The influence of Arnold Schwarzenegger reaches far.
In 1986, Alexander Aleksandrovich – a skinny Russian 15-year-old – witnessed Arnold Schwarzenegger’s performance in “Conan the Destroyer,” and his life was forever changed.
He saw Arnold’s massive physique and electric on-screen charisma and new immediately what he wanted to do with his life. Unfortunately, he also faced many problems that most bodybuilders and aspiring movie stars never have to overcome.
“It was hard, actually, because bodybuilding was illegal in Soviet Union,” Nevsky told PressTelegram, “and Hollywood was also kind of illegal.”
Without a promising path, Aleksandr nonetheless embarked on a typical adolescent bodybuilding journey, working out, posing, researching, and improving. In 1993, he graduated from Moscow State University of Management as an established bodybuilder, and a Russian TV network decided to film a documentary about him. By now his last name had changed to Nevsky, at the request of his father, who did not want his son to use the family name for bodybuilding.
“What I said in the documentary was it doesn’t matter how big are your muscles, it’s very important to have nice brain,” Nevsky said.
At the time in Russia, there were only a handful of networks, so the program received millions of views, and Nevskys star-power exploded overnight.
“In the beginning of the ’90s you could buy any movie on pirated video. So I watched all Arnold movies, all (Sylvester) Stallone movies, all Chuck Norris, Jean-Claude Van Damme.”
In 1999, Nevsky moved to L.A.
Ralf Moeller arranged Nevsky’s introduction to Schwarzenegger, and Nevsky brought the legend a gift – a memoir signed for Schwarzenegger by Mikhail Gorbachev.
“My English was very limited but I remember Ralf telling me, ‘Ask Arnold something,’ ask him what I should do,’” Nevsky says. “And he told me: ‘You know, if you really want to try here, what you should do is create a situation where you’re not depending on Hollywood, where you can do things yourself. And don’t forget your audience which you left over there. Don’t forget yourself.’”
Now Nevsky has produced numerous films including “Maximum Impact,” which is expected to arrive in U.S. theaters later in 2018.
“My main point, my life, it’s a fairy tale,” Nevsky says. “And if I made it, if skinny kid from good old Soviet Union made it, your readers, who probably a lot of them dream about Hollywood, about movies, they also have a chance. Everyone has a chance.”