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Tajik Filmmaker Bakhtiyor Khudojnazarov Dies in Berlin

Wednesday 22 April 2015

DUSHANBE (Asia-Plus) – Tajik-Russian filmmaker Bakhtiyor Khudoinazarov died in a clinic in the German capital, Berlin, yesterday aged 49. Bakhtiyor Khudojnazarov (بختیار خدانظروف – May 29, 1965-April 21, 2015) was a film director, producer and screenwriter from Tajikistan.

Bakhtiar Khudojnazarov
(Credit: Keystone)

Born in Tajikistan during the Soviet Union period, Bakhtyar Khudojnazarov worked for Tadjikfilm Studios, TV and radio, as a journalist or assistant director, from 1982 to 1984. He then studied at the Moscow Film Institute (VGIK), in Igor Talankin’s class, where he directed two short films (Shutniki aka “Jokers” in 1986, Verish Nje Verish aka “Believe It Or Not” in 1988) and a documentary (Sobachija Okhota aka “Hunting with Dogs” in 1987). In 1991, two years after he graduated, he directed and co-wrote his first feature film Bratan, “le frère” (1991) and won several awards in International film festivals. He eventually directed his second film On est quitte (1993), co-produced by many different countries (especially Germany since he started to live and work in Berlin in 1993) and for which he collaborated again with Leonid Makhkamov for the scenario. He won a prestigious Silver Lion in Venice for this film.

He benefited from a bigger budget for his next film, Luna Papa (1999), another international co-production, co-written with Georgian filmmaker Irakli Kvirikadze and starring Russian rising star Chulpan Khamatova, German famous actor Moritz Bleibtreu and Tajik actor Ato Mukhamedzhanov (the latter’s last movie). Khudojnazarov created a Kusturica-alike poetic atmosphere for which the crew built an entire village in a desert of Central Asia. It became his most internationally famous movie and received numerous awards, including a Nika Award for best director (main Russian national award). The music composed by Daler Nazarov also became an appreciated soundtrack.

He then directed Le costume (2003), also an international co-production, from a scenario by Oleg Antonov and with Daler Nazarov for the music again. His next film will be a Russian production, Tanker Tango (2005).

One of Khudojnazarov’s last movies was Major Sokolov’s Courtesans presented in Russian theaters in 2014.

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