Professor Balthazar,
Zagreb, a Croatian trademark

Listen to the Professor Balthazar Theme Song
composed by Tomica Simović, Zagreb:

Powered by Castpost

Balt - Balthazar, Balt - Balthazar, Balthazaaar!

 

Professor Balthasar Professor Balthasar

Professor Balthasar

Professor Balthazar, living in the Balthazar City, is the most successful project of the Zagreb School of Animated Film, Zagreb Film, Croatia.

Zagreb Film

Zagreb Film - Cartoon Series

The creator of Professor Balthazar is Zlatko Grgić (1931-1988), and the name was coined by Zdravko Štalter. His name is written in Croatian as profesor Baltazar.

Zlatko Grgić in 1967, Zagreb, in creative mood working on Shoe Inventor - the first film from the Professor Balthazar series; source [Sudarić]

About twenty people participated in this project, and we mention just a few more names from this very creative team: Ante Zaninović, Boris Kolar, Milan Blažeković, Zlatko Bourek, and Tomica Simović - the author of lovely music.

 

The team that started the Professor Balthazar series in 1967 in Zagreb: Zlatko Grgić (on the left), Ante Zaninović, Boris Kolar, Zdravko Pavičić; source [ Sudarić].

Zlatko Grgić and Tomica Simović (on the left) going to a Zagreb pub to discuss the adventures of professor Balthazar and the accompaning music. Source [Sudarić].

From Shoe Inventor, 1967; source [ Sudarić].

Professor Balthazar is popular throughout the world even today. The episodes have been shown with great success in many countries, like Denmark, Finland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Sweden, Iran (!), USA, Australia, New Zealand, etc. The Professor is especially popular in Scandinavian countries.

57 episodes have been created between 1967 and 1978,
with duration 5 to 10 minutes each.
We provide the titles in Croatian and their translation into English.

Series I, 1967-1969, Zagreb:

Izumitelj cipela
Hanibalove Alpe
Horacijev uspon i pad
Leteći Fabijan
Martin na vrhu
O mišu i satovima
Rođendanska priča
Sreća u dvoje
Tetke Pletke
Viktorov jajomat
Vjetrovita priča
Zvjezdani kvartet

Shoe Inventor
Hannibal's Alps
The Rise and Fall of Horatio
Flying Fabian
Martin at the Top
On Mouse and Watches
Birthday Story
Happiness for Two
Wicked Aunts
Victor's Egg-Machine
Windy Story
Starry Quartet

Series II, 1971-1972, Zagreb:

Alfred noćni čuvar
Bim-bum
Čudotvorni kolac
Doktor za životinje
Duga profesora Baltazara
Figaro Hop
Krojač Silvestar
Ledeno vruće
Lutke bez kose
Oblačna priča
Problem nespretnosti
Zvonko sa zvonika
Najveći snjegović

Alfred the Night Guard
Bim-Bum
Miraculous Cake
Animal Doctor
Professor Balthasar's Rainbow
Figaro Hop
Silvestar the Tailor
Icy Hot
Hairless Dolls
Cloudy Story
Clumsiness Issues
Zvonko from the Belltower
The Largest Snowman

Series III, 1977, Zagreb:

Amadeusove uši
Drama oko cvijeća
Gusarski problem
Lavlje nevolje
Neman Fu-Fu
Oblačno sa padavinama
Pingvin Čarli
Stonožica Bosica
Svirka za Mirka
Vatrogasna priča
Veseli Most

Amadeus's Ears
Flower Drama
The Problem with Piracy
Lion's Troubles
Fu-Fu the Monster
Cloudy with Bickering
Charlie the Penguin
Miss Chilopoda Barefoot
Play for Mirko
Fireman Story
Happy Bridge

Series IV, 1978, Zagreb:

Baltazarova ljubav
Baltazarov sat
Duhovita priča
Dva cilindra
Hik
Izgubljeni zec
Igrati se lovice
Klaun Danijel
Obučar Kroko
Operna zvijezda
Pingvin Axel
Posao je posao
Ptica
Sportski život
Šampion
Ulični svirači
Veliko hrkanje
Violeta i Franc
Vjetrenjača
Zrak

Balthazar's Love
Balthazar's Watch
Spiritual Story
Two Cylinders
Hik
Lost Rabbit
Playing the Hunter
Daniel the Clown
Kroko the Cobbler
Opera Star
Axel the Penguin
Work is Work
Bird
Sport Life
Champion
Street Musicians
Big Snore
Violeta and Franc
Windmill
Air

 

For a detailed information see Animirani filmovi - Zagreb film [PDF]

 

Professor Balthazar's Lab

Professor Balthazar, like every true professor, is always ready to answer questions, even those addressed to the Ministry of Science of the Republic of Croatia:

In Croatia, and especially in his native Zagreb, there are more and more complaints concerning the disappearance of Professor Balthazar from TV programs:

Source: www.u7i15.com

In 1997 the Republic of Croatia issued a nice stamp in 350,000 copies, devoted to the Zagreb School of Animated Film, see here.

Professor Blathazar should be acquainted with modern technologies for his students; source.

   

Solving extremely difficult problems...

Professor Balthazar is surrounded with books and friends.

The following photos come from a German web-site TV-Kult:

And the photos are accompanied with the following comment:

"Bal- Balthazar, Bal- Balthazar, Balthazaaar"

Professor Balthazar ist schon ein genialer Erfinder! Er baut die verrücktesten Maschinen, so hat sein Motorroller z.B. mechanische Füße, die den Roller antreiben - und zum Fliegen benutzt er eine umgebaute Waschmaschine, die Auftrieb durch ein buntes Windrad erhält.


Wenn er mal wieder mit einem Problem konfrontiert wird, geht er auf und ab um sich eine Lösung auszudenken. Das kommentiert dann die Stimme aus dem Off mit den Worten "Er überlegte... und überlegte... und überlegte... und dann hatte er eine Idee!". Professor Balthazar läuft zu seiner fantastisch-bunten Wundermaschine, die als Lösung letztendlich immer einen Tropfen eines wundersamen Chemiekaliencocktails ausspuckt, den der Professor dann in einem Reagenzglas auffängt. Tropft er den Inhalt dieses Reagenzglases auf den Boden, entsteht wie durch Zauberei immer genau das, was zur Lösung gerade benötigt wird. Meistens ist es eben doch wieder eine von seinen fantastischen Maschinen, die so aus dem Wundermittel entsteht. Und die führt natürlich dann dazu, dass alles wieder gut wird...

Oliver Goltz (geb. 1966) schrieb am 18.10.2007:
Ganz dunkel noch in Erinnerung, wie ich als ca 5 jähriger vor dem Fernseher saß und völlig fasziniert war von Prof Baltasars Erfindungen

marko (geb. 1968) schrieb am 28.04.2007:
Ich habe Prof.Balthazar als Kind sehr gerne gesehen und sollte wiederholt werden denn das Kinderprogramm war früher besser als heute

christian hornbostel: habs gefunden!!! hier kann man sicherlich alle filmen kaufeeeen!!!!

Schmidt, Andrea (geb. 1966): Ich fand die Sendung und auch die Anfangsmelodie der Sendung total toll. Bal..... balthasar.....bal.....balthasar.....bal....balthasar....balthasar

It seems that Professor Balthazar was an inspiration even in fashion (source):

Here is an explanation for those who can read Swedish:
Mönstret pa den här klänningen fran "Mina" paminner mig lite om ett skivomslag fran en av "James & Karins" skivor (ni vet "älgarna demonstrerar"). Men även lite om nagot som skulle kunna vara taget ur exempelvis professor Balthazar. Det känns riktigt 70-tal iallafall, och jag älskar klänningen. Fast den är lite väl dyr för min planbok just nu. -Hej kurslitteratur för 1000 spänn! För den som har lust att punga ut med 820 pix finns den pa Asos.


Balthazar socks in Croatia
www.professor-balthazar.com
Many thanks to my dear friend Eugen Divjak for this information.


Profesor Baltazar - Bim i Bum


Profesor Baltazar - Alfred noćni čuvar


Profesor Baltazar - Vjetrovita priča


Profesor Baltazar - Viktorov jajomat


Profesor Baltazar - O mišu i satovima


Profesor Baltazar - Martin na vrhu


Profesor Baltazar - Maestro Koko


Profesor Baltazar - Leteći Fabijan


Profesor Baltazar - O mišu i satovima


Profesor Baltazar - Tetke Pletke


Profesor Baltazar - Izumitelj cipela


Profesor Baltazar - Horacijev uspon i pad


Profesor Baltazar - Hanibalove alpe


Profesor Baltazar - Rođendanska priča


Profesor Baltazar - Zvjezdani kvartet

There have been attempts to create 3-dimensional version of Professor Balthasar, like this one in Denmark (source):

Der blev i 1970'erne lavet 60 afsnit af tegnefilmserien "Professor Balthazar" af den kroatiske tegner/forfatter Zlatko Grgic for Zagreb Film.

And here are some comments in Dutch :

'Professor Balthazar' is een geniale uitvinder. Hij bouwt de gekste machin's; zo drijven mechanische voeten zijn motorscooter aan en om te vliegen gebruikt hij een omgebouwde wasmachine, die door een kleurrijk windwiel wordt aangestuurd. Als hij weer eens met een probleem wordt geconfronteerd, rust hij niet voordat hij een oplossing heeft bedacht.

'Hij dacht na... en dacht na... en dacht na... en dan, "EUREKA!", had hij een idee!' Professor Balthazar loopt naar zijn fantastische wondermachine, die als oplossing uiteindelijk een druppel van een wonderbaarlijke chemicaliëncocktail uitspuugt, die de dokter dan in een reageerbuis opvangt. Als hij de inhoud van de reageerbuis op de grond laat vallen, dan ontstaat er als bij toverslag altijd precies dat, wat als oplossing nodig is. Meestal is dat weer een van zijn fantastische machines, die uit het wondermiddel ontstaat. En zo loopt alles altijd weer goed af...


Professor Balthazar is popular in Portugal:

DESENHOS ANIMADOS

O "Professor Baltazar" foi criado em 1967 pelo croata Zlatko Grgic (1931-1988). Foram produzidas 4 séries entre 1967 e 1978 pela "Zagreb Film", com um total de 59 episódios. Em 1999, foi produzida uma nova série a 3 dimensões, mas não teve o mesmo sucesso que a antiga série.

O Professor Baltazar é um cientista, amante da natureza, protector dos seres vivos, um lutador do bem contra o mal, ecologista, um promotor da tolerância, da paz e do amor, é engraçado, criativo, humilde e discreto. Baltazar resolve os problemas à sua volta com o auxilio das suas curiosas invenções.

A série estreou na RTP nos anos 70 no programa "Cinema de Animação".

...Adorei ter encontrado este magnífico blog! Eu adorava o professor Baltazar... Mostrei ao meu filho de 5 anos alguns e ele simplesmente adorou!!! ...

Source:

desenhosanimadospt.blogspot.com


Tko je Profesor Baltazar?

O Professor Baltazar

Hoje trago à memória mais uma emblemática série de animação, "O Professor Baltazar". Esta série, que passou na RTP do "preto-e-branco" dos anos 70, divulgada pelo já saudoso Vasco Granja no seu programa "Cinema de Animação”, era proveniente da então Europa de Leste, mais concretamente da Croácia, ...

A série é composta por 57 episódios, produzidos por Zlatko Grgić no estúdio Zagreb Film, entre 1967 e 1978 (1ª série de 12 episódios entre 1967/1969, 2ª de 13 episódios entre 1971/1972, 3ª série de 12 episódios em 1977 e finalmente a 4ª série de 20 episódios em 1978). Algumas fontes referem um total de 59 episódios e também há divergências quanto ao espaço temporal da produção.

A série teve ainda uma versão em 3D, “The return of professor Balthazar”, em 1999, também produzida pela Zagreb Film. Desconheço se passou em Portugal e qual o êxito, mas certamente sem a a magia própria do original dos anos 70. Há coisas que não funcionam mesmo quando adaptadas ou revestidas com novas tecnologias. Há vários casos desses fracassos.

"O professor Baltazar" tinha o cunho inconfundível de muitas outras boas séries produzidas na Europa de Leste, nomeadamente "O Lápis Mágico", da Polónia. Cada episódio é relativamente curto, entre 5 a 10 minutos, e onde a fala quase não existe, mas apenas sons e música, sempre de forma expressiva que acentua os ritmos e emoções das histórias.

Na Croácia, a figura do Professor Baltazar transformou-se num ícone ou ex-libris e deu lugar a vários produtos de marketing.

Baltazar, apresentado como professor, é mais do que isso, pois é também um cientista, um químico, um inventor, e até mesmo uma espécie de mágico que mistura líquídos e poções numa complexa maquineta, na extremidade da qual tem uma torneira de onde saem umas gotas da poção que resolverá determinado problema no contexto de cada história. Como inventor também constrói maquinetas e mecanismos deveras estranhos mas sempre funcionais.

Em criança, a exemplo do que acontecia com "O Lápis Mágico", eu ficava um pouco fascinado por essa magia do Professor Baltazar.
Para além do desenho animado em si, das suas histórias, da sua magia, a música de abertura, de autoria de Tomica Simović, tornou-se uma memória indelével e que ainda hoje nos sai facilmente dos lábios. Bal…Bal…Baltazar, Baltazar, Baltazar.

Many thanks to Mr. Hrvoje Keko, Zagreb - Croatia / Porto - Portugal.


Professor Balthazar is popular even in Iran:

Baltazar shop in the city of Varazdin, Croatia

Baltazar fast food restaurant in the city of Rijeka, Croatia

DVDlab company from Rome, directed by Predrag Radanovic originating from Zagreb, is finishing digital restoring of the popular Zagreb Film series of "Professor Balthazar". To this end, about 400 kg of negatives of the original series has been transported from Zagreb (ie from Hrvatske kinoteke and the arhives of Zagreb film) to Rome in January 2007. Soon it will be possible to see 49 restored episodes on TV and DVD in English.

Baltazar grad - Balthazar City

Below is a demo of digital film restoration process with MTI Correct DSR, which compares the old and restored versions. This is a part of 9 minute film Hanibalove alpe (Hannibal's Alps, 1968). We could mention that the accompaning voice in this restored (English) version is unfortunately male, while in the Croatian original it is female. Let us point out that the whole (unrestored) original series is already available for some time on ten excellent DVD's in Croatian and in English. Long live Professor Balthazar!

 

 

Within the building of Zagreb Film, Vlaska street 70, one can see nice dolls representing professor Balthazar:

The entrance to the building of Zagreb Film is recognizable by its symbol - a horse:

In 1998 the School of Animated Film (Škola crtanog filma) has been founded for children attending primary schools in Zagreb, under the direction of Zagreb Film:

Professor Balthazar is without any doubt the most successful project of the Zagreb School of Animated Film.

Blatazar Tramway in Zagreb, the first in the history of Mankind!

The name of The Zagreb School of Animated Film was coined by Georges Sadoul, a famous French film theorist, already in 1959 during the Cannes Festival. According to www.taborfilmfestival.com, Sadoul described "...the unique artistic-philosophical style of animated films that emerged from the Zagreb Film Studio."

Dušan Vukotić, Zagreb; Source [Sudarić].

Here we mention a famous Croatian animated film Surrogate (or Ersatz) by Dušan Vukotić (1927-1998), which was the first European film ever to win the prestigeous American OSCAR for Animation (1962).

Dusan Vukotic, Zagreb, with his 1962 OSCAR for animated film Surrogate (Ersatz), created in 1961

 


Surogat (Ersatz) by Dusan Vukotic, Zagreb, 1961

As we see, Vukotic's 1961 Surrogate (or Ersatz) precedes Grgic's Professor Balthazar for six years. It is also worth mentioning that the composer of music is the same - Tomica Simovic:

tiii-ra taaa-ta-ta-ta tiii-ra-taaa-ta-ta...

 

yes, da, oui, si, ja! Ersatz is the best cartoon movie... (source [ Sudarić])

Standing in marked opposition to globally dominant Disney realism, the films of Dušan Vukotić were hugely influential. Beginning his animation career in Zagreb in the early 50's, a lack of ease with Disney style drawing led him to stylistic and thematic innovations that helped spawn a movement. Using satire and parody in conjunction with denaturalized spaces and strange visuals approaching abstraction, his films moved beyond pure entertainment to explore the full potential of animation as an educational tool. Vukotić's film Surrogate won the animation Oscar in 1962.

Source: Ottava International Animation Festival , 2007

 

 

Another Vukotic's very nice and poetic film:


Dušan Vukotić: The Last Waltz in the Old Mill, Zagreb, Croatia, 1995

If you come to the city of Zagreb, do not miss to visit the Zagreb Municipal Museum (in Croatian, Muzej grada Zagreba). Its permanent display, Section 34, is devoted to the Zagreb School of Animated Film.

TV Programs - Animation

THE GREATEST CARTOONS FROM THE EUROPEAN MASTER COLLECTION, 4 x 60 minutes

For the first time in more than a decade, the extraordinary animation from the world renown American Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Science's "OSCAR" - winning Zagreb Film Studio, as well as the internationally acclaimed Sofia Animation Studio, are available for broadcast and home video.

Both libraries have been packaged into 4 hours for children and 1 hour for adults. The Zagreb series is from a collection, which won more than 400 international awards, and pioneered a unique style, called the "Zagreb School" of animation.

1. Vol. 1 - THE CLASSIC COLLECTION
Beginning with ERSATZ, the first film from outside of the United States to win the "Oscar" for best animated film, these 7 cartoons are representative of the most unique offerings from the legendary Zagreb Film studio.

2. Vol. 2 - LAUGH AT YOUR OWN RISK
Beyond all metaphors, all the symbolism, and all the awards, the films from Zagreb will make you laugh! These are among the funniest.

3. Vol. 3 - BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR
Fifteen stories of irony, double cross, and mystery. Some are hilarious, some poignant, and all memorable.

4. Vol. 4 - FOR CHILDREN ONLY
Zagreb produced dozens of films particularly for children, including the internationally distributed Professor Balthazar and Little Flying Bears series. These eleven cartoons include many of the studio's most acclaimed individual shorts for children.

Source: Global Telemedia, inc.

 

Professor Balthazar series is available on 10 DVDs, 50 min each, issued by Zagreb Film - highly recommended! Please, contact Zagreb Film, and indicate if you want Croatian or English version:


Sources and related articles:

Darko Žubrinić, Zagreb, 2008


 

Croatia - its History, Culture and Science