George Fitzmaurice was an American director of French-Dutch ancestry.
After studying the fine arts in Paris, he came to the U.S. and eased his way into Hollywood. He started his career as a set designer for stage productions, which led into his break into film.
Shortly after coming to Hollywood, Fitzmaurice was engaged by various studios to direct numerous productions that were unusually successful at the box office.
Included in his list of early stars were Rudolph Valentino, Vima Banky, Mae Murray and Cary Grant.
Innovations established by Fitzmaurice, especially in technique and lavish sets, soon won the backing of major producers.
European directors, quick to copy American methods, soon began attempting to duplicate his sets, but few succeeded. He had a rare touch, producers said, and the sure hand of an artist.
His films included such well-known works as "The Son of the Sheik" (1926), "Raffles" (1930) and "Mata Hari" (1931).