Love, Antosha – the artist, the life and the legacy


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When young actors die before their time, their memory can often find itself attached to the manner of their death rather than the talent, energy and creativity of their life. The public obsession with the final moments of public figures, especially those classed as idols, has haunted the memory of actors ranging from River Phoenix to Paul Walker and Heath Ledger. When the world lost Anton Yelchin in 2016 through a random accident, I was concerned his memory would be treated the same as the faulty jeep and immovable gate dominated the news rather than the talent lost way too soon. Thankfully, Love, Antosha has no intention of dwelling on the tragedy of Anton’s death. Instead, this beautiful documentary opts to celebrate his creativity, talent, artistry and enthusiasm for film.

Director Garret Price’s heartfelt and loving documentary celebrates one of the finest young actors of his generation. Anton was a young man who was continually and unfairly referred to as a rising star, despite an extensive body of work that equalled many Hollywood legends by the age of twenty-seven. Here Price tells Anton’s story through friends, family, home video footage, diary readings and photography, providing us with a kaleidoscope of insights that embody Anton’s zest for life.


The only son of Russian figure skaters Irina and Viktor Yelchin, Anton or Antosha benefited greatly from the new life his parents sought in America. The couple had left their home country after Antosha’s birth due to rising antisemitism, and despite the family’s difficult decision to leave Russia, the joy of giving their only son the freedom to create trumped any concerns. It wasn’t long before the energetic young Antosha found a love of art, photography and acting, his passion and drive leading to acting lessons followed by commercials and eventually small TV roles.

Antosha thrived on learning, experimentation and artistic flare, his passion for movies, filming and photography growing as he progressed from a boy to a teen. Here, Price reflects on this transition through the lens of old home videos Anton made with friends and engaging, entertaining and confident monologues in his bedroom. Anton’s love of film, art and literature was all-encompassing as he explored every stage of the filmmaking process, from direction to photography, music and performance. By the time he reached his twenties, Anton had experimented with photography and music production alongside his growing portfolio of acting roles. However, he also kept his home life private, especially his teenage diagnosis of Cystic Fibrosis.


One can only imagine the effect this diagnosis as a teen had on his vision of the world around him as he battled his condition in every performance. But, his desire to experience and love the artistic world around him eclipsed the potential barriers he faced. Although Love, Antosha never shies away from reflecting on his darker moments, these moments are embedded in his relentless desire to live life to the maximum, his creativity and need for expression pushing him to achieve far more than many of his contemporaries.

Throughout his career, Anton Yelchin appeared in 69 films and TV shows. His body of work ranges from Taken to Star Trek, Hearts in Atlantis and Like Crazy. Anton’s passion, drive, and talent helped create an extraordinary collection of film, music and TV, and while we may never know the director, he would have become through his self-penned screenplay, Travis. Antosha continues to inspire new generations of actors and filmmakers.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Directed By: Garret Price

Featuring:  Anton YelchinJ.J. AbramsSofia Boutella, John Cho, Willem Dafoe, Jodie Foster

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