Suslov, Famed Soviet Jewish Cinematographer, Arrives in U.S.

Renowned Soviet cinematographer Mikhail Suslov, whose two-year struggle to emigrate won the attention of Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir, arrived today at New York’s JFK Airport, with the help of United HIAS Service. Until his departure Suslov was regarded as a major figure in the dissident movement and went on a hunger strike to dramatize his position. He was joined by writer Felix Kamov and journalist Evgeny Baras.

The 36-year-old Suslov has made more than 30 films in the Soviet Union. His production of Chekhov’s “The Seagull” won the silver prize for film photography at the 1973 International Film Festival in San Francisco. Another film, “The 6th of June,” about the Russian Revolution, was considered a milestone in the Soviet film industry and was seen by over 40 million Russians.

Suslov had been out of work since applying for an exit visa in 1973. He and his family existed on small amounts of money sent by anonymous friends in America and Europe. During this time, his films were shown throughout the Soviet Union, but his name was deleted from the credits.

Arriving with Suslov were his wife Irina, their 16-year-old son, Vadim, and Mrs. Suslov’s parents and sister. His brother, Ilya a journalist, and parents previously settled in Cleveland, also under HIAS auspices.

Fifty-one other Soviet Jewish emigrants arrived in the United States on the flight with the Suslov family. HIAS has resettled more than 2900 Russian refugees in the United States during the first six months of 1975. They are being resettled in 88 Jewish communities across the nation where local agencies help the emigrants adjust to their new homes.

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