ivan Mozzhukhin in 1916 (p.