Famed Russian actor Yankovsky dies at 65
MOSCOW (AFP) — Oleg Yankovsky (February 23, 1944 - May 20, 2009) a popular Russian actor best known internationally for his work with dissident Soviet filmmaker Andrei Tarkovsky, died of cancer Wednesday aged 65.
Yankovsky died early Wednesday morning after a long battle with the illness, said Yulia Kosereva, a spokeswoman for Moscow's Lenkom theatre where the actor had worked since 1973.
"He had cancer. He had been fighting it for more than half a year," Kosereva told AFP.
The renowned stage and screen actor was born in 1944 in Kazakhstan after his family was exiled there under the brutal dictatorship of Joseph Stalin. His father died in a Gulag labour camp in the Central Asian republic.