Rustam Ibragimbekov, the renowned Soviet-era writer behind films including 1994 Oscar winner Burnt by the Sun and the 1970 classic White Sun of the Desert, died Friday in Moscow, according to multiple reports. He was 83.
Born on February 4, 1939, in Baku, Azerbaijan SSR, Ibragimbekov penned more than 50 films throughout his career, including Guard Me, My Talisman (1986), Close to Eden (1991), The Barber of Siberia (1998), East/West (1999), Broken Bridges (1999) and Nomad: The Warrior (2005), breaking out with the action-comedy White Sun of the Desert, which he and Valentin Ezhov wrote for director Vladimir Motyl.
He co-wrote the historical drama Burnt by the Sun with director Nikita Mikhalkov and watched that film claim the Cannes Film Festival’s Grand Prix on its path to the Oscars.
Ibragimbekov was also a director, producer and playwright who helmed the films Aila (1998), Telefon doveriya (2001) and A Trap for the Ghost, (2011), along with a segment of 1977’s Günlarin bir günü. He penned more than a dozen plays which were staged in theaters across Russia, and founded the Ibrus Theatre in 2001.
Ibragimbekov launched his career after studying screenwriting and directing at the Gerasimov Institute of Cinematography in Moscow. He was a member of both the European Film Academy and Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Plans for a memorial have not yet been disclosed.
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