Nerys Myk wrote:
Would a Russian/Soviet actor in the 1960s be allowed to pop over to Hollywood to appear in a film or TV series, the same way a Western European actor would?
If you were to hold me to the 60's, then yes, I would say that there's a problem. If we're talking the 80's, and maybe the 70's, I would say it would have been possible. Maybe not a longstanding TV series, but in movies.
It's true that in any Soviet era, western Europeans had far greater access to being cinematic imports. But once Soviet cinematographers started winning international awards, talks of American/Soviet co-productions, such an idea of a main character being literally a Soviet was not too far-fetched.
There have been films made in the West that feature Russian characters in leading roles. Two come to mind:
1979 gave us Meteor
, with Brian Kieth and Natalie Wood playing Russians
1983 had Gorky Park
starring William Hurt as member of the Militsiya. Most of the characters are Russian.
The Blue Bird from 1976 was a Soviet-American production filmed in the USSR.
On the acting front, dancers turned actors Alexander Godunov and Mikhail Baryshnikov spring to mind. Mila Jovovich, Mila Kunis and Anton Yelchin were all born in the USSR. Elya Baskin has made a solid career as Hollywood's go to Russian. Since the Russian mob is a popular bad guy, a lot of Russian actors are finding work play mob bosses and enforcers.