George Pal
Julius George Marczincsak
1908-1980

1908-1949

Julius George Marczincsak was born on February 1, 1908 in Cegled, Hungary. His parents were Maria and Julius Marczincsak. George's parents divorced and abandoned him at an early age. It would be his grandparents that would take on the job of raising him. George attended Budapest Academy of Arts where he studied architecture. As part of the curriculum students had to spend one year either as a carpenter or a brick layer. George chose carpentry.

"I think working with wood helped me an awful lot with the Puppetoons later on. I think without that experience I would probably never have invented the Puppetoon system."
— George Pal

 

 

He was hired by Hunnia Films in Budapest where he added illustrations to dialog cards used in silent movies. In time George became head of the studio at the age of 21. He married Elisabeth Josepha (Zsoka) Grandjean on June 7, 1930 and shortly moved to Berlin to pursue a film career. He was employed by UFA studios. After a year he left UFA and opened his own studio. It was here that George began the concept of the Puppetoons. He did a stop motion commercial with dancing cigarettes for the Overstolz cigarette company.

In time the cigarettes acquired legs, arms, and eyes. George and Zsoka moved to Prague, and then spent a brief time in Paris before being offered a studio in Eindhoven, Holland. It was in Eindhoven that the first real Puppetoon was created, this was Ship of Ether. The ship was made of glass and was stop motion animated on waves also made of glass. In 1933 the Nazi party was coming into force and the Pals began their attempts to go to the USA.

      The Pals had applied several times for a visa to the U.S. and with the sponsership of Walter Lantz, was finally granted. Arriving in New York, George met an executive from Paramount who had seen one of the Puppetoons and offered him a job producing Puppetoons for them. George opened a studio at 1041 N. McCadden Place in Hollywood and began making his Puppetoons. Here are a few of the people who would be employed by George over the years: Willis O'Brien, Ray Harryhausen, Wah Chang and Gene Warren.


George Pal and Zsoka Pal

Gae Griffith started as the secretary to Pal's business manager, then moved to become Pal's secretary and when George began making full length films became production secretary and finally assistant to the producer.

The last Puppetoon was Romeow and Julicat in 1949.

Some issues of George Pal's Puppetoon Comic Books

 


George Pal with several of his Puppetoon models

Final scene from
Tulips Shall Grow


The Puppetoon Movie on DVD

A compilation of several of George Pal's Puppetoons

 

 

 

 

 

Eagle Lion Productions 1949-1950 Next >>

 

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