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The creator of animated films «Winnie the Pooh», «Boniface’s vacation» and «Film-film-film» - Fedor Khitruk has died

On December 3, 2012, in Moscow has died famous soviet film director Fedor Savelievich Khitruk. He died at 96-year of life. Fedor Khitruk is famous as a creator of cartoons about " Winnie the Pooh ".

The creator of animated films «Winnie the Pooh», «Boniface’s vacation» and «Film-film-film» - Fedor Khitruk has died

People’s artist of USSR, a film director, an artist and a screenwriter Fedor Savelievich Khitruk was born on May 1, 1917 in Tver. His father Savely Khitruk was a participator of  revolutionary events in 1905. After the October Revolution of 1917 had worked in provincial executive committee, then he had been a commissar of provisions, and in 1931 with his family was send to Germany from "Stankoeksport".

In 1931-1934 years his family lived in Stuttgart (Germany).

From 1932 to 1933 Fedor Khitruk studied in Stuttgart artistic-trade school.

In 1934-1936 he studied in Art college in Moscow. In 1938 graduated Institute for Advanced Studies graphic artists (Nicholas Vysheslavtsev’s Studio).

  Animated films «Winnie the Pooh»

Fedor Khitruk was interested in animation after viewing Disney’s animated films on I International Film Festival in Moscow in 1935. He tried to enter a "Soyuzmultfilm" Studio for several times, but every time he was refused. And only in November 1937 Khitruk was hired as a trainee animator on " Soyuzmultfilm " Studio. There he had worked up to 1941.

From 1941 to 1947 Fedor Khitruk was demobbed into the Armed Forces. After graduating the course of military translators, during World War, he had worked in the headquarter of the 3rd Ukrainian Front. Then he had commanded the platoon radio intercept of the 17th Air Army. After the Victory in 1945, served as a translator for two years in Berlin.

In 1948-1983 Fedor Khitruk worked on " Soyuzmultfilm " Studio. From 1961 he worked as a film director. His 1st animation film of the director was "One crime’s story" (1962) about  neighbour’s noise that brought a hero to attempt the murder. As a screenwriter and a film director Fedor Khitruk had made " Toptyzhka " (1964), " Boniface’s vacation " (1965)," Film-film-film " (1968), " The Lion and the Bull " (1983) and others that won a lot of awards on different international film festivals.

Animated films «Boniface’s vacation»

Khitruk’s animated feature "Give you a star" (1974) had become a winner of The Cannes International Film Festival among short animated films in 1975.

Great popularity among russian audience have earned his three animation features about Winnie the Pooh (1969-1972). These cartoons were highly rated by Wolfgang Raytermann, the creator of Disney’s "Winnie the Pooh". He confessed that he likes Khitruk’s films more than his own creation.

In the 1980s he he served as artistic director of the " Multtelefilm " Studio.

As an animator he had created 200 characters in 102 films. Among them are ‑ Ole-Lukoie, The Snow Queen and A Little Red Riding Hood.

In 1980-1988  Fedor Khitruk was vice president of The International Animated Film Association (ASIFA). In 1996-2000 he was an honorary president of The Association of Russian animated films. From 1995 was an honorary president of International Animated Film Festival "Golden Fish".

Animated films «Film-film-film»

In 1993 with animation directors Eduard Nazarov, Yuri Norshtein and Andrei Khrzhanovsky Khitruk founded the school-studio of animated films "SHAR" with a Russian Goskino’s support. This school produces animated films, prepares professional film directors and animators and also advices professionals about all aspects of animation production.

In 1956-1981 Fedor Khitruk taught students on animator courses on " Soyuzmultfilm " Studio.

From 1980 to 2003 he taught at the Higher Courses of screenwriters and directors and was one of the initiators of the creation of the Department for training animation directors on these courses. In different years Khitruk’s students were Alexander Petrov, Mikhail Aldashin Alexei Turkus, Oksana Cherkasova, Alexei Karaew and others.

Fedor Khitruk was a member of Russian Academy of cinematography "Nicka" and an author of memoirs and articles about the animated cinema. He was a compiler of The international vocabulary of the animation terms.

Fedor Khitruk was a people's artist of USSR (1985), a laureate of the State Awards of USSR (1976, 1982), the State Award of GDR in art (1972) and RF President Award in Literature and Art. He was awarded the Order of the Red Banner (1971), the Order of the World War II degree (1988), the Order "For the Service to the Fatherland " III degree (1998). In 2002 he received the special prize of the President of Russia "For outstanding contribution into Russian cinematography (2001)".

Khitruk was a laureate of many cinematographic awards. Among them are "Golden Eagle" (2002), "Nicka" (2007) in nomination " For outstanding contribution into Russian cinematography ".

Fedor Khitruk died on December 3, 2012 in Moscow at 96-year of life.

We have lost a great director of animated films, Fedor Savelievich Khitruk. In fond memory of Fedor Savelievich.

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