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Actor Leonid Kuravlyov Dies at Age 85

The Soviet and Russian actor performed in more than 200 films.

Igor Vereshchagin (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Leonid Kuravlyov, a Soviet and Russian actor, died on Sunday at age of 85. He was admitted to Moscow’s main Covid hospital with pneumonia earlier this month, and then released. The cause of death was determined to be complications due to the coronavirus.

Kuravlyov was born in 1936 in Moscow and graduated from the Gerasimov Institute of Cinematography (VGIK) in 1960, where he studied under Boris Bibikov.

Before graduation, he starred in a film directed by Andrei Tarkovsky and Alexandr Gordon “Today No One Will be Fired” (1959). He became a well-known and much beloved figure later in his career, starring in “The Golden Calf” (1968); “Ivan Vasilievich Changes Profession” (1973); “Afonya” (1975); “Seventeen Moments of Spring” (1979); and in Leonid Gaidai’s last film, a joint Russian-American production called “The Weather Is Good on Deribasovskaya, It Rains Again on Brighton Beach” (1992). 

He starred in more than 200 films and continued to act until 2015. 

He was awarded the title of Honored Artist of the RSFSR in 1965, 12 years later — People's Artist. Kuravlyov was awarded the Order of the Badge of Honor and Order of Merit for the Fatherland, IV degree (2012).

“In most of his roles, Kuravlyov was almost a folklore character — either a modern version  of Ivan the Fool, which [the directors] Shukshin and Danelia sensed in him perfectly, or Voltaire's Candide or the Innocent,” wrote Russian film-critic, Anton Dolin for Meduza. 

Kuravlyov will be buried on Feb. 1 in Troekurovsky Cemetery.

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