As filmed "Old Hottabych"
In the hot summer of 1957, millions of Soviet boys and girls were taken by storm the theaters. On the screens out the new color film "Old Hottabych". It was filmed at the studio "Lenfilm" in 1956, based on the eponymous book. The author of the Old Hottabych - writer Lazar Ginzburg, who took the stage name Lagin.
In the late 30-ies I. Lazar was on a long trip on the island of Spitsbergen, where he was born the idea for this satirical tale. Lagin got the idea from a book by the English writer Thomas Gart "Copper pitcher," in which a young London-based architect produces copper jug into the wild genie imprisoned there by King Solomon.
In 1938, the "Old Man Hottabych" published "Pioneer" magazine. As a book the story was published in the 40th; and in 1955 the publishing house has released a second "version", where not only replaced were many episodes and characters, but the book itself has grown significantly in volume. On the basis of the second edition Lagin wrote the screenplay of the same name, in which the director Gennady Kazansky and directed the film. By the way, on account of the Kazan such wonderful films as "The Amphibian Man", "The Snow Queen", "New Adventures of Masha and Viti".
For mid-50s "Old Hottabych" - is a precedent for the quantity and quality of special effects. Precedent in the entire Soviet production. The unspoken goal was to catch up and overtake Hollywood. Production of paintings require special great effort from all departments Lenfilm. Money is not spared. Computer graphics in those days was not so much in the film combined shootings, including the best method for the times "wandering mask". The biggest burden was placed on the shop combined survey. Especially for this film even invented a new technique. The Research Institute have developed a special TV movie camera and film developing machine. The most difficult was incredible at the time of shooting flying on a magic carpet. Hung in the pavilion magic carpet was subsequently imposed on background flying landscape, and the clouds were created with the help of smoke. That smoke tears artist as Zhenya were caused when he dropped down the Indians donated bananas. But it was so to the point that the director left the scene. These fantastic shooting collected in the fourth pavilion "Lenfilm" crowds.
Hottabych, at first did not understand why "twenty-two pleasant young people run, fall and push each other only for a few moments drive nondescript leather ball", soon became an avid fan and enchants the opponent's goal.
Gate for the match commands "Chisel" and "Puck" (by the way, in the frame playing professional football) have been specially manufactured joinery workshops "Lenfilm". For example, the bar, which is on a plot twist or "played up" rivals, was made of rubber, while they themselves have made sliding gates, so that they can at the right time to become more or less. Under the gate on the field arranged trolleys and rails. When needed, to the gate, "ran" to meet the ball, they are dragged by ropes. When the ball flew into the bar, it lifted the sitting down in the pit, workers, and the rod bends.
On a small "Svetlana" Leningrad stadium filmed an episode when the sky a lot of balls falls on the players. Before filming filmmaker gave each player a ball and asked to throw them up high. The camera shoots against the sky flying balls, and then when the reverse scrolling frames happened that really fly balls from the top. But, as the stadium, "Svetlana" is very small, it was necessary for installation "dorisovyvat" on common backgrounds bleachers, scoreboards and large spotlights. A close-up sitting in the stands of spectators dosnimali already at the Kirov Stadium.
The work on the film "Old Hottabych" began to search the featured child roles: Wolke, Eugene and Gogi. Assistant director announced the start of trial, and the studio pulled thousands of mothers with their children.
Then these students were invited to the studio. It was necessary to find out who the children will be able to do everything that is required in the film, who can play Wolke, Zhenya, Gog. Therefore, the children were asked to read the verses. Who read with expression, with real feeling, that invited to come again. The following tasks were more complicated: was offered to play the scene. Pioneers were set conditions, such as they were walking in the woods, it started to rain; creek, through which you need to move on the way back, became turbulent and profound. And the students were required to submit, as they go in wet clothes, as the heavy baskets of mushrooms, it is difficult to cross the creek. In these short plays all conditional - no rain, no creek or wet clothing. Only a strong imagination could turn an empty room studio in the dense forest. And those who are better than others performed these scenes, was assigned the role of the pioneers in the new film. These students were Lesch Litvinov - sixth grader 82-th school, Genia Khudyakov - from grade 7 the 96th school and Lev Kovalchuk - the pupil 6-b-class 71-th school. The children are well taught lessons about behaved in class, so the teacher did not mind that they were shot in a movie.
distributed, anyone who played, Lev Kovalchuk is most similar to Gog - and gave him the role. Gene Eugene Khudyakov approached role - serious sensible boy. A Lesch Litvinov downright Wolke was present in the same playful, trusting. But here's the rub: Volka must be blond and black hair in Leschi. I thought and thought and came up with: it is necessary to paint Loshiny hair in bright color. But if mother agrees Leschi? When asked about it, she was hesitant for a long time: what if her son would be ugly? Will not hurt Loshiny classmates tease him, and "red"? Still, she agreed. And then the master makeup artist Vasily Goryunov did Loshiny The blond hair. And when it Vasily curled on top cocky crest - Lyosha laughed - because he liked the unruly tuft on the head.
The boys even earlier read a book about an old man Hottabych, so it was easy to learn the role. However, young artists all the time helped writer Lazar Lagin and director Leo Veniaminovich Mahtin. At rehearsals, they prompted the boys, how and what to say, explain what character should be at this or that hero. The boys listened to very carefully and try to do exactly as they were told. Filmmakers were happy with their "artists".
- At that time I was already in the files of "Lenfilm" - says Gennady I. Khudyakov (Eugene). - Just starred still quite small in the episode film "Alyosha Ptitsyn produces character", that's a photograph of me and invited to audition. Front of the camera and the other candidates, I played scenes from the script, so we and selected.
The guys were just exemplary actors. Young artists diligently complied with all the requirements of a director, and is filming behaved modestly and not capricious. During the filming and Lesch Genia were schoolchildren. Everywhere they went with the teacher Maria A. Smyslov. She saw to it that the children are strictly carried out daily routine, carefully prepared lessons. Their day was packed - shooting, rehearsals, lessons. Even to run, play around the boys was not always possible. After all, they worked. We get up early, on time came to shoot, answered the lessons the teacher ...
Home fairy role - very Hottabych - was also a big competition. It's no joke - this role auditioned Evgeny Lebedev and George Vitsin! But approved after all the actor Nikolai Volkov of Odessa. When he made up as an old man, the director immediately exclaimed: "Take!"
During the shooting of Nikolai Nikolaevich every time they withstand two hours of a complex make-up, and it is not in his beard: his long nose molded from a special dressing room plasticine.
Filming began in Leningrad, and, as usual in a movie, not since the beginning of the script. The first scene filmed in the pavilions "Lenfilm" studio, where built Wolken room, Gogi, landing and even ... a circus arena. Remember the episode when Wolken, Zhenya and Hottabych come to the circus? There's poor old wizard had eaten too much ice cream and great cold. In fact, Nicholas instead of ice cream, which he swallowed the entire frame and ate glazed curds - shares a secret Alexey Litvinov (Volka). - And because it was a lot of takes, the actor and ate them so much that after the last take, barely breathing and all lamented that never in my life on the cheese will not look.
Director of the painting "Old Hottabych" Tamara was Samoznaeva. She took care of that crew was equipped with everything you need: film, equipment; I had to premises, vehicles and a thousand different things. And one of its main duties was to get animals that are necessary for the film: elephants, camels, horses, donkeys Caravan of jewels. In search of a camel Tamara drove four kilometers of the Stalingrad area. I bought it on the farm and taken to Leningrad. By the way, in the future, this unplanned expenditure in the budget of the film's great impact on the job: in the episode, when a circus act on the hand Hottabych acrobats, actually have the Tigers were removed. But their money is not enough spent on the camel!
Scene, when in Moscow are huge caravans of camels and elephants, actually filmed in Sochi. At the time of filming there touring circus running Kornilov, who provided filmmakers their animals. This caravan was walking along the streets of Sochi, and the installation instead of Sochi houses inserted home in Moscow, such as the famous "skyscraper".
A screen adaptation of the fairy tale Lagin was extremely dissatisfied. Natalia Lagin: "Dad was strongly opposed to by" Hottabych "filmed a movie. I did not want to film on their books. And I am persuaded that a staircase descends, if coming from the studios. "I write for the readers and not for the spectators!". He believed, and rightly so, as it seems to me that it is impossible to convey the author's thoughts through the silver screen. What eventually happened. ... He was told: do not mess with a "thumbnail", it can not work with children. Dad was asked to put it in the credits ... Fortunately, Hottabych played a wonderful actor Nikolai Volkov. And Dad waved his hand Volkov one will pull the film. " As you know, the audience appreciated the film very differently. After the release of the film in its rental waited a resounding success. Actors almost a year alone and groups traveled around the country, met with the audience. By the end of this very long marathon heroes has openly wanted to go home: to my mother and to the school.
In the first six months of hire film looked 40 million people. The film's budget amounted to 3 mln. rub. For Alexey Litvinov performance as Wolke Kostylkova was the only work in cinema, his fee amounted to 2400 rubles. The film won several prizes: The incentive Diploma 1-Union Film Festival (1958), Certificate of Merit at the International Film Festival in Vancouver (1958), Honorary Diploma of the 1 International Children's Film in Panama (1971).
In the film, a lot of differences from the book:
- Removed the entire storyline with his brother Hottabych: heroes do not travel either in Italy or in the Arctic Ocean.
- No greedy American businessman Harry Vandendalles.
- In the film, when cast Hottabych not use spells. When the ejection of a hair is heard only the squeak.
- According to the book in the apartment Wolken Hottabych lived in a fish in an aquarium, and the film sat invisible on the cabinet.
- In the book Hottabych with Wolken and Eugene get to the football stadium on the subway, in which the genie to death was scared approaching train. In the film, this moment is missed.
- In the book Hottabych stop the engine in an icebreaker, and in the film - the aircraft.
- At the end of the film it becomes not Hottabych radio technician, like a book, and a circus magician.
- Genie by Nikolai Volkov came much kinder than in the original, where it is constantly threatened by others.
Years passed. Today, we can find out what became of the boy, "the Old Man Hottabych". Their photos were in the acting department of "Lenfilm", sometimes they are even called to audition, but as an artist are one and did not.
Volka - Alexey Litvinov, electromechanical finished college, went to sea, worked for many years in the subway and on the railroad. Gogh - Lev V. Kovalchuk, graduated from the Faculty of Electrophysics LETI, engaged lasers, now runs a research and production firm. Eugene - Gennady Ivanovich Khudyakov, also graduated from LETI. All his life he worked in the Institute of Television, has gone from a worker to the head of one of the scientific and technical fields. I never told anyone about his childhood cine. She died March 5, 2013.
Those who want to know how behaved in similar circumstances, a Soviet pioneer, a young architect in London, can read the story of Thomas Gart "Copper pitcher."