moderator: Ewgenij Gusiatynski
Andrey Konchalovskiy is a Russian director, screenwriter, and producer. A would-be pianist, he spent his youth practicing his scales at the prestigious Moscow Conservatory, though that was back in the 1960s. Like his brother, Nikita Mikhalkov, he decided to become a filmmaker instead. During his studies in Mikhail Romm's studio at the Gerasimov Institute of Cinematography, he met Andrei Tarkovsky, and would later work as a screenwriter on his films The Steamroller and the Violin (1960), Ivan's Childhood (1962), and Andrei Rublev (1966). He made his directorial debut with The First Teacher (1965), an adaptation of a novel by Chinghiz Aitmatov. This marked the beginning of his long flirtation with the Russian classics: he also adapted works by Turgenev (Home of the Gentry) and Chekhov (Uncle Vanya). After making the epic Siberiade (1978), which was very well received in Cannes, he decided to stay in the West, where he worked with Max von Sydow, Glenn Close, Nastassja Kinski, Whoopie Goldberg, and Sylvester Stallone. He returned to Russia in the early 1990s, and the films that he has made there, which are deeply embedded in the local context, have brought him recognition at festivals in Berlin (The Inner Circle), Cannes (Assia and the Hen with the Golden Eggs), and Venice (House of Fools, The Postman's White Nights).