December 15, 1931|
Watertown, Connecticut, U.S.
|Died||12 January 2002
Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, USA
|Occupation||Animator and director|
Born in Watertown, Connecticut, but raised in New York City, Pintoff originally began as a jazz trumpeter who taught painting and design at Michigan State University. However, he had always shown an interest in the animation of film and began writing in 1956.
His career took off in 1957, when he wrote the script for Flebus, followed by 1959 as a producer for the animated short film, The Violinist. Narrated by Carl Reiner, the film earned Pintoff an Oscar nomination and illustrated a promising young career in directing film ahead of him.
On television, Pintoff directed many episodes of popular television series, including Hawaii Five-O (1968), Kojak (1968), The Six Million Dollar Man (1974), The Dukes of Hazard (1979), Falcon Crest (1981) and Voyagers! (1982). As part of NBC's "Experiments in Television" in the late 1960s, he also directed the documentaries This Is Marshall McLuhan and This Is Sholem Aleichem.
Pintoff produced and directed a number of low-budget independent films such as Harvey Middleman, Fireman (1965), Who Killed Mary What's 'Er Name? (1971) and Dynamite Chicken (1972), a film using a collection of old clips from music with appearances by John Lennon, Richard Pryor and Andy Warhol.
After suffering a stroke in 1985, Pintoff retired from film and turned to writing books, including a memoir, Bolt From the Blue and a novel, Zachary and further books on his love of animation. His health declined again in 2001 and he died of a stroke on January 12, 2002.
- Caroline Pintoff - wife
- Jonathan Pintoff - son
- Gabrielle Stornaiuolo - daughter who lives in San Francisco
- Three grandsons
- "Ernest Pintoff, 70, Director Who Won an Oscar for Animated Film". The New York Times. February 4, 2002. Retrieved 2011-01-22.
- "Obituaries; Ernest Pintoff, 70; Animator Won Oscar". The Los Angeles Times. February 7, 2002. Retrieved 2011-01-22.
- Weiler, A. H. (January 4, 1972). "Dynamite Chicken (1970) 'Dynamite Chicken' Is Aimed at the Young". The New York Times.