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Russian actor Yuri Yakovlev dies at 85

Nov. 30, 2013 at 2:32 PM

MOSCOW, Nov. 30 (UPI) -- Russian theater and film actor Yuri Yakovlev died Saturday in Moscow, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said. He was 85.

The cause of Yakovlev's death wasn't reported.

"Talented actor Yuri Yakovlev is no longer with us," Medvedev announced.

Yakovlev performed with Moscow's Vakhtangov Theatre for more than 60 years -- as Casanova in "Three Ages of Casanova"; Duke Bolingbroke in "Glass of Water"; and Prokofiev in "Lessons of Master" -- ITAR-Tass reported.

He gained fame for his acting skills in 1958 in Ivan Pyryev's "The Idiot," playing Prince Myshkin, the newspaper said.

He appeared on the silver screen in 1973 in "Ivan Vasilyevich Changes His Occupation."

"Yuri Yakovlev, a great actor and a bright person has passed away," Culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky said, expressing his condolences to Yakovlev's family. "This is a very heavy loss for his theater."

Yakovlev could "intricately combine Russian mentality with the great joy of play, something that has always been a distinctive feature of Vakhtangov Theatre actors," said Mikhail Shvydkoi, the president's special representative for international cultural cooperation.

Yakovlev's survivors weren't reported.

He will be buried at Moscow's Novodevichye cemetery.

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