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George Langelaan

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George Langelaan

Known for
"The Fly"

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19 January 1908 (age 64) (
Paris, France

Spy, writer and journalist

Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation, Hugo Award for Best SF or Fantasy Movie

The Fly, Return of the Fly, The Fly II

Similar People
David Cronenberg, Charles Edward Pogue, Kurt Neumann, Chris Walas, James Clavell

9 February 1972 (aged 64)

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George Langelaan (19 January 1908 – 9 February 1972) was a French-British writer and journalist born in Paris, France.


He is best known for his 1957 short story "The Fly", which was the basis for the 1958 and 1986 sci-fi/horror films and a 2008 opera of the same name.

The Fly Part 1. narrated by Edward E. French


During World War II, Langelaan worked as a spy and special agent for the Allied powers as part of the Special Operations Executive (SOE). He was in F Section SOE with the rank of Lieutenant. His code name was "Langdon". According to his memoirs, The Masks of War (1959), he underwent plastic surgery to alter his appearance before being dropped into France. (The operation was deemed necessary so as to remove features that were too distinctive. He later explained that his ears were too large and that they had to be pinned back before he could be dropped into enemy territory.) He parachuted into occupied France on 7 September 1941 to make contact with the French resistance forces south of Châteauroux, arranged to meet Édouard Herriot, was captured on 6 October, imprisoned in the Mauzac camp, condemned to death by the Nazis, and escaped (16 July 1942) and returned to England to participate in the Normandy landings. He received the French Croix de guerre.

Langelaan was a friend of the occultist Aleister Crowley, claiming he was a spy and "that by winning the confidence of the Germans in America, he had access to members of their inner circle."

In the 1950s and 1960s he wrote his memoirs, novels, and short stories that were made into motion pictures and which were featured on television.

He died in 1972 at the age of 64.

"The Fly"

Image result for George Langelaan

Of all his literary works, he is best remembered for his 1957 short story "The Fly", which originally appeared in the June 1957 issue of Playboy magazine. The story itself has been adapted to the screen twice, in the 1958 film starring Vincent Price and David Hedison, directed by Kurt Neumann, and with a screenplay by James Clavell and in the 1986 movie starring Jeff Goldblum and Geena Davis, directed by David Cronenberg. The 1958 film spawned two sequels; the 1986 film had one. It was also adapted into an opera by Academy Award-winning composer Howard Shore, which was premiered in 2008 and played Paris' Théâtre du Châtelet, and was directed by David Cronenberg with a libretto by Tony Award-winning playwright David Henry Hwang.


His 1957 short story classic "The Fly" received Playboy magazine's Best Fiction Award and was selected for inclusion in the Annual of the Year's Best Science Fiction.


George Langelaan Wikipedia