|Who is it?||Actor|
|Birth Day||April 28, 1924|
|Birth Place||Kaunas, Lithuania, Lithuania|
|Age||96 YEARS OLD|
|Died On||4 September 2014(2014-09-04) (aged 90)\nVilnius, Lithuania|
In 1940 in Kaunas, based on the amateur collective that existed at the House of Labor, a professional theater was created, which was headed by the young Director Juozas Miltinis, and soon the theater moved to Panevėžys. In 1941 Donatas Banionis was admitted to the troupe.
In 1944, Banionis graduated from the studio at the Panevėžys Theater, becoming a professional actor.
On the stage, Donatas Banionis played over 100 characters. He acted in the plays "The Inspector General" based on Nikolai Gogol's play (1945), "Liar" based on the play Carlo Goldoni (1952), "How the Steel Was Tempered" based on the novel by Nikolai Ostrovsky (1952), "Gedda Gabler" based on Henrik Ibsen (1957) , "There, Behind the Door" based on the work of Wolfgang Borchert (1966), "The Chair" after the play by Valery Vrublevskaya (1980), etc.
In 1947, Banionis appeared in the film Marytė. However, his cinematic debut is considered to be the film Adam wants to be a Man (1959) by Director Vytautas Žalakevičius, then Banionis starred in his picture The Chronicle of One Day (1964). Banionis' fame came after the film by Žalakevičius Nobody Wanted to Die (1965). The actor's work in the film by Savva Kulish Dead Season (1968) earned him great popularity.
Member of the CPSU since 1960. Member of the Communist Party of Lithuania. Member of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union of the 9th convocation (1974-1979).
Donatas Banionis starred in the films Nobody Wanted to Die (1965), The Little Prince (1966), Operation Trust (1967), King Lear (1970), Goya or the Hard Way to Enlightenment (1971), The Life and Death of Ferdinand Luce (1976), Beethoven — Days of a Life (1976), Armed and Dangerous (1976), Commander of the Lucky "Pike" (1972), The FLIGHT of Mr. McKinley (1975), Centaurs (1978), Niccolo Paganini (1982), Zmielov (1985), Living Target (1990), Without Evidence (1992), Anna (1996) Yard (1999), Tadas Blinda, The Beginning (2011), etc.
Vladimir Putin once stated that Banionis' part in the 1968 Soviet spy film Dead Season was the reason why he joined the KGB.
Banionis began his career with some films in Lithuanian, but he would later play mainly in Russian language films (although his voice was dubbed by Russian actors). He has also worked outside the USSR like in the title role Francisco Goya of the USSR-GDR coproduction Goya or the Hard Way to Enlightenment (1971), directed by Konrad Wolf and in the title role as Ludwig van Beethoven in the 1976 DEFA-production Beethoven - Tage aus einem Leben. Aside from films, he was a popular stage actor in Panevėžys, where he acted since the age of 17, and which was frequented by Donatas' fans from all over the former Soviet Union. His first Teacher was Juozas Miltinis. He acted in Vilnius, in the Lithuanian National Drama Theatre.
In the early 1980s, after the retirement of Juozas Miltinis, Banionis was appointed the chief Director of the Panevėžys Theater, assuming, in addition to problems of a creative nature, the entire burden of purely economic problems: preparation for tours, replenishment of the troupe. Banionis led the theatre until the year 1988. The performances staged during this time included "Amadeus", "Three sacks of weeds" and "Evening".
In the 1990s, the actor performed in the plays "Mindaugas" by Justinas Marcinkevičius (1994), "On the Golden Lake" by Ernest Thompson (1996), "The Circle" by Somerset Maugham (1996), "Love Letters" by Albert Garni (1997)
Among the awards of Donatas Banionis - the Order of Gediminas III degree (1994), the medal. Khanzhonkov in the nomination "For outstanding contribution to the cinema" (1999), the Russian Friendship Orders (1999) and Honor (2009), the Grand Commander's Cross of the Order of Merit for Lithuania (2004), the National Award of Lithuania in the field of culture and art (2013) ).
In 1999 he became an Honorary Citizen of the city of Panevezys.
He is the author of memoir prose "I've wanted to Act since My Childhood" (2006).
Banionis died on 4 September 2014 from a stroke. He was 90 years old.