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Joseph Pasternak (September 19, 1901September 13, 1991) was a Hungarianmarker-born Americanmarker film director in Hollywoodmarker.

Born to a Jewish family in Szilágysomlyó, Austria-Hungary (now Şimleu Silvaniei, Sălaj County, Romaniamarker), Pasternak was a successful film producer in Germanymarker and Austriamarker by the time he was 28 years old.

Pasternak worked for Universal Pictures in Europe, where he made German-language musicals for the international market. He hit upon a successful formula, building light musical comedies around an adolescent soprano (Franciska Gaal). Following the establishment of the Nazi regime, Pasternak emigrated to Universal's Hollywood studio in 1936. He adapted his usual format for English-speaking audiences, casting 14-year-old Canadianmarker singer Deanna Durbin in Three Smart Girls. The film became a huge hit and saved Universal from bankruptcy. Pasternak produced a string of Durbin musicals, and soon discovered another talented soprano, Gloria Jean. who began her own successful series in 1939. Pasternak proved to be a real asset for the studio, generating a number of popular films through 1941, including Destry Rides Again and Seven Sinners.

In 1941 Pasternak moved to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, where he continued to produce operetta films, featuring the rich singing voices of Kathryn Grayson, Jane Powell, and Mario Lanza. His biggest MGM success came with The Great Caruso. He continued to make musicals for MGM into the 1960s, with Elvis Presley or Connie Francis.

His career as a film producer spanned 40 years and earned him two Oscar nominations and three Golden Globe Award nominations. He retired in 1968, having produced more than ninety feature-length films as well as three Academy Award shows. For his contribution to the motion picture industry, Joe Pasternak has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Famemarker at 1541 N. Vine Street.

He was also an enthusiastic amateur chef, and he wrote a book Cooking with Love and Paprika (published in 1966).

Pasternak is the father of Michael Joseph Pasternak, the 1960s radio disk jockey known as Emperor Rosko; Jeff Pasternak, a playwright and songwriter; and Peter Pasternak, a music industry professional.

Joe Pasternak died from complications arising from Parkinson's disease only a few days shy of his 90th birthday. He is interred in the Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery in Culver City, Californiamarker.

He is related to the Russian author Boris Pasternak.

Partial filmography



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