The famous illustrator and film director Gene Deitch passed away in Prague last Thursday, 16 April. He was 95.

Gene Deitch
Gene Deitch passed away at the age of 95.

When being interviewed by The Associated Press, Petr Himmel said that Gene’s death came unexpectedly in his own apartment in Little Quarter neighborhood, Prague. However, the Czech publisher didn’t give any further detail.

Remembering Gene Deitch, fans can list a series of his well-known movies such as “Munro”, “Tom Terrific”, “Sidney’s Family Tree”, and two series of legend comedy short films including “Tom and Jerry” and “Popeye the Sailor”.

Back in 1960, his “Munro” was awarded as the Best Animated Short Film. 4 years later, Gene Deitch once again succeeded with two nominations for “How to Avoid Friendship” and “Here’s Nudnik”.

Gene Deitch Animator
He was drawing the Tom Terrific cartoon series.

“Tom Terrific” - the animated series that includes 26 stories - was created by the talented animator Gene Deitch in 1957. One year later, he co-operated with Art Bartsch to produce “Sidney’s Family Tree”. This theatrical cartoon earned him another nomination for an Academy Award.

Gene Deitch was born on August 08, 1924, in Chicago. In 1959, he came to Prague and met his life’s destiny, Zdenka. And then, instead of leaving Prague after 10 days, he decided to marry her and live in the capital of Czechoslovakia.

Two of the most famous series in his whole career are “Tom and Jerry” and “Popeye the Sailor”. The first series includes 13 episodes, and as for the second series, he just directed some.

In 2004, Gene Deitch won the Winsor McCay Award for what he contributed to the development of the animation world.

Until the end of his life, he lived a happy life with his love and wife. They have three sons, Kim, Simon, and Seth. All of them work as illustrators and cartoonists.