Franciska Gaal (born Franciska Silberspitz, 1 February 1903 – 13 August 1972) was a Hungarian cabaret artist and film actress of Jewish heritage. Gaal starred in a popular series of European romantic comedies during the 1930s. After attracting interest in Hollywood she moved there and made three films.
|Died||13 August 1972 (aged 69)|
|Other names||Szidónia Silberspitz, Fanny Zilverstitch|
|Years active||1921–1946 (film)|
|Spouse(s)||Sándor Lestyán (1922–?)|
Francis Dajkovich (1934–1965) (his death)
Gaal debuted in film in Máté gazda és a törpék (1919).
She was groomed by Joe Pasternak as a singer to become a very popular stage and cabaret performer in Central Europe in the 1920s and 1930s.
She made her first film appearances in some Hungarian silent films of the early 1920s, but her cinema career didn't take off until the arrival of sound.
After appearing in several films made in Hungary, Germany and Austria, two of which were directed by Henry Koster, she came to Hollywood to star in Cecil B. De Mille's epic adventure film The Buccaneer, opposite Fredric March. She followed this with the comedy The Girl Downstairs (1938) with Franchot Tone, a remake of her Austrian success Catherine the Last. In 1939, Gaal co-starred with Bing Crosby in the musical Paris Honeymoon.
In 1946, she began work on a new film in Budapest the Soviet-backed Renee XIV with Johannes Heesters and Theo Lingen, but filming was halted during production and was never completed, as another film Der König streikt, also with Theo Lingen and Hans Moser, where she had to play the protagonist role. She moved back to the United States in 1947 with her Budapest-born attorney husband Francis de Dajkovich (died in 1965), but her return attracted little interest in Hollywood. In 1951, she came to Broadway to replace Eva Gabor in The Happy Time.
|1920||A bostonville-i kaland|
|1921||New-York express kábel||Reporter|
|1921||A cornevillei harangok||Serpolette, cselédlány|
|1932||Paprika||Ilona von Takacs|
|1933||Greetings and Kisses, Veronika||Veronika|
|1933||Scandal in Budapest||Eva Balogh|
|1934||A Precocious Girl||Lucie Carell, nicknamed Csibi|
|1934||Peter||17-year old Eva|
|1935||Little Mother||Marie Bonnard|
|1936||Catherine the Last||Katharina, Küchenmädchen|
|1936||Fräulein Lilli||Fräulein Lilli|
|1938||The Girl Downstairs||Katerina Linz|
|1946||Renee XIV||uncompleted, (final film role)|
- "Színház - Gaál Franciska színésznő". Archivum.mtva.hu. Retrieved 5 February 2022.
- [dead link]
- "Francis Dajkovich". Myheritage.com. Retrieved 5 February 2022.
- "May 1947 Passenger list listing her age 44". Ancestry.com.
- Bock, Hans-Michael; Bergfelder, Tim (2009). The Concise Cinegraph: Encyclopaedia of German Cinema. Berghahn Books. p. 144. ISBN 9780857455659. Retrieved 29 August 2018.
- Waldman, Harry; Slide, Anthony (1996). Hollywood and the Foreign Touch: A Dictionary of Foreign Filmmakers and Their Films from America, 1910-1995. Scarecrow Press. pp. 113–114. ISBN 9780810831926. Retrieved 29 August 2018.
- Bock & Bergfelder, p. 144.
- Bock, Hans-Michael & Bergfelder, Tim. The Concise CineGraph. Encyclopedia of German Cinema. Berghahn Books, 2009.