Old Khottabych

Starik Khottabych (Russian: Старик Хоттабыч, Old Man Khottabych or Old Khottabych) is a Sovcolor Soviet fantasy film produced in the USSR by Goskino at Kinostudyia Lenfilm (Lenfilm Studio) in 1956, based on a children's book of the same name by Lazar Lagin who also wrote the film's script, and directed by Gennadi Kazansky. In the United States, the film was released theatrically by Sovexportfilm, with English subtitles, under the title The Flying Carpet through Artkino Pictures in 1960.

Starik Khottabych
Old Khottabych.jpg
Original film poster
Directed byGennadi Kazansky
L. Mahtin
Written byLazar Lagin
Screenplay byLazar Lagin
Based onOld Khottabych by Lazar Lagin
Produced byT. Samoznayeva [Production Director]
StarringNikolay Volkov [ru]
Alexey Litvinov
Gennady Khudyakov
CinematographyM. Shurukov
Music byNadezhda Simonyan
Distributed byGoskino
Release date
Running time
86 min.
CountryUnion of Soviet Socialist Republics

Plot summaryEdit

Volka,[1] a 12-year-old Soviet Young Pioneer, discovers an ancient vessel at the bottom of a river. When he opens it, a genie emerges. He calls himself Hassan Abdul-rahman ibn Khottab, but Volka renames him Khottabych. The name Khottabych is derived from the Arabic name Khattab with the Russian patronymic suffix -ych, yielding a Russian equivalent of ibn-Khottab (son of Khottab). Khottabych later claims to be 3,732 years and 5 months old. The grateful Khottabych is ready to fulfill any of Volka's wishes, but it becomes clear that Volka should use the powers of the genie carefully, for they can have some unforeseen undesirable results.


Production personnelEdit

Special effects team:

Production notesEdit

The novel is influenced by the tale of Aladdin and his magical lamp, and it was quite popular with Soviet kids. There were two major versions of the novel - the original was published in 1938, and a revised version followed in 1955. This later version was the basis of the 1956 film. Revisions to the novel were made by Lagin himself in order to incorporate the changes taking place in the USSR and the rest of the world into the narrative, including some ideological anti-capitalistic elements. The original edition has been republished in the Post-Soviet era.



Early 1990s - Russkoje Video (VHS)

December 2003 - Russian Cinema Councill (DVD). The disc contains four spoken languages in Dolby Digital 5.1: Russian original, English voice-over, French and Arabic languages; subtitles in Russian, English, French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Japanese, Swedish, German, Portuguese, Hebrew, Arabic and Chinese. It also contains special features "Monologue in the Intermission", "Another Genie", filmography and a photo album.

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit


  1. ^ Volka (Willie) is a diminutive form of the name Volya which also was a diminutive name of Vladimir: "Yesterday, a pioneer named Vladimir Kostylkov came to his district militia station and handed the officer on duty a treasure consisting of antique gold objects which he found on the bottom of the river, in a very deep place." [1]