George Pal

George Pal
Cal Montney / Los Angeles Times


George Pal
Film: East side of the 1700 block of Vine Street
Director | Producer
Born Feb. 1, 1908 in Cegled, Hungary
Died May 2, 1980 of heart attack in Beverly Hills, Calif.

Film producer and director George Pal was considered by many enthusiasts of the genre to be the father of contemporary science-fiction film.

In 1939, Pal signed a contract with Paramount and came to Hollywood the next year to produce cartoons and perfect his pioneering techniques with the Puppetoons, for which he received a special Oscar in 1943.

His first live-action film was "The Great Rupert," which featured an animated, stuffed squirrel as the leading actor—opposite Jimmy Durante.

"Destination Moon" followed. That landmark film—earning an Oscar for special effects in 1950—is regarded as the first Hollywood fantasy to lift off into space from a launching pad based on truly scientific speculation.

During his career, Pal wiped out the city of New York with a tidal wave in "When Worlds Collide," leveled much of Los Angeles, including City Hall in "War of the Worlds," brought "Tom Thumb" to life, sent man into the future in "The Time Machine" and painted a portrait of "7 Faces of Dr. Lao."

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    Academy Awards

    Year Category Work
    1941 Best Short Subject - Cartoon Rhythm in the Ranks Nomination
    1942 Best Short Subject - Cartoon Tulips Shall Grow Nomination
    1943 Best Short Subject - Cartoon The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins Nomination
    1943 Special Award Win
    1944 Best Short Subject - Cartoon And to Think I Saw It on Mulberry Street Nomination
    1945 Best Short Subject - Cartoon Jasper and the Beanstalk Nomination
    1946 Best Short Subject - Cartoon John Henry and the Inky Poo Nomination
    1947 Best Short Subject - Cartoon Tubby the Tuba Nomination

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