Soviet filmmaker Alexander Stolper first worked as a reporter and then a stage director before joining Lev Kuleshov's workshop in 1923. He learned to write screenplays after starting work with the Mezhrabpom-Rus studio in 1927. He received his first screen credit as a scenarist in 1931 with Putevka v zhizn (The Road to Life). Stolper then studied at the State Film Institue (VGIK) under Eisenstein until he graduated in 1938. As a director, Stolper seemed to favor war-themed films. In the mid-'60s, Stolper returned to VGIK to lecture.