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Nikolai Burlyaev - 75: Because of what the actor's marriages with Varley and Bondarchuk broke up, and with whom he found his happiness
Nikolai Burlyaev - 75: Because of what the actor's marriages with Varley and Bondarchuk broke up, and with whom he found his happiness

On August 3, Nikolai Burlyaev, a famous actor and director, President of the Golden Knight International Film Forum, People's Artist of Russia, celebrated his 75th birthday. He became famous not only in the USSR, but also abroad as a teenager, starring in the films of Andrei Konchalovsky and Andrei Tarkovsky, and was remembered by millions of viewers for his roles in the films Ivan's Childhood, Andrei Rublev, The Master and Margarita, Military field novel ". But for more than 10 years he has not acted in films and is engaged in a business that he considers the main project in his life. And the greatest happiness for him was that his assistant in this was a woman whom he calls his destiny.

How a teenager conquered the movie world

Debut film work of Nikolai Burlyaev in the film The Boy and the Dove, 1961

Nikolai Burlyaev grew up in a family of economic engineers, but his paternal grandparents were mobile theater actors. Father regretted not following in their footsteps, but Nikolai made his dreams come true and continued the acting dynasty. True, as a child, he did not dare to think about the scene, because he stuttered badly after he was frightened by a neighbor's boy. His fate was decided by a case: when he was 13, one day a young man approached him on the street, introducing himself as a student of the directing department of VGIK, and offered to star in his thesis. Nikolai asked to show him the documents and read his name and surname on the student card: Andrei Mikhalkov. He seemed not to notice that the boy was stuttering, on the set he was very patient and attentive and taught him the first lessons in acting. Mikhalkov-Konchalovsky helped Burlyaev to believe in his abilities and became his godfather in cinema.

Still from the film Ivan's childhood, 1962

When Andrei Tarkovsky was looking for a teenager for the lead role in his film Ivan's Childhood, Konchalovsky recommended that he pay attention to 16-year-old Nikolai Burlyaev. Both works - the debut short film by Konchalovsky and the full-length film by Tarkovsky - received recognition both in the USSR and abroad: "The Boy and the Dove" was awarded the "Bronze Lion of St. Mark "at the Venice International Film Festival, and" Ivan's Childhood "- the" Golden Lion of St. Mark "at the same festival. 4 years later Burlyaev starred in yet another film masterpiece by Tarkovsky - "Andrei Rublev". Later, the actor called this period the most important page in his creative biography, because no other director's talent could match the scale of Tarkovsky's creative talent. All his life Burlyaev considered this director his idol, mentor and arbiter of fate.

Nikolai Burlyaev in the film Andrei Rublev, 1966

Thanks to Konchalovsky, Nikolai met not only with the director, who turned him into a world-class star, but also with almost the entire creative elite of that era. He often visited the Mikhalkovs' dacha on Nikolina Gora, made friends with Nikita Mikhalkov. In a common company, young Anastasia Vertinskaya was with them once, who, according to Burlyaev, shocked him with her beauty. But Nikita Mikhalkov was already courting her, and Nikolai did not want to cross the road to his friend, and he and the actress remained friends.

A scene from the movie Field-of-War, 1983

After school, Burlyaev entered the Shchukin school, he was accepted immediately to the second year, where Nikita Mikhalkov and Anastasia Vertinskaya already studied.8 years after completing his studies, the actor entered the directing department of VGIK and shot 2 short and 2 full-length films. His most famous directorial work was the film "Lermontov", where Burlyaev played the main role. And he considered Netuzhilin to be one of his favorite acting works in Peter Todorovsky's film "A Field-of-War".

Two marriages with actresses

Nikolay Burlyaev and Natalya Varley

When Burlyaev was 20 years old, he saw the film "Prisoner of the Caucasus" and was fascinated by the leading role. Natalya Varley also first saw the actor on the screen - in the film "Ivan's Childhood", and was also captivated by his talent and charm. When they met, they made an even greater impression on each other, and Natalya Varley became his wife. True, their marriage did not last long. The actress believed that the reason for the separation was Burlyaev's hobby for a colleague, Irina Pechernikova, but he himself denied this fact.

Nikolay Burlyaev and Natalya Varley

Varley years later admitted: "". Both of them were too young and not adapted to life, both admitted years later that at first they did not understand that they had too few common interests.

Nikolay Burlyaev and Natalia Bondarchuk

In his second wife, Natalya Bondarchuk, he was also captivated by beauty and talent. He fell in love with her at first as an actress, for whom Tarkovsky was the same center of the universe as he was for him. When he first saw her on the screen, Burlyaev immediately felt that this was his man. He told: "".

Nikolay Burlyaev and Natalia Bondarchuk

In the film "How the Steel Was Tempered" in the end neither Bondarchuk nor Burlyaev starred, but both did not regret it, because since then they have not parted. After a difficult parting with Tarkovsky, Natalya found support and salvation from despair in the person of Nikolai. And Burlyaev at that time met Archimandrite Alipy of the Pskov-Pechersk Lavra, who became his first confessor and helped to find peace of mind and confidence in the correctness of the chosen path. The actors got married and lived together for 17 years, raising two children. But in the end, they parted ways.

The main project in life and a fateful meeting

Nikolay Burlyaev in the film The Master and Margarita, 1994

In the 1980s. Nikolai Burlyaev was one of the most demanded artists and was at the peak of popularity after the release of the films "Evenings on a Farm near Dikanka", "Field War Romance", "Bambi's Childhood", "Lermontov", "Youth of Bambi" and others. in the 1990s. the crisis began, and the actor was left without roles. During this period, he played only one major role - Yeshua Ha-Notsri in the film by Yuri Kara "The Master and Margarita", but the audience saw him only 17 years later. Burlyaev said: "".

Nikolay Burlyaev and Inga Shatova

Burlyaev considers this festival to be the main project in his life, and thanks to him the actor met a woman with whom he finally built the family he had long dreamed of. Inge Shatova at that time was only 24 years old, she graduated from the acting department of GITIS, where she was called one of the most capable students. In the 1990s. she was not offered roles in films, and she came to work at the festival "Golden Knight". Burlyaev was struck by her youth and beauty, but he no longer wanted to connect fate with the actress. But Inga for the sake of him abandoned her acting career, married him, gave birth to two children and completely devoted herself to caring for the family.

Actor with wife and children

In this marriage, the actor found the harmony he was looking for. She became for him not only a companion, but also an assistant in organizing the Zolotoy Vityaz film forum, on which they have worked together ever since. Burlyaev says about her: "". Today, the main business of their lives is the Slavic Forum of Arts "Golden Knight", which Burlyaev calls "". He says that the acting profession for him faded into the background, and he began a new stage in life, and the greatest happiness is to share his interests and values ​​with his family.

Nikolay Burlyaev in the TV series Admiral, 2009

This project became significant not only for Nikolai Burlyaev: How a story from life suggested to Peter Todorovsky the plot of the film "Field-of-War".

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