How was the fate of Katerina Matveevna from the "White Sun of the Desert"

8-02-2018, 13:30

How was the fate of Katerina Matveevna from the "White Sun of the Desert"

In the filmography of this actress only one role, and that without words. But it was she who made the journalist Galina Luchai, who has neither professional acting education nor the experience of filming, known throughout the country.
Neither before nor after the “White Sun of the Desert” she appeared on the screens, but still this actress is named after her famous heroine - the wife of Comrade Sukhov Katerina Matveyevna.

How was the fate of Katerina Matveevna from the "White Sun of the Desert"

Galina Luchay in the film * White Sun of the Desert *, 1969
Galina Luchay got to the set by accident - she never dreamed about acting, and worked in another field. She was born in Irkutsk in 1938, three months after her father was arrested and sent into exile. Galina never saw him again - three years later, the family learned that he had died from a broken heart. Together with her mother, they moved to Moscow, where Galina graduated from the Faculty of Journalism at Moscow State University. During the practice on television, its leader was Vyacheslav Luchai, who soon became her husband.

How was the fate of Katerina Matveevna from the "White Sun of the Desert"

Shot from the movie * White Sun of the Desert *, 1969
Initially, there was no love line in the story about the adventures of the Red Army man Fyodor Sukhov in Central Asia. Only when Vladimir Motyl began the shooting, the theme of love appeared in the script. The director attached a special meaning to Katerina Matveevna’s image: “I was not interested in shooting a purely detective picture, this genre did not appeal to me. The script, of course, was good. But it was necessary to find a zest, which was the love of the experienced Red Army soldier Sukhov to a simple Russian woman. I saw Katerina Matveevna as a woman of the Kustodiyev type. She was supposed to be “in the body”, a sort of dream of a soldier starving for flesh ... When Katerina Matveyevna appeared in my imagination, Sukhov ceased to be a poster soldier of the revolution, implanting new power. And an explanation of his behavior appeared. And what is it: a soldier, a man, is constantly at the harem, his representatives hang on his neck, and he has no attention to them! What is the reason for this anomaly? And then he dreams of his sweetheart, mentally talking to her.

How was the fate of Katerina Matveevna from the "White Sun of the Desert"

Shots from the movie * White Sun of the Desert *, 1969
Find an actress for this role for a long time failed.None of the actresses of the director did not suit - he rejected even Chursina and Khityaeva's candidacies. “But, apparently, the one that had touched the soul of the village peasant Sukhov, the image-vision of his dreams, his distant beloved and wife, should not have the catchy beauty,” explained Vladimir Motyl. Once he was walking along the corridor of Lenfilm and behind one of the slightly opened doors of the assembly room he saw exactly the one he was looking for - a woman with an inspired face and a mysterious smile. Galina Luchay worked as a television program editor and did not plan to act in films. At first, she flatly refused, but the director still managed to convince her.

How was the fate of Katerina Matveevna from the "White Sun of the Desert"

Shot from the movie * White Sun of the Desert *, 1969
The author of the letters that Sukhov wrote to the “beloved Katerina Matveevna” was actually directed by Mark Zakharov. When asked about whom he addressed such tender words and whom he represented when he wrote them, he replied: “I thought most about this woman (Galina Luchai). She is not an actress, but a very colorful figure. If I were Sukhov, I would have fallen in love with this too. I imagined how she would read these courtesies. ”

How was the fate of Katerina Matveevna from the "White Sun of the Desert"

The only role of Galina Luchay
Despite the incredible popularity of the film and its heroine, Galina Luchai was not recognized on the streets - in life she was slimmer than on the screen.And after 35 years, she began to hurt and became very thin. The actress said: “Special thickening was applied to my hips, but the corresponding full legs could not find“ under them ”for a long time. As a result, in the cinema to my “top” they mounted the “bottom” of some unfamiliar lady ”. But the bare legs of the "unfamiliar lady" from the film demanded that censorship be removed - this episode was regarded as pornography.

How was the fate of Katerina Matveevna from the "White Sun of the Desert"

* Alien * legs of Katerina Matveevna
When the film “The White Sun of the Desert” came out on screens, Galina Luchay was already living in Mongolia - there her husband was appointed sobrik, and she was publishing a Russian-language newspaper for geologists. And on her return to Moscow, the woman returned to television, where she became the editor of the TV programs “Club of Travelers”, “In the animal world” and “Kinopanorama”. She didn’t plan to act in films anymore, and perceived her acting experience as nothing more than a funny adventure. And rejected all the proposals of directors who fell on her after the shooting.

How was the fate of Katerina Matveevna from the "White Sun of the Desert"

The only role of Galina Luchay
At 62, Galina Luchay was diagnosed with advanced cancer. Unfortunately, it was not possible to save her. In 2001, she died, not having lived three days before her 63rd birthday.Her husband, who had survived his wife for only 2 years, said after her death: “Well, we lived with Galya, my dear Tick, 40 very rich interesting years. 40 years together! And I think that after reading these notes, you will agree with the assessment of our life, which Galya gave in her last interview on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the release of the film “White Sun of the Desert”: “My husband and I lived a completely happy life.”

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