(written from a Production point of view)
Born in Moscow, Lychnikoff received a Master of Arts in acting from the Moscow State Lunacharsky Academy of Theatrical Arts. He performed in several stage productions in Moscow before opting to continue his acting career in the United States. He trained under such actors as Star Trek: The Original Series guest star Jeff Corey and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine guest actor Jonathan Banks.
Lychnikoff's first television work was a 1996 episode of NYPD Blue entitled "Burnin' Love". In addition to series regular Gordon Clapp, other Star Trek performers who appeared in this episode were Tommy "Tiny" Lister, Jr. and Rick Worthy. Lychnikoff made a return to NYPD Blue in 2000, appearing in an episode with Raymond Cruz.
Between 1996 and 2000, Lychnikoff appeared on such shows as Dark Skies (with Art Chudabala, Brian Cousins, Jennifer Hetrick, and Star Trek: Voyager's Jeri Ryan), Michael Hayes (with Theodore Bikel), C-16: FBI (with Zach Grenier, Matt Malloy, and Glenn Morshower), Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction (hosted by Jonathan Frakes), Nash Bridges (with Stephen Lee, Scott Leva and Athena Massey), and Buffy the Vampire Slayer (starring James Marsters).
In 2001, Lychnkikoff starred with his future Deadwood co-star and fellow Trek alum Titus Welliver in the short-lived CBS series Big Apple. The following year, Lychnikoff appeared in an episode of Alias, the popular ABC series created by Star Trek director and producer J.J. Abrams. The episode in which he appeared, "Passage: Part 1," also featured Terry O'Quinn in his recurring role as FBI Assistant Director Kendall.
Since 2002, Lychnikoff has guest-starred on such shows as The Agency (with David Clennon, Ronny Cox and Gary Graham), Without a Trace (starring Enrique Murciano), CSI: Miami (with Salli Elise Richardson and Boris Krutonog), She Spies (with Faith Minton), Threat Matrix (in an episode with Denise Crosby), The Shield (with Leonard Kelly-Young), CSI: NY (with Robert Joy and Mark Kiely), Chuck (starring Bonita Friedericy and Tony Todd), My Own Worst Enemy (starring Christian Slater, Mädchen Amick, and Alfre Woodard), and Lie to Me (with Spencer Garrett).
However, to date, Lychnikov is perhaps best known for his recurring appearances as telegraph operator Blazanov on the HBO series Deadwood (2004-2006), working with the likes of Jim Beaver, Larry Cedar, Dennis Christopher, Gordon Clapp, Tim de Zarn, Brad Dourif, Allan Graf, Zach Grenier, Michael Harney, Paula Malcomson, Tzi Ma, Leon Rippy, Franc Ross, Maury Sterling, Titus Welliver and Keone Young.
In 2010, Lychnikoff worked with Robert Picardo on a pilot for a potential CBS series called The Odds. He also guest-starred as a Russian baby smuggler in an episode of NBC's Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and as a jewelry store owner on CBS' The Defenders (with Leonard Kelly-Young, Robert Pine, and Raphael Sbarge). He has also been working again with J.J. Abrams, shooting episodes of NBC's Undercovers, which Abrams co-created. In 2012 he had a recurring guest role as the International Space Station cosmonaut Dimitri in another CBS series, The Big Bang Theory.
Lychnikoff's early film credits include small roles in the 1997 thrillers Air Force One (also featuring Boris Krutonog, Glenn Morshower, Bill Smitrovich and Dean Stockwell), Playing God (with Tracey Walter and the aforementioned Keone Young), the direct-to-video release, Crash Dive (with Reiner Schöne and Michael Cavanaugh), the 2005 comedy Fun with Dick and Jane, and the 2006 crime drama Miami Vice. In 2007, he had major roles in the movies Trade and A Thousdand Years of Good Prayers and appeared in the acclaimed drama Charlie Wilson's War. The latter film also featured Cyia Batten, Brian Markinson, and Lychnikoff's Star Trek co-star, Rachel Nichols.
Prior to Star Trek, Lychnikoff worked with J.J. Abrams on the hit 2008 film Cloverfield, which Abrams produced. This film also featured Kelvin Yu, one of Lychnikoff's Star Trek co-stars. Star Trek was not the only 2009 blockbuster in which Lychnikoff appeared, as he was also seen as a Russian soldier in Steven Spielberg's Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Alan Dale had a role in this film, as well.
Lychnikoff also co-starred with John Fleck in the 2009 independent film The Perfect Sleep. His upcoming film projects include Valley of the Sun (with Daniel Zacapa) and Bucky Larson:Born to Be a Star costarring Miriam Flynn (with stunts coordinated by Gary Guercio). Lychnikoff subsequently filmed the 2013 film A Good Day to Die Hard. Lychnikoff shared the screen with Trek icon and series and film star Patrick Stewart as the Russian general as the film's villain.
Lychnikoff still expands his stage experiences not only as an actor, but also as director and producer. His play "The Shelter" at the Odyssey Theater in Los Angeles was nominated for five Ovation Awards in 2006.
Lychnikoff and Glenn Morshower both provided additional voices on the 2010 video game Singularity.