Director Todorovsky, breaker of Soviet taboos, dies at 87
MOSCOW - Agence France-Presse
Pyotr todorovsky's 1989 'Interdevochka', or 'Intergirl' portrayed the Russian women who sold their bodies to foreigners in exchange for dollars, to supplement their meagre income.Russian film director Pyotr Todorovsky, whose output ranged from war dramas to a sympathetic portrayal of the hard-currency prostitutes of the perestroika era, has died at 87, the Federation of Russian Cinematographers said May 24.
He died in Moscow after being hospitalised with pneumonia, Russian media reported. Todorovsky was born in Ukraine and was a decorated soldier in World War II before beginning his film career. His emotional melodramas shot in the 1980s brought him his greatest acclaim, striking a particular chord with women.
Breaching a Soviet-era taboo, his 1989 "Interdevochka", or International Girl, was the first to portray the growing trend for Russian women to supplement their meagre income by selling their bodies to foreigners in exchange for dollars.
The film, starring girl-next-door actress Yelena Yakovleva, became one of the most popular films of the perestroika or reform era in the mid-1980s, watched by 40 million viewers in cinemas.
Although not explicit by Western standards, the film's sex scenes were considered shocking at the time.
Yakovleva became Todorovsky's muse and appeared in many of his other films. She is now one of Russia's biggest stars.
"Now looking back at my life, I can say that the best thing that happened to me in films was Pyotr Yefimovich Todorovsky," she told Komsomolskaya Pravda daily.
His 1983 "Wartime Romance", about a troubled reunion between a couple who enjoyed a wartime encounter, was another popular hit that won an Oscar nomination. Todorovsky's son Valery is also a film director who made a 2008 musical about Soviet mods, "Stilyagi," or Hipsters.