The most famous Georgian son of a "Turkish citizen" would have turned 92 on March 23 Archil Gomiashvili … The actor played many roles in theater and cinema, but for most of the audience he remained an actor of one role. And this cannot be called an accident, because he was in many ways similar to the great combinator in real life. Adventurism was in his blood: he dropped out of college because he got involved with hooligans, he was expelled from the Moscow Art Theater school for a fight, at 44 he agreed to play a 28-year-old Ostap Bender, and at 62 he decided to quit cinema, went into business and became rich. An equally entertaining novel could have been written about his adventures.
Archil Gomiashvili's steep disposition and adventurous character has been famous since his youth. However, as well as about his artistic and artistic abilities. While studying at the Tbilisi Art College, he received an order to design a performance at a local theater - at that time Georgy Tovstonogov was working there, who drew attention to the talented young man. However, he did not study for long - Archil dropped out of college, as he made friends with the thief in law Jaba Ioseliani and once went to prison when he was arrested with a company of hooligans.
Fate was favorable to Archil Gomiashvili and often gave him second chances. Tovstonogov advised him to try his hand at acting, and the young man went to Moscow. It was not difficult for him to enter the Moscow Art Theater School, but he was also expelled from there: in a cafe he started a fight with a pogrom. I had to return to Georgia, where he was admitted to the Academic Theater.
Archil Gomiashvili made his film debut only at the age of 31. But until the age of 44, his name did not mean anything to most viewers, until he appeared on the screens in the image of Ostap Bender. First, he tried on this image for himself in a one-man show, in which the actor played and sang for all the characters at once. However, in Leonid Gaidai's film, instead of him, viewers could see Vladimir Vysotsky, Vladimir Basov, Valentin Gaft, Evgeny Evstigneev, Andrei Mironov, Spartak Mishulin, Alexander Shirvindt, Nikolai Rybnikov and even Muslim Magomayev - all of them auditioned for this role. Gomiashvili was not even on this list until one of the director's assistants invited him to pay attention to the actor who had played Bender in the theater for many years.
When Leonid Gaidai saw Archil Gomiashvili on the stage, he lost all doubts - there was a real Bender in front of him, and the actor got this role, coveted by many stars of Soviet cinema, despite the fact that he was much less popular with the public, and besides he is 16 years older than his hero. This role was a real triumph for him. After the release of the film, the actor was invited to a solemn meeting of the Council of Ministers of the USSR, where he was handed the keys to a three-room apartment in one of the famous Stalinist skyscrapers.
Perhaps the fit was so accurate due to the fact that the actor actually had a lot in common with his movie hero. Just like Bender, Gomiashvili was inclined to adventurism, just like he enjoyed constant success with women. He was romantically involved with director Tatyana Lioznova, actresses Lyudmila Tselikovskaya and Tatyana Okunevskaya.
After moving to Moscow, Gomiashvili got a job at the Lenin Komsomol Theater, but did not find a common language with the director Mark Zakharov and left for another theater. Due to his difficult nature, he often clashed with directors. After filming "The Twelve Chairs", the actor did not speak with Leonid Gaidai for 6 years due to the fact that he did not allow him to voice the role - Bender was not supposed to speak with a Georgian accent. In addition, they constantly argued on the set - the actor often disagreed with the director's vision of his image. "" - said the actor.
Although Gomiashvili continued to perform on the stage and act in films, where only in the image of Stalin he appeared 5 times, he never managed to repeat his triumph after the "Twelve Chairs". In the late 1980s. the actor tried his hand as a screenwriter and director, and soon decided to completely change his field of activity. He always had an entrepreneurial talent, but he really managed to realize it only at the age of 62, after Gomiashvili left the cinema.
There were several versions of where the actor got his start-up capital, some quite in the spirit of Bender. According to one of them, once in one of the German casinos, Gomiashvili bet the last 100 marks on luck and won 100 thousand. On the other, he earned them in the gambling business during his 5 years in Germany. Be that as it may, he invested this money in his own business: he founded the Golden Ostap club, on the basis of which he opened one of the most fashionable restaurants of the early 1990s. The actor's entrepreneurial spirit forced many to draw parallels between him and Ostap Bender, to which he replied: "".
In his declining years, Archil Gomiashvili realized the dream of his most famous movie hero: he became rich and successfully did business not only in his country, but also abroad. The former actor also spent a lot of money on charity: he helped VGIK students and elderly Georgian artists who were on the brink of poverty. At the age of 78, Archil Gomiashvili was diagnosed with advanced cancer. Unfortunately, the actor was not saved. On May 31, 2005, he passed away.
The role that glorified Archil Gomiashvili could have gone to another actor, but remained among 12 looks in which the audience never saw Vladimir Vysotsky.