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Alexandr Kajdanovsky (1946-1995) was a Russian actor, director and screenwriter known for his performances in Andrei Tarkovsky's films. Kajdanovsky was discovered by the famous Russian director Nikita Mikhalkov who gave him the lead role in 'At Home Among Strangers, a Stranger Among His Own' (1974). He also played the lead role in Andrei Tarkovsky's 'Stalker' (1979). After attending Tarkovsky's writing seminars, Kajdanovsky also wrote and directed his own film 'A Simple Death' (1985).
Keira Knightley was born in 1985 in London. She made her acting debut at the age of nine in 'A Village Affair' (1994). By 1999 she appeared in her first Hollywood blockbuster opposite Natalie Portman in 'Star Wars: The Phantom Menace'. Since then she portrayed a variety of characters, including a tomboy footballer in 'Bend it Like Beckham' (2002) and an Oscar-nominated portrayal of Elizabeth Bennet in 'Pride & Prejudice' (2005).
A successful career in modelling soon led to film roles for Diane Kruger. A striking screen presence, she is adept at portraying strong characters troubled by doubt or fear. She held her own against Christopher Lambert and Dennis Hopper in average thriller 'The Piano Player' (2002) but was better in her then husband Guillaume Canet’s 'Whatever You Say' (2002). It’s not inconceivable that she might have launched a thousand ships had she been the real Helen, rather than the screen version in Wolfgang Peterson’s suitably epic 'Troy' (2004). She was fun in the enjoyable caper 'National Treasure' (2004) but looked as strained as the other cast members in its redundant 2007 sequel. Far better was her performance in 'Anything for Her' (2008) as a wrongfully imprisoned woman conspiring a prison break with the aid of her loving husband. Then came 'Inglourious Basterds' (2009) and her portrayal of an Allied spy. She is excellent in 'Farewell' and 'Mr. Nobody' (both 2009), the sole highlight of 'Unknown' (2011) and compelling as a businessman’s wife in 'Disorder' (2015) who wonders if the greatest danger to bother her and her son is the man hired to protect them. She is also impressive in the American version of the popular Scandinavian crime series 'The Bridge' (2013-14).