Since she came here from Moscow in 1975 to locate her father—and ended up finding both him and a husband—Russian actress Victoria Fyodorova has also discovered the benefits of capitalism. “Women in America are lucky,” she says. “They can choose their makeup—for dry skin or oily skin and for wrinkles. In Russia you can’t buy shampoo for just your kind of hair or makeup for your type of skin. The government says only, ‘Ladies, we’re working on it.’ ”
The cosmetic gap is not simply academic for Victoria. Next month her face will start appearing in fashion magazines on behalf of Alexandra de Mark off cosmetics. The ad will appear in black-and-white—thus graying the loveliest green eyes west of the Urals—and marks still another step in the Americanization of Victoria, 30. She first made headlines when she flew to Florida for a reunion with her father, retired Admiral Jackson Tate. (His World War II love affair with Russian film star Zoya Fyodorova produced Victoria, but he was expelled from the country before she was born. Zoya went to prison for eight years for consorting with the American officer.)
After coming to the U.S., Victoria met a Pan Am pilot, Fred Pouy, 38. He had read about her (in PEOPLE, Feb. 17, 1975) and offered to fly a poodle Victoria had received back to the USSR. Wed three months later, they settled in Stamford, Conn. and last May had a son, Christopher Alexander.
Now Victoria is trying to renew the career that made her a star in 17 Soviet films. She’s negotiating to play both herself and her mother in an autobiographical film, and has also talked with NBC about a commentator’s role at the 1980 Moscow Olympics.
Meanwhile, she is settling into her bourgeois suburban life. It includes Manhattan shopping sprees, jaunts on her husband’s powerboat, learning to play “Pong” and cooking (sometimes old Russian favorites like shchi, or cabbage soup) in her Radarange kitchen. When she arrived here, says Victoria (known to her American friends as Vicky), “I knew not more than 20 words of English.” By now she has read Agatha Christie’s Curtain and speaks the language well, if not fluently.
Every week Victoria telephones her mother, who is in Moscow and still acting at 65, and also sends her Frank Sinatra and Ray Conniff records. When Fred flies the New York-to-Moscow run, he attends the Bolshoi with Zoya. The Pouys (rhymes with boys) hope to visit the USSR in June (all need visas, even though Victoria is still a Soviet citizen). Victoria also keeps in touch with her father, who is 79 and ill with a heart condition.
Despite public concern over U.S.-USSR relations, Victoria won’t comment on the subject. “I’m unpolitical—not because I’m afraid to talk, but because I’m much more comfortable in my own profession.” She does, however, occasionally marvel at how her life has changed. “I never said goodbye to Russia,” she says. “I left it for three months and was sure I’d be back.”