We're looking for contributors

Silent Movie Star Vera Kholodnaya: 'Queen of Russian Cinema' Returns

Silent movie Star Vera KholodnayaRussian silent movie star remembered: Vera Kholodnaya

Vera Kholodnaya, Russia's top female movie star of the 1910s, will be brought back to the fore thanks to a Moscow theater's silent film series, reports the Moscow Times. Beginning on November 23, 2005, four of Kholodnaya's five extant films – including three made prior to the Russian Revolution – will be screened at the Illyuzion Theater: Yevgeni Bauer's Children of the Century (1915) and A Life for a Life aka Her Sister's Rival (1916), Pyotr Chardynin's Mirages (1916), and Chardynin and Cheslav Sabinsky's Be Silent, Sorrow, Be Silent (1918). The only missing title will be Sabinsky's A Corpse Living (1918), based on Tolstoy's The Living Corpse. (Image: Vera Kholodnaya ca. 1917.)

In Children of the Century / Deti veka, Vera Kholodnaya (born on August 5, 1893, in Poltava, Ukraine, then part of the Russian Empire) plays a clerk's wife who is pursued by a wealthy suitor. Mirages / Mirazhi, which will be presented with a new score by the St. Petersburg electronic duo Yolochniye Igrushki, stars Kholodnaya as a young woman seduced (and later disillusioned) by the callous son of her wealthy patron. In A Life for a Life / Her Sister's Rival / Zhizn za zhizn, she is one of two sisters in love with the same heavily indebted prince. And Be Silent, Sorrow, Be Silent / Molchi, grust... molchi has the actress as a circus artist married to an alcoholic acrobat while wooed by a wealthy admirer.

Carmen Video, which is sponsoring the Vera Kholodnaya film series, is releasing the four titles on DVD for the first time. According to a spokesperson for the company, the films haven't been "fully restored" because of cost issues.

Vera Kholodnaya: Death at the peak of her fame

A victim of the Spanish flu pandemic, Vera Kholodnaya died at the age of 26 – at the peak of her fame – on Feb. 17, 1919, in Odessa. Various rumors had it that Kholodnaya was killed by the Bolsheviks or by a lover who believed her to be a Bolshevik spy. According to online sources, her husband, car racer and sports news editor Vladimir Kholodny, died two months after her.

Now, Vera Kholodnaya hasn't quite achieved the same legendary or semi-legendary status as other movie stars who met with an early death, e.g., Rudolph Valentino, Jean Harlow, Carole Lombard, Gérard Philipe, James Dean, Marilyn Monroe, Natalie Wood. And that's probably because the overwhelming majority of her films is now lost. (The IMDb lists only about a dozen Vera Kholodnaya movies, though other sources state that her list of credits range between 50 and 100 titles.)

Yet, Kholodnaya's life served as the inspiration for Nikita Mikhalkov's 1975 drama A Slave to Love / Raba lyubvi, starring Elena Solovey as silent movie superstar Olga Nikolayevna Voznesenskaya, and she was the subject of Oleg Kovalov's 1992 documentary Island of the Dead / Ostrov myortvykh. Additionally, Vera Kholodnaya had her image issued on a postage stamp in the early '90s, while a life-size bronze statue in her honor was unveiled in Odessa in 2003.

If you found Silent Movie Star Vera Kholodnaya: 'Queen of Russian Cinema' Returns an informative post, please recommend it to your friends. See share buttons above and on the left.
And consider following Alt Film Guide on Facebook and/or joining the FB group All About Movies.
Silent Movie Star Vera Kholodnaya: 'Queen of Russian Cinema' Returns © 2004-2015 Alt Film Guide and/or author(s). Text NOT to be reproduced without prior written consent.

Continue Reading: 2005 Prix Screen International Nominees

Previous Post: HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE Among Ten Animated Films Up for Academy Award


Click on 'Load Comments' to leave a comment about Silent Movie Star Vera Kholodnaya: 'Queen of Russian Cinema' Returns.

Important: Different views and opinions are perfectly fine, but courtesy and respect are imperative. Abusive, bigoted, baseless (spreading misinformation), and/or trollish/inflammatory comments will be blocked and offenders may be banned.




FILM ARCHIVES

Greta Garbo DVD: From 1930 ANNA CHRISTIE to GRAND HOTEL
Joel McCrea Movies: Centenary Tribute
Polar Bears and ALBERT SCHWEITZER: Oscar-Winning Documentaries Academy Screening
BACHELOR APARTMENT Review - Lowell Sherman, Irene Dunne, Mae Murray Lowell Sherman
Rudy Vallee, THE VAGABOND LOVER: Rare Movies on TV
Otto Preminger Centennial Tribute
Fred Zinnemann: Oscar Actors Director
Eddie Albert: GREEN ACRES, ROMAN HOLIDAY Actor Dies
'Baby Face' 1933 with Barbara Stanwyck in London
NYC NOIR: Film Noir in New York City
Split Personality Disorder Movie: 'The Most Shocking Film' Gets Rare Screening
Ernest Borgnine Tribute at the Aero
'Casablanca': Ingrid Bergman 'Pales' Next to Hepburn, Davis
AFI Life Achievement Award Winners: From John Ford to Jane Fonda
DRUNKEN ANGEL Akira Kurosawa
Vivien Leigh, Marlon Brando, Patricia Neal, Burt Lancaster, Ernest Borgnine on TCM
Hugh Stewart, 100, Dies: Edited Alfred Hitchcock's Original THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH
Ann Dvorak on TCM: SCARFACE, I WAS AN AMERICAN SPY, MASSACRE
Anne Francis on TCM: FORBIDDEN PLANET, BRAINSTORM, A LION IS IN THE STREETS
Actress Joan Taylor Dies: Movie Monsters and Flying Saucers