Pendal’s reputation rests on animated films like The Peep Show, I know an old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly and What on Earth: all of which were made while he was at the National Film Board. His What on Earth! (1966) was an abstract view of a world populated by cars. His work on director Terence Macartney-Filgate’s The Hotest Show on Earth dealt with the energy crisis of the 1970’s.

He was born in Denmark to a painter father who did renaissance style landscapes. His first love was comic books but as a young artist working for an advertising agency, he snuck out of work to watch movies where he discovered animated shorts. Following every feature was a cartoon. One day Norman McLaren’s Fiddle Dee Dee replaced the usual Popeye short. When the lights came up one patron jumped up and demanded his money back. A man next to him jumped up and declared it was the best thing he had ever seen. Suddenly everyone was arguing about the film’s merits. “From that time forward, I became very interested in the [films] of the NFB.” Pindal said. (48)

Pindal learned animation under David Hand a Walt Disney director who had been lured to Britain by the promises of J. Arthur Rank Inc. that did not materialize. Hind was invited to Copenhagen by Pindal and other Danish artists to leaarn animation. Pindal’s first contract was an information film about marine diesel engines for the German shipping company Burmeister and Wain. This film landed him a job in Canada with the NFB where his first film was for the RCAF on jet engines. However, his sense of humour led to films like I know an old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly which was based on Alan Mill’s song..

Pindal became a core instructor at Sheridan College.


Book text:

Cartoon Capers: The History of Canadian Animators. Writ., Karen Mazurkewich,. McArthur & Co.,1999: 47-49.

“Kaj Pindal.” a handbook of Canadian film. Writ., Eleanor Beattie. Peter Martin Associates Ltd/Take One, 1973: 176.

“Pindal Kaj.” Take One’s Essential Guide to Canadian Film. Ed., Wyndham Wise. University of Toronto Press 2001: 166-167.

Periodical text:

“Peep and the Multimedia World: An Interview with Kaj Pindal.” Writ., Marc Glassman. Take One, Summer 1997:12-17.