Emil Loteanu (November 6, 1936 – April 18, 2003) was a renowned film director, film writer and writer (poetry and short stories) from Moldova.
Loteanu was born in Clocuşna, Hotin County, Kingdom of Romania (now Ocniţa district, Moldova Republic). After the annexation of Bessarabia by the USSR in 1944, Emil remained in Rădăuţi, together with his father. He studied at St. Sava College in Bucharest and after the death of his father in 1949 he illegally went in Moldova, but he was caught and handed over to Romanian border guards, who sent him to Bucharest, where his mother worked at the Soviet Embassy. In 1952 he asked to be repatriated and lived his early life on the streets, sleeping in warehouses and hostels. Between 1953-1954 was an actor at the Drama Theater "Pushkin" from Chişinău. He attended acting classes at the School of the Theater Academy of Art (MHAT) in Moscow (1954-1956) and directing at the Union Institute of Cinematography (VGIK) in in Moscow (1956-1962). After graduating, Loteanu was hired in 1962 to Moldova-Film studio, working in the period 1973 to 1983 as director at the Mosfilm Studio in Moscow. In 1968 he joined the CPSU.
He made his directorial debut with Bolshaya gora in 1960, then his debut as a writer of feature films was in 1963, with Aşteptaţi-ne în zori (Expect us at dawn, 1963) at the Moldova Film Studio, and continued to make films there until 1975, when he joined Mosfilm. With films such as Lăutarii (English: The Fiddlers, 1971), Şatra (Russian: Tabor ukhodit v nebo English: Queen of the Gypsies, 1975), Gingaşa şi tandra mea fiară (Russian: Moy laskovyy i nezhnyy zver, English: A Hunting Accident, 1977), and Anna Pavlova (1983) Loteanu began to attract international attention. For his films, he received prizes at film festivals in San Sebastian, Naples, Milan, Belgrade, Minsk, Prague, Paris.
Between 1987-1992 Loteanu was president of the 'Filmmakers Union of Moldova'. He was instrumental in the formation of two promotions for film directors in the 'Upper School of Directing'. He founded the 'Phoenix-M Association of Experimental Creation', the theater and film magazine 'Magic Lantern', and was author of the television show 'Searching for a Star'. Emil Loteanu taught at the 'Art Institute of Chişinău'; among the young actors trained by Emil Loteanu were Svetlana Toma, Grigore Grigoriu, and many other.
He received the titles of 'Honored Master of Art in Moldova' (1969), 'People's Artist of Russian Federation' (1980), 'Honorary member of the International Academy of Film Nike'. He also received the 'State Prize' and the 'Order of the Republic'. In 2001, received the 'Award for Excellence in Art Directing', awarded at the Romanian Athenaeum in Bucharest.