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Andre DeToth

Andre DeToth

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Also Known As: Andre Detoth, Endre Toth, Sasvrai Farkasfalvi Tothfalusi Toth Endre Antal Mihaly, Andreas Toth Died: October 27, 2002
Born: May 15, 1913 Cause of Death: aneurysm
Birth Place: Hungary Profession: director, producer, screenwriter, playwright, actor, 2nd unit director, editor, typesetter, journalist, truck driver, painter, sculptor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Born and raised in Hungary, Andre de Toth came to the USA in the 1940s and became established as a workmanlike director whose films, notably his Westerns and films noir, were later hailed for their moody, psychological aspects. A genuinely colorful character, the one-eyed helmer has proven evasive in interviews, particularly in relation to his early life and career and his marriage to screen siren Veronica Lake. The son of a former Hussar turned civil engineer, de Toth disappointed his father by being asked to leave a number of schools and then by deciding not to pursue a military career. Instead, he allegedly showed an early artistic bent, having a one-person art show while in his early teens (he claims to have destroyed the paintings and sculpture). His first play is said to have closed before it opened but led to a meeting with playwright Ferenc Molnar who served as a mentor, introducing de Toth to various high profile individuals and obtaining writing assignments for the youth. After obtaining a law degree, de Toth reportedly entered the Hungarian film industry, working as a camera operator for noted cinematographer Istvan (Stefan) Eiben. During the 1930s, he reportedly lived throughout Europe...

Born and raised in Hungary, Andre de Toth came to the USA in the 1940s and became established as a workmanlike director whose films, notably his Westerns and films noir, were later hailed for their moody, psychological aspects. A genuinely colorful character, the one-eyed helmer has proven evasive in interviews, particularly in relation to his early life and career and his marriage to screen siren Veronica Lake. The son of a former Hussar turned civil engineer, de Toth disappointed his father by being asked to leave a number of schools and then by deciding not to pursue a military career. Instead, he allegedly showed an early artistic bent, having a one-person art show while in his early teens (he claims to have destroyed the paintings and sculpture). His first play is said to have closed before it opened but led to a meeting with playwright Ferenc Molnar who served as a mentor, introducing de Toth to various high profile individuals and obtaining writing assignments for the youth. After obtaining a law degree, de Toth reportedly entered the Hungarian film industry, working as a camera operator for noted cinematographer Istvan (Stefan) Eiben. During the 1930s, he reportedly lived throughout Europe and visited the USA on several occasions. While in London, de Toth worked in several capacities for the Korda brothers before heading to Vienna to work on a script. On one of his trips to Los Angeles, he claims to have done uncredited work on the script for 1937's "The Life of Emile Zola."

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
  The Mongols (1966) Director
2.
  Gold for the Caesars (1964) Director
3.
  Oro Per I Cesari (1962) Director
4.
  Morgan the Pirate (1961) Supv dir
5.
  Man on a String (1960) Director
6.
  Day of the Outlaw (1959) Director
7.
  The Two-Headed Spy (1959) Director
8.
  Monkey on My Back (1957) Director
9.
  Hidden Fear (1957) Director
10.
  The Indian Fighter (1955) Director

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Forever Hollywood (1999) Himself
3.
 Spontaneous Combustion (1989) Vandermeer
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Milestones close milestones

:
As a teenager, had one-person art show; later destroyed his paintings and sculpture
:
Had first play produced at age 18
1931:
Entered Hungarian film industry (date approximate)
:
Worked at Hunnia Studios
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Apprenticed as cameraman for cinematographer Istvan (Stefan) Eiben
1937:
First film as screenwriter ("from story"), "Falu rossza/Evil Village"
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During the 1930s, made several visits to Hollywood
1939:
Directed five Hungarian features credited as Endre Toth; the first, "Toprini nasz/Wedding in Toprin"
1939:
Moved to England
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Worked as 2nd unit director for Alexander Korda on several films; only received credit on "The Jungle Book" (1942); reported to have worked on "Four Feathers" (1939), "The Thief of Bagdad" (1940) and "Sahara" (1943), among others
1942:
Relocated to Los Angeles
1943:
Hollywood directing debut, "Passport to Suez"
1944:
Signed to a one picture contract with Columbia; helmed the war drama "None Shall Escape"
1947:
Joined Enterprise Productions
1947:
Directed first Western, "Ramrod", starring Joel McCrea and Veronica Lake
1948:
Sued by Columbia for nonpayment of part of his salary paid by Warner Bros; amount in question was roughly $1,400; under terms of his contract, de Toth had to pay Columbia a percentage of any salaries he earned on loan-outs
1950:
Shared Oscar nomination with William Bowers for the Best Motion Picture Story for "The Gunfighter"
1951:
First of six films with Randolph Scott, the Western "Man in the Saddle"
1953:
Helmed "House of Wax", a 3-D remake of "Mystery of the Wax Museum"; first horror role for Vincent Price
1957:
Directed the drug addiction drama "Monkey on My Back"
:
Directed episodes of TV series like "Maverick", "77 Sunset Strip" and "The Westerner" in the late 1950s and early 1960s
1962:
Acted as a consultant to David Lean on "Lawrence of Arabia"; reportedly "found locations" and did uncredited 2nd unit work
1964:
Seriously injured in a skiing accident
:
Reportedly shot second unit work on James Bond films
1968:
Executive produced and directed "Play Dirty"; replaced Rene Clement as director
1970:
Produced "El Condor", directed by John Guillermin
1976:
Made film on board minehunter HMS Bronington with HRH Prince Charles of England
1978:
Worked as uncredited director of the flying sequences of "Superman"; some sequences also used in "Superman II"
1980:
Reportedly offered assistance on the feature "The Lion of the Desert"
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Education

Hungarian Royal University: - 1934

Notes

"My birthdate changes between 1900 and 1920 according to different publications, but the fact remains I was born. The truth is, I don't remember the event. I was told by a reliable source that it was 1913, May 15, in Hungary." --de Toth

On his uncredited work on "Superman", de Toth told Anthony Slide: "They earned the Oscars and I walked away with the best: happy memories."

De Toth's motto was "Don't be careful, have fun."

"I am interested in the most complex things I know of--people. And they're very intricate in their relationships to each other. ... Real violence has nothing to do with hardware, blowing up buildings. Real violence is from within--the violence of people, the violence of Raymond Burr in 'Pitfall'" --Andre de Toth quoted in Moviemaker, April 1998.

"I'll do something one day I'll be proud of. ... I haven't really lived up to what I would like to do. Not yet." --de Toth in his 80s, quoted in Moviemaker, April 1998.

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Veronica Lake. Married on December 17, 1944; separated in 1951; divorced in June 1952.
wife:
Ann Green. Screenwriter.

Family close complete family listing

step-daughter:
Elaine Detlie.
son:
Anthony Michael de Toth III. Born on October 25, 1945.
daughter:
Diana de Toth. Born on October 16, 1948.

Bibliography close complete biography

"Fragments: Portraits From the Inside"
"De Toth on de Toth: Putting the Drama in Front of the Camera: Conversations with Anthony Slide" Faber and Faber

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