Gila Golan
Gila Golan
Gila Golan in the 1960s
General Information:
Sex: Female
Date of birth: (1940-12-30) 30 December 1940 (age 77)
Born in: Krakow, Poland
Series/character information
Appeared on/in: I Dream of Jeannie
Character played/
Appeared as:
Princess Tarji in "This Is Murder" in Season 1

Gila Golan (born Zoshia Zavatski, 30 December 1940, Poland) appears on I Dream of Jeannie as Princess Tarji of Pakuait, whom Tony must escort around NASA and Cocoa Beach on her three-day visit, all the while keeping Jeannie from acting on a three-thousand-year-old "blood feud" between her family and the Princess's, which requires her to kill her, without having even met her, in the Season 1 episode titled "This Is Murder".

Life and career

Born in Kraków, Poland, Gila's exact birthday is not known, as she was hidden from the Nazis at a young age. However, she has adopted the birthday of 30 December 1940 for herself. She was found, as an abandoned baby, on the streets of Krakow. A Roman Catholic family found her left in a bundle at a train station during the Holocaust, and adopted her during the war. Her adopted family named her Zoshia Zavatski. After the war, she went to a home for 'lost' Jewish children. Arriving in Israel in 1951, with the name Zusia Sobetzcki, she became Miriam Goldberg and continued her schooling in an Orthodox girls' boarding school. Within a few years she had joined a Kibbutz, and was studying to be a teacher.

She was spotted by an American photographer, and ultimately ended up in the Israeli women's magazine LaIsha. Her new fame launched her to the 1960 national fashion competition, where she won first place and was crowned as "Na'arat Israel", i.e. Israel's Maiden of Beauty (IMB) (not Miss Israel) though she changed her name to Gila Golan to prevent word getting back to her religiously conservative benefactors. After receiving second place in that year's Miss World competition as Israel's representative, she was sent to the United States to raise funds. While modelling in New York, she won a contract with Columbia Pictures.

Director Stanley Kramer started her film career with the role of Elsa Lutz in his 1965 film Ship of Fools. She continued to establish herself in Our Man Flint, which starred James Coburn (1966), Three on a Couch (1966), Catch as Catch Can (1967), and The Valley of Gwangi (1969).