Sergei Rakhlin, a Russian-born journalist and a member of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association since 1996, has died. He was 78 years old.
Rakhlin died on Friday after a year-long battle with illness, the HFPA shared in a obituary on Sunday.
“Sergei was a strong advocate for international filmmakers and long pushed for their recognition and inclusion in Hollywood. His passion for films from around the world was only surpassed by his support of the HFPA,” HFPA President Helen Hoehne said in a statement to TheWrap.
Rakhlin joined the HFPA in 1996 and her bylines appeared in Vogue, Variety, Action! and Film Search throughout his career, as well as other publications in Russia, Latvia, Ukraine and Central Asia. He also spent time as a screenwriter and wrote two screenplays that were later made into feature films, including “Brutus” in 2016 and “Witnesses” in 2018.
He served six terms as executive secretary and one term as treasurer of the HFPA and contributed to the production of the Golden Globes between 2008 and 2017. Rakhlin was a long-time member of the Foreign Film Committee (now the Foreign Language Film Committee). English). ), and was also nominated for an Emmy in 2018 for producing the Globes award ceremony.
Rakhlin, also known as the more Americanized “Serge”, was born in Gorky, Russia, in 1943 and settled in Riga, Latvia, when he was 7 years old. He graduated in journalism from the State University of Latvia and worked as a writer. and screenwriter before emigrating to the United States in 1978. He went on to earn a master’s degree from the University of Southern California and worked as a general producer, art director, and talk show host for WMNB TV and Radio Station (New York, Los Angeles, Toronto). Some of his other positions included editor-in-chief of the Panorama newspaper in Los Angeles and a Hollywood analyst for The Voice of America radio station.
Rakhlin was passionate about international cinema and served as a jury member at festivals such as the Kiev International Film Festival, Tallinn Black Nights and others around the world.
He is survived by his wife Emilia, son Nick and daughter-in-law Marina.