Bata Živojinović

For the Serbian poet, see Velimir Živojinović Massuka.
Velimir "Bata" Živojinović
Велимир "Бата" Живојиновић

Živojinović at a China trade signing in Belgrade on 14 June 2008.
Born Velimir Živojinović
(1933-06-05)5 June 1933
Koraćica, Danube Banovina, Kingdom of Yugoslavia
Died 22 May 2016(2016-05-22) (aged 82)
Belgrade, Serbia
Years active 1955–2013
Spouse(s) Lula Živojinović (m. 1960–2016)
  • Pula Film Festival of Yugoslavian Films: 1962 (silver), 1965, 1967 (gold)
  • Pula Film Festival of Yugoslavian Films: 1979 (best actor), 1997 (life-time achievement award)
  • Various: Belgrade (1972, 2006), Palić (2005), Niš (2005)...

Velimir "Bata" Živojinović (Serbian Cyrillic: Велимир "Бата" Живојиновић; 5 June 1933 – 22 May 2016) was a Serbian actor and politician.


Živojinović was born in the village of Koraćica under the Kosmaj mountain, near Mladenovac. After graduating from acting schools in Niš and Novi Sad, he enrolled at the Drama Academy in Belgrade.

Živojinović preferred acting in theatre to acting on screen, and made his screen debut in 1955 film Pesma sa Kumbare was the beginning of a prolific film career. Bata Živojinović's played both heroes and villains and switched between leading and supporting roles. The zenith of his popularity came with WW2-themed action films in the 1970s. One of his best known films from that period was Valter brani Sarajevo (Walter Defends Sarajevo), which gained major success in China.

He was also known for his close friendship with the Croatian actor Boris Dvornik. In 1991 Živojinović and Dvornik renounced each other in a series of open letters, which was a gesture often seen as symbolic of the breakup of Yugoslavia. In 2004 it was reported that the two men tried to reconcile. In 2006, the two men publicly reconciled on TV via a video link between Split and Belgrade. The actor said that "In the last few years there hasn't been hatred between us", and Dvornik completed the sentence "only a misunderstanding".[1]

In 1990 he was elected for the Serbian Parliament, as a member of the Socialist Party of Serbia. He was a candidate in the September-October 2002 presidential election, receiving 3.27% of the popular vote.[2]

Illness and death

Živojinović had a heart attack in October 2006 and suffered from gangrene in his right foot for about three years afterwards. Doctors initially wanted to amputate the limb, but he traveled to Cuba, where his daughter lives, and within the 25 days that he spent being treated there, was cured of the gangrene by Doctor Montekin, who has also treated Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez.[3]

On 4 July 2012 he suffered a severe stroke and was transported to a hospital specializing in cerebrovascular diseases called Sveti Sava in Belgrade. He was treated in the intensive care unit and was reported to be in critical condition. Reports also stated that after the stroke he was in a coma for two days. [4][5] He remained in critical condition in the hospital for about three weeks.[6][7] After treatment for the stroke, he was discharged from the hospital, but reported to not be able to walk without assistance and that it was difficult for him to speak. [8][9]

On 6 May 2016, after being transferred from Sveti Sava hospital to "KBC Dedinje", he was subject of an emergency surgery which, in order to stop his gangrene, resulted in a leg amputation.[10] He died on 22 May 2016 in Belgrade.[11]

Awards and honours

Živojinović was awarded Golden Arena for Best Actor at the Pula Film Festival, the most prestigious film award in the SFR Yugoslavia, three times: in 1965, 1967 and 1972. He won the award for Best Actor at the 11th Moscow International Film Festival in 1979 for his role in Moment.[12] In 1981 he was a member of the jury at the 12th Moscow International Film Festival.[13]

He was the recipient of the October Award of the City of Belgrade in 1972, and the 7th July Award of Serbia in 1981. In August 1993, he was awarded Life Achievement Award "Slavica".[14]

Selected filmography

See also


  1. "Bata i Boris: Naša pomirba odnosi se na cjelokupni hrvatski i srpski narod" [Bata and Boris: Our reconciliation applies to all Croatian and Serbian people]. (in Croatian). 2 November 2006. Retrieved 21 June 2010.
  2. "IFES Election Guide | Elections: Serbia Pres Sept 29, 2002". Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  3. "Velimir Bata Živojinović imao moždani udar i u kritičnom je stanju" [Velimir Bata Živojinović had a stroke, and is in a critical condition]. (in Serbian). 6 July 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  4. "Bata Živojinović bolje, probudio se iz kome" [Bata Živojinović is feeling better, woke up from a coma]. Slobodna Dalmacija (in Serbian). 6 July 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  5. "Bata Živojinović u kritičnom stanju" [Bata Živojinović is in a critical condition]. (in Serbian). 5 July 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  6. "Bata Živojinović i dalje kritično" [Bata Živojinović still a critical condition]. Glas Srpske (in Serbian). 20 July 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  7. "Bata Živojinović i dalje u teškom stanju" [Bata Živojinović still in serious condition]. (in Serbian). 20 July 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  8. "Bata Živojinović neće moći samostalno da hoda" [Bata Živojinović won't be able to walk on his own]. Svet Plus (in Serbian). 26 July 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  9. "Bata Živojinović: Dobiću i ovu bitku" [Bata Živojinović: I'll win this battle too]. Svet Plus (in Serbian). 24 July 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  10. "BATA ŽIVOJINOVIĆ U TEŠKOM STANJU: Legendarnom glumcu amputirali nogu, da bi preživeo!" [BATA ŽIVOJINOVIĆ IN SERIOUS CONDITION: The legendary actor had to have his leg amputated to save his life!]. INFORMER (in Serbian). 9 May 2016. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  11. "Преминуо Бата Живојиновић" [Bata Živojinović passed away] (in Serbian). 22 May 2016. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  12. "11th Moscow International Film Festival (1979)". MIFF. Archived from the original on 3 April 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2013.
  13. "12th Moscow International Film Festival (1981)". MIFF. Archived from the original on 21 April 2013. Retrieved 21 January 2013.
  14. "Umro Bata Živojinović". B92. 23 May 2016.

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