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June 21 could have turned 80 years old, the famous theater and film actor, People's Artist of Russia Valery Zolotukhin, but 8 years ago he passed away. He played about 90 roles in films, many of which became legendary, but his fame was never unambiguous - he had as many ill-wishers as fans. He was accused of creative jealousy and envy, condemned for excessive frankness and disrespect for women, and once almost the entire Union took up arms against Zolotukhin …
Valery Zolotukhin was born a day before the start of the war, into a peasant family in Altai, in the village of Bystry Istok. The father went to the front and saw his son only in 1943, when he received a short leave of absence due to injury. Returning from the war, he became the chairman of the collective farm. It seemed that life, which had turned into a peaceful course, finally began to improve, but then an accident occurred, due to which 6-year-old Valery was almost left without a leg. Once he fell from the height of the second floor and badly injured his knee. Medical assistance was not provided to him immediately, moreover, he was given the wrong diagnosis. They put his leg from hip to ankle in plaster cast, Valery was bedridden for several years and walked on crutches until the 8th grade. At first, doctors doubted that he would be able to save the leg, and that he would ever be able to move independently, but even then the boy had a goal that forced him to work hard, overcoming pain, and develop knee mobility.
With such problems, there was nothing to dream about the stage, but Zolotukhin, as a child, decided that he would perform in the theater. Later he said: "".
Teachers Zolotukhin disliked, because even then his intractability and "truthfulness" brought many problems to those around him. Later, the actor recalled this case: "".
After school, he managed not only from the first attempt to enter GITIS, but also to go to the department of musical comedy, where he had to sing and dance. Zolotukhin limped even while walking, and any physical activity could lead to an exacerbation of the disease, but he was ready to work under any conditions. Fortunately, his teachers noticed in time that he was subject not only to the role of a comedian and a simpleton, but also to serious dramatic roles, and he rarely danced on stage.
While still a student, Zolotukhin married the most beautiful and unattainable classmate Nina Shatskaya. She began acting in films before him, and once, when they came to her husband's homeland together, they showed a film with her participation in a village club, and in the local newspaper they wrote: "". This hurt Zolotukhin and gave him an incentive to pursue his own film career. By the end of the 1960s. he played several leading roles in cinema, and in 1971 he gained all-Union popularity after the main role in the film "Bumbarash". True, this did not save their marriage - Nina Shatskaya left her husband for her theater colleague Leonid Filatov. Zolotukhin believed that their relationship was destroyed by creative jealousy and rivalry between spouses, and his wife was sure that the reason was different - the actor's infidelity.
In the mid-1970s.on the set of the film "The Only" the actor met the director's assistant Tamara, who became his second wife. They lived together for 40 years, largely due to the fact that the wife turned a blind eye to the actor's many hobbies. She even resigned herself to the fact that he had a second family with a young actress Irina Lindt. Zolotukhin not only did not hide this fact, but also willingly shared with journalists intimate details of his private life. Many were jarred by such excessive frankness, even his fans turned away from him after the actor brought to the public judgment both his relations with women and the behind-the-scenes secrets of theatrical life, allowing himself unflattering remarks about his colleagues.
When the actor published his diary entries, many colleagues and acquaintances harbored a grudge against him. The actor admitted: "".
Millions of viewers took up arms against Zolotukhin after Ryazanov, in his documentary, spoke about the actor's relationship with Vladimir Vysotsky. At first, he considered Zolotukhin his friend, they starred in 5 films together and performed on the stage of the Taganka Theater for more than 15 years, but the friendship came to an end after Valery agreed to replace him in the second cast in the play "Hamlet" - Vysotsky often went abroad, and the director decided to play it safe. This role was hard-won and very important for Vysotsky, and although Zolotukhin never appeared on stage in this image, the poet could not forgive him for the very fact of his consent.
After that, many began to call Zolotukhin an envious Salieri, who dreamed of the glory of Mozart, to which he himself replied: "".
Many colleagues found him odd, arrogant, conflicted, and proud. But in all his manifestations, he was sincere, although his revelations often hurt other people. With all the ambiguity of his actions and the contradictory nature of his character, one thing Zolotukhin was not to be occupied with - genuine acting talent and professionalism. He could not sleep at night if he doubted that the role in the theater was a success, he did not like to revise his films so as not to be disappointed in himself. Perhaps that is why his characters did not look like schematic villains or folk heroes on the screens, but living people, with all their difficulties, passions and shortcomings.
The actor was proud that he could provide for his beloved women and did not leave any of them in difficult times, but many acquaintances considered him a bigamist who did not respect any of the women: Two families of Valery Zolotukhin.
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