In the mid-1950s, the Zagreb School of Animated Film made an avantgarde step forward, creating its own aesthetic signature in the world of animated film.  The proponents of this new concept were seventeen authors. The period from 1957 to 1962 is considered the golden age of the Zagreb School of Animated Film, spearheaded by the authors Nikola Kostelac, Vatroslav Mimica, Dušan Vukotić and Vladimir Kristl.

The first international success of the Zagreb School of Animated Film is the grand prize of the Venice Film Festival for the animated film Samac (Loner) by Vatroslav Mimica. But its biggest achievement came in the form of an Academy Award for the film Surogat by Dušan Vukotić in 1962.

Croatian and international animated film fans fondly remember the animated series about Professor Balthazar, a likeable scientist who makes life easier for others with his inventions.

The Zagreb School of Animated Film gave the European film heritage no less than 400 titles, winning 400 prestigious international awards for its creations.