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April 1, 1910|
Baltimore, Maryland, US
|Died||December 25, 1989
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Occupation||Director, Writer, Screenwriter|
Pirosh was born in Baltimore, Maryland and graduated from the Baltimore City College high school in 1928. His preparation for a career in Hollywood included study at the Sorbonne in France and the University of Berlin in Germany.
Pirosh began his film career in 1934 as a junior writer for MGM, working with fellow newcomer George Seaton. The two collaborated on the Marx Brothers' 1935 comedy A Night at the Opera and their next film, A Day at the Races in 1937. He and Delmer Daves adapted Ayn Rand's Night of January 16th for a 1941 film of the same name directed by William Clemens. In 1942 he collaborated on the screwball comedy Rings on Her Fingers for Henry Fonda and Gene Tierney.
Pirosh served in World War II as a Master Sergeant with the 320th Regiment, 35th Infantry Division. He saw action in the Ardennes and Rhineland campaigns. During the Battle of the Ardennes, he led a patrol into Bastogne to support the surrounded American forces there. In 1944 he produced his first film, Danny Kaye's Up in Arms.
He earned an Academy Award for Best Writing, Story and Screenplay in 1949 for his script for the World War II drama Battleground, a film he also produced that was the first based on the Ardennes battle. His work was also honored in other venues that year. Pirosh won the Golden Globe and the Writers Guild of America awards.
In 1951, he was nominated for another Oscar for the screenplay Go for Broke!. This was his directorial debut. He would go on to write the story for the highly regarded Steve McQueen World War II film Hell Is for Heroes, directed by Don Siegel, believed to be the basis for TV's Combat! (which he created). He also directed 1954's Valley of the Kings.
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