Rudolf Nureyev, an actor

NEWS : Actor and film-maker Ralph Fiennes is to direct a film about Russian ballet dancer Rudolf Nureyev.

The film will be Fiennes third feature as a director, after 2011’s Coriolanus and 2013’s The Invisible Woman. Unlike those, though, the biographical drama – scripted by Sir David Hare – will not see Fiennes play the lead.

Philomena’s Gabrielle Tana will produce the film, set to shoot in late 2016.

Financed in part by BBC Films, the film will be based on Julie Kavanagh’s celebrated biography of the Soviet-born dancer who defected to the west in 1961.

Noureev film exposed

Nureyev’s passion for the cinema stemmed from his early childhood days: in Ufa, he frequently went to the cinema to watch the Soviet and foreign films that were being projected. This is were he discovered the films by Rudolph Valentino.

His debut in the cinema is best portrayed by two films: “Valentino” by Ken Russel in 1977 and “Exposed” by James Toback in 1982.

During the last years of his life, his career was inspired by three of the most extraordinary conductors of the 20th century: Karl Böhm, Herbert von Karajan and Leonard Bernstein..


1963, An Evening with the Royal Ballet

1964, Rudolf Nureyev in Spolète, film by Philippe Collin and Pierre-André Boutang

1965, Le Jeune Homme et la Mort – Young Man and Death (Roland Petit)

1966, Big Bertha (Paul Taylor)

1966, Swan Lake (Nureyev choreography for the Vienna Opera)

1972, Don Quixote (Nureyev choreography for the Australian Ballet), directed by Nureyev

1972, I’m a Dancer, film by Pierre Jourdan

1972, Sleeping Beauty (National Ballet of Canada)

1977, Valentino, film by Ken Russell

1980, Giselle (at the Opera of Roma)

1982, Romeo and Juliet (Nureyev choreography for the Scala Opera in Milan)

1983, Exposed, film by James Tobak*

1983, Raymonda at the Paris Opera, filmed by Dirk Sanders

1984, La Tempête (Nureyev choreography for the Paris Opera), film by Philippe Ducrest, and Arlequin, magicien par amour (Ivo Cramér), film by Dominique Delouche

1987, Cinderella (Nureyev choreography for the Paris Opera), directed by Rudolf Nureyev

1988, Nutcracker (Nureyev choreography for the Paris Opera), directed by Rudolf Nureyev

1989, Coup de foudre

1992, Nureyev, film by Patricia Foy

1992, Mémoire d’une Bayadère, film by Catherine Dupuis

1994, La Bayadère, film by Alexandre Tarta

1999/2002, Documentary-reports by François Roussillon : Rêves d’étoiles (Raymonda, La Belle au bois dormant, Roméo et Juliette, La Bayadère.)