Filmmaker. He studied at the Oriental Institute in Moscow, but dropped out and later decided to study film. In 1954 he applied at the State Institute of Cinematography (VGIK) and was admitted to the film-directing program. He co-wrote the script for The Steamroller and the Violin, which was sold to Mosfilm. This became his graduation project, earning him his diploma in 1960 and winning First Prize at the New York Student Film Festival in 1961. His first feature film was Ivan's Childhood in 1962, which won the Golden Lion award at the Venice Film Festival in the year 1962. In 1965, he directed the film Andrei Rublev, about the life of the fifteenth-century Russian icon painter, which won the FIPRESCI prize at the 1969 Cannes Film Festival. In 1972, he completed Solaris, an adaptation of the novel by Stanisław Lem. The film was presented at the Cannes Film Festival, won the Grand Prix Spécial du Jury and the FIPRESCI prize, and was nominated for the Palme d'Or. The last film he completed in the Soviet Union was Stalker, which was completed in 1979 and won the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury at the Cannes Film Festival. He completed the film Nostalghia in 1983. It won the FIPRESCI prize and the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury at the Cannes Film Festival. He also shared a special prize called Grand Prix du cinéma de creation with Robert Bresson. In the same year, he staged the opera Boris Godunov at the Royal Opera House in London. He spent most of 1984 preparing the film The Sacrifice, which was presented at the Cannes Film Festival and received the Grand Prix Spécial du Jury, the FIPRESCI prize and the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury. He was recognized in the Soviet Union in the Autumn of 1986, shortly before his death, by a retrospective of his films in Moscow. After his death, an entire issue of the film magazine Iskusstvo Kino was devoted to him. He was awarded the Lenin Prize in 1990, one of the highest state honors in the Soviet Union. In 1989 the Andrei Tarkovsky Memorial Prize was established, with its first recipient being the Russian animator Yuriy Norshteyn.
Bio by: Pete Mohney