Ivan Nikolai Desnitskij was born on December 28, 1922 in Peking, China. Ivan was the son of a Russian diplomat. He interned at a German labor camp during World War II and later studied acting in Paris and first appeared on stage in France at the Theatre de la Michodiere. As Ivan Desny he appeared in post-war French films as a debonair leading man, as well as doing occasional work as a costume and set designer. Bilingual in French and German he went on to international co-productions in France, Germany and Italy acting in more than 150 films. Among Desny’s best remembered appearances was in the 1950 film “Madeleine” by the English director David Lean. Desny appeared in his only the Euro-western “Guns for San Sebastian” (1967) as Colonel Calleja with Anthony Quinn and Charles Bronson. He also appeared in the German, Polish, Russian co-produced TV series “The Alaska Kid” (1991) as Baron von Schroeder. Desny died in Ascona, Switzerland on April, 13, 2002. Today we remember Ivan Desny on what would have been his 90th birthday.
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