Tuesday, December 25, 2012
MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM AEF!! Birthdays: Clara Barton, Humphrey Bogart, Cab Calloway, Helena Rubinstein, Rod Serling, Charles Pathe, Jimmie Buffet, Quentin Crisp, Mike Mazurki, Conrad Hilton- Paris’ granddad, Anwar El Sadat. Larry Csonka, Burne Hogarth, Ishmail Merchant, Maurice Utrillo, Kid Ory, Ken Stabler, Barbara Mandrell, Dame Rebecca West, Clark Clifford, Annie Lennox is 59, Animation educator Howard Beckerman, Karl Rove is 61, Sissie Spacek is 63, CCH Pounder is 60 1541- After the Christmas services, Michelangelo’s fresco The Last Judgement was unveiled, done for the Altar wall of the Sistine Chapel beneath his famous ceiling. 1931-The first BBC World Service Network broadcast. An address by King George V called "Around the Empire". 1946- Comedian W.C. Fields died of alcoholism at 67. While in his hospital bed someone saw him reading a Bible. They said:" W.C. what are you doing with that? " Fields replied:" Looking for loopholes!" 1955- Chuck Jone's 'One Froggy Evening' premiered. Director Steven Spielberg called it the "Citizen Kane of Cartoons." If you wonder why you never heard the old time ditty 'The Michigan Rag' anywhere else but here, was because Chuck Jones & Mike Maltese wrote it specifically for the cartoon. 1957- Disney film Old Yeller premiered. 1963- Walt Disney’s The Sword in the Stone released. First animated feature directed by Wolfgang,” Woolie” Reitherman. 1977- Charlie Chaplin died quietly in his sleep at Vevey, Switzerland. He was 86.
Monday, December 24, 2012
Birthdays:, Roman Emperor Servius Galba, English King John Lackland, Revolutionary Patriot Dr Benjamin Rush, Kit Carson, Howard Hughes, Ava Gardner, Michael Curtiz, I.F.Stone, Robert Joffrey of the Joffrey Ballet, Mean Joe Green, John Matusak, Susan Lucci, Nicholas Meyer, Ricky Martin is 43, Ryan Seacrest 1818-the song Silent Night first sung at the Church of Saint Nicholas in Obersdorf, Austria. It’s lyrics were written by the minister named Josef Mohr and music by a teacher named Franz Gruber. 1888- Vincent Van Gogh cuts off a piece of his left ear after an argument with fellow artist Paul Gaugin over the affections of a prostitute named Rachel. He sent his ear to the prostitute. She fainted. Recent scholarship theorizes his ear was sliced off by Gaugin waving an antique sword. 1922- The BBC presented it’s first radio play:" The truth about Father Christmas." 1952- First draft script completed on the MGM film Terror Planet, changed to “ Forbidden Planet.” 1964- First day shooting on the “Cage” a pilot for a new TV show called Star Trek. Jeffrey Hunter was the first captain, later replaced by William Shatner when Hunter’s wife advised him to skip the series. She was worried he’d be typecast. 1966- Local New York City TV station WPIX premiered The Yule Log. They ran a loop of 6 minutes of a closeup of a log burning in a fireplace in Gracie Mansion. The loop ran from 11:00PM to 1:00AM with Christmas carols playing. It made the TV the metaphorical family hearth. New Yorkers loved their kitschy Yule Log tradition and when WPIX tried to replace it in 1989 hundreds of complaints forced them to put it back the following year. The log was taped once more in 1970, and that’s been the film ever since. 1968- Twentieth Century Fox announced that legendary Japanese film director Akira Kurosawa had been fired from the production of TORA-TORA-TORA. Producer Darryl Zanuck’s original concept was the story of the Pearl Harbor attack told by Kurosawa from the Japanese side and David Lean from the American side. But Lean passed and Richard Fleischer stepped in. Japanese sections were directed by Toshio Fukusaku and Masuda, whose previous credit was The Green Slime. 1985- Fidel Castro gives up smoking cigars, on doctors’ orders. 1990- Tom Cruise married Nicole Kidman. 1997- 62 year old Film director Woody Allen married 27 year old Soon-Yi Previn, the adopted daughter of his former lover Mia Farrow. When asked to explain himself the director said: " The Heart wants what it Wants.."
Sunday, December 23, 2012
Birthdays; Joseph Smith -Founder of Mormonism, Paul Hornung, Ruth Roman, Otto Soglow -cartoonist of 'the Little King', Frank Morgan (the Wizard of Oz actor) Jose Greco, Elizabeth Hartmann, Harry Guardino, Claudio Scimone, Vincent Sardi of Sardi’s restaurant in NY, Harry Shearer is 69, Bob Barker, Frederick Forrest is 76, Japanese Emperor Akihito is 79, France’s First Lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy is 45 1823- SANTA CLAUS BORN. This day the poem "A Visit from St. Nicholas" was published anonymously in The Troy Sentinel, a New York newspaper. . Several years after the authorship was claimed by a Bronx Bible teacher, the Reverend Clement Clarke Moore, and he was celebrated in his time as the father of Santa Claus until his death in 1863. In 2000 a literary-forensic specialist challenged Clement Moores authorship. He claimed an Revolutionary War veteran from Poughkeepsie named Major Henry Livingston actually wrote the poem. He uses as evidence the poetry style of Livingston being much closer to the anonymous poem than Rev Moores. But we may never know. The poem completed the synthesis of English and Dutch folk traditions that were merging in New York into our modern concept of Santa. The Dutch Klaus-in-the-Cinders" or Kris Kringle was an elf who climbed down chimneys to give children toys. He merged with the British Father Christmas or Saint Nicholas who was a big fat jolly bishop with a white beard in a red suit. In an 1859 reprint of the famous poem famed cartoonist Thomas Nast (who created the Republican elephant and Democratic donkey) drew the first likeness of Santa Claus. Because of residual rivalry from the Civil War claiming Santa was a Yankee or came from old Dixie, in 1867 Nast ended the argument by declaring Claus’s true address to be the North Pole. The likeness we all recognize was created by illustrator Haddon Sundblom for a Coca-Cola ad campaign in 1934. 1893- Humperdinck's opera "Hansel und Gretel" debuts in Weimar Germany. 1894- Claude DeBussey’s “Afternoon of a Faun” premiered in Paris. 1912- The Max Sennett short comedy “Hoffmeyer’s Release” premiered, the first comedy featuring the Keystone Cops. 1913- Young Italian Rudolph Valentino arrived in America to seek his fortune. He was so poor that after a year he sent his parents a photo of himself in a borrowed tuxedo to allay their fears. He worked as a nightclub dancer and gigolo until becoming a Hollywood film star in 1921. 1930- Young actress Betty Davis signed her first contract with Universal Studio. 1935- Walt Disney sent a detailed memo to art teacher Don Graham outlining his plans for retraining his animators to do realistic feature films. circa-1935- This was the traditional day for Republic Pictures to fire all their employees and hire them back after New Years so they wouldn't have to pay them holiday pay. Republic billed itself on it’s business cards as The Friendly Studio.
Saturday, December 22, 2012
Birthdays: Josef Stalin- real name Jozef Djugashvili, Jean Racine, Giacomo Puccini, Connie Mack, J. Arthur Rank, Ladybird Johnson, Deems Taylor, Jean Michel Basquiat, Barbara Billingsley, Peggy Ashcroft, Emil Sitka, Gene Rayburn, Hector Elizondo, Diane Sawyer, Robin Gibb & Maurice Gibb of the Bee Gees, Ralph Fiennes is 49. 1808-DA-DA-DA- DUMMMM- Beethoven premiered his 5th Symphony. 1882- Thomas Edison introduced the string of electric Christmas Tree lights replacing candles.
Friday, December 21, 2012
Birthdays: Benjamin Disraeli, Josh Gibson- the Home Run King of the Negro Baseball Leagues, Pat Weaver-TV exec who created the Today Show and father of Sigourney Weaver, Frank Zappa, Dr. Kurt Waldheim, Florence Griffith Joyner, Chris Evert, Phil Roman, Jane Fonda is 75, Paul Winchell the voice of Tigger, Keifer Sutherland is 46, Samuel L. Jackson is 64, Ray Romano is 55, Jane Kaszmarek, Judy Delphy is 43, Jeffrey Katzenberg is 64 1914- The premiere of the first feature length film comedy- Tilly’s Punctured Romance, starring Marie Dressler, Mabel Normand and a young Charlie Chaplin. 1925- Sergei Eisenstein’s cinematic masterpiece Battleship Potemkin premiered in Moscow. The films pioneering use of montage and allegorical imagery intercut inspired a generation of filmmakers. 1933- Twentieth Century Fox signed 5 year old Shirley Temple to a seven year contract. 1937-Walt Disney's " Snow White and the Seven Dwarves" had it’s grand premiere. The first feature length American cartoon, it becomes the box office champ of 1938-earning 4 times more than any other film that year. 1971- Richard William's animated TV special "A Christmas Carol" with Alastair Sim reprising his scrooge.
Thursday, December 20, 2012
Birthdays: Bonnie Prince Charlie, Branch Rickey, George Roy Hill, Dr. Samuel Mudd, Jenny Aguitter, Uri Geller, Irene Dunne, Cecil Cooper, Albert Dekker, Amby Paliwoda, Charlie Callas, John Spencer, Harvey Firestone, John Spencer, Elsie De Wolfe, Jonah Hill is 29. 1892- According to Jules Verne’s Around the World in 80 Days this was the day Phileas Fogg completed his trip. 1920- English song & dance man Leslie Downes became an American citizen and changed his name to Bob Hope. 1937- Nazis Josef Goebbels noted in his diary that this day he sent his boss Adolph Hitler a Christmas present of a dozen Mickey Mouse Cartoons from America. Officially der Fuehrer called Mickey ‘vermin’ but privately enjoyed his animated antics. 1950- Harvey premiered starring James Stewart and a 6 foot invisible rabbit. 1952- Bridgette Bardot married director Roger Vadim. 1955- Sir Lawrence Olivier’s film version of Richard III premiered. 1962- The Osmond Brothers premiered on the Andy Williams Show. 1957- Elvis Presley received his draft notice. G.I. Blues! 1968- Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day premiered. 1971- Twentieth Century Fox chief Darryl F. Zanuck blames his own son CEO Richard Zanuck for Fox's monetary problems and fires him. This sets off a power struggle among the board of directors. When Zanuck's estranged wife Libby throws her support against the mogul, Darryl F. Zanuck is overthrown and fired from his own company. He was the last of the original Hollywood moguls.
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Birthdays: King Phillip V of Spain (1683), Edith Piaf, Cicely Tyson, Sir Ralph Richardson, Robert Urich, Jennifer Beals is 49, David Susskind, Fritz Reiner, Disney Legend Mel Shaw, Alyssa Milano is 40, Jake Gyllenhaal is 32 1914- Earl Hurd patented animation 'cels' (celluloids) and backgrounds. Before this cartoonists tried drawing the background settings over and over again hundreds of times or slashed the paper around the character and tried not to have it walk in front of anything. By the late 1990’s, most cels & cel paint had been replaced by digital imaging. 1932- BBC Overseas Service Radio broadcasts begin. 1957- The musical ‘The Music Man’ starring Robert Preston first debuted. "Seventy Six Trom-bones in the Big Parade.." 1958- the first airing of the Disneyland holiday show " From All of Us, to All of You." 1971- Stanley Kubrick’s ‘A Clockwork Orange’ premiered. Based on a novel by Anthony Burgess. In America the film received an X Rating, more for sexual situations than violence. The sensation over the film caused so many incidents of urban violence, that with Kubrick’s permission, it was banned in England for three decades. 1974- The first personal computer went on sale. The Altair 8800, named for the planet in the 1955 sci-fi movie classic Forbidden Planet. The computer came in a kit that you had to build and it cost $397. The next year, two kids at Harvard named Bill Gates and Paul Allen created a programming language for it called BASIC. 2001- Peter Jackson’s film ‘The Lord of the Rings, the Fellowship of the Ring’ first opened.
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Birthdays: Antonio Stradivari, Karl Maria Von Weber,Ty Cobb, George Stevens, Ozzie Davis, Diane Disney-Miller, Anita O’Day, Paul Klee, Betty Grable, Keith Richards is 69, Leonard Maltin is 62, Ray Liotta is 58, Katie Holmes is 34, Brad Pitt is 49, Steven Spielberg is 66 Two Hundred Years Ago- 1812- The first volume of stories Childrens and Household Tales by the Brother Grimm came out, The world learns of Rapunzel, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Snow White. 1919- in France Composer Cole Porter married divorcee Linda Thomas. They stayed together all their long lives even though she knew from the outset that he was gay . 1937- Mae West does a comedy routine on national broadcast radio with Don Ameche about Adam and Eve that was considered so racy CBS banned her from their network. At the same time she got fined by the networks for joking about ventriloquist puppet Charlie McCarthy:" Hmmm…he’s all wood and a yard long!" 1939-Max Fleischer's animated classic “Gulliver's Travels”. 1960- A young eccentric man named Jerry Garcia was dishonorably discharged from the army. He had done things like drive a tank into a field then walk away and had been AWOL 8 times in one year. After leaving the army Jerry Garcia became a hippie musician in San Francisco and in 1966 formed the rock band the Grateful Dead. 1961-" In the Jungle, the mighty jungle, the lion sleeps to-night…a winoweh, etc. " this song by the Tokens goes to #1 in pop charts. 1964- DePatie-Freleng’s The Pink Phink, the first Pink Panther cartoon short. 1966- Chuck Jone's 'How the Grinch Stole Christmas' premiered. 1975- Rod Stewart announced he was leaving the band Faces for a solo singing career. 1978- SAG strikes Hollywood again for residuals. (again...) 1984- Christopher Guest married Jamie Lee Curtis at Rob Reiner’s house . 1997- Saturday Night Live Comedian Chris Farley was found dead in his Chicago apartment in the John Hancock Tower, surrounded by empty food containers and porn magazines. The chubby 31-year-old had been partying for 17 straight hours doing cocaine, heroin, vodka and crystal-meth. His last words were to an exhausted prostitute:" Please don’t leave me.". He was set to play the voice of Shrek. Farley idolized the late John Belushi, who had also died of drugs and hard living at age 31. One writer recalled Farley drunk turned to him and asked innocently:" Do you think Belushi is in heaven?" 1998- Dreamworks feature cartoon the “Prince of Egypt”, or, as it was known in Hollywood,"The Zion King".
Sunday, December 16, 2012
Birthdays: Paracelsus (otherwise known as Nicholas Paracelsus Theophrastus Bombastus Von Hohenheim) the father of modern medical diagnosis, Antonio Cimmarosa, William Lyon Mackensie-King, Arthur Fiedler, Bob Guccione, William Safire, Cal Ripken Sr., Ford Maddox-Ford, Erskine Caldwell, Tommy Steele, Bill Pullman is 59, Eugene Levy is 66, Giovanni Ribisi, Arman Muehler-Stahl is 82, Wes Studi, Sean Patrick Thomas, Bart Simpson is 23 1843- Charles Dickens "A Christmas Carol: A Ghost Story for Christmas" first published. In the 18th century and earlier the Christmas celebration was a more rowdy affair with public drinking, marching around in costumes “mummery” and mayhem more like today’s Mardi Gras. This is why the Pilgrims tried to ban it. The popularity of Dickens story of Scrooge, Marley and Tiny Tim did much to help Victorians change the nature of the Christmas celebration to a more intimate and pious observance among centered on the family. Dickens said he wrote the story to make some money capitalizing on the new fashions for family Christmas celebrations around the tree. 1892- Peter Ilyich Tschaikowsky’s ballet “The Nutcracker” premiered at the Imperial Ballet in Saint Petersburg. One child dancer playing a candy cane in that first performance was a Georgian boy named Gyorgi Balavadajze- later American choreographer George Balanchine. 1936- Disney's last Silly Symphony, the Ugly Duckling. 1962- The Beatles first hit "Love Me Do" enters the U.K. pop charts. 1989- After appearing in some interstitial shorts on the variety Tracey Ullman Show, The Simpsons first premiered as a regular TV series. 1999- The film Stuart Little premiered.
Birthdays: TA-TA-TA-TUMMMMMM!!! Ludwig Van Beethoven, Catherine of Aragon (Henry VIII's wife number one), Lenoid Brezhnev, Jane Austen, Margaret Mead, Noel Coward, George Santayanna, Liv Ullmann is 71, Steve Bochco, Leslie Stahl. Quentin Blake- dean of British illustrators favored by Roald Dahl, William 'Refrigerator' Perry, Arthur C. Clarke 1871- BOSS TWEED INDICTED- William Marcy Tweed as New York City Commissioner of Public Works was behind one of the most corrupt city governments in U.S. history. Tweed mobilized poor and immigrant voters into political power and bought and sold Mayoral building projects. The cost overruns to build a simple courthouse cost more than the total cost to build the British Parliament in London- $13 million dollars. For example He billed the city $14,000 for 11 thermometers. The press tried to expose him, but it was really Thomas Nast’s cartoons in Harper’s Weekly who helped bring the Tweed Ring down. Boss Tweed said: "I don’t mind the newspaper articles since most of my voters can’t read, but those damn pictures!" Tweed once offered Nast half a million dollars to go to Europe and "study art". Nast refused. Boss Tweed ended his life in the Ludlow Street Jail, which he himself built. 1900 -EARLY ANIMATED FILM "ENCHANTED DRAWINGS', James Stuart Blackton was a New York World cartoonist who used to do a vaudeville act in drag. He came to do an article on Thomas Edison then Edison put him on the payroll. He created this and several other trickfilms. It doesn’t move much more than his vaudeville lightning drawing act, His 1906 film Humorous Phases of Funny Faces is considered the first animated cartoon. 1905- Variety magazine born. 1907- THE WHITE FLEET- Pres. Teddy Roosevelt sent a big badass fleet of US Navy battleships all painted white on a round-the-world cruise. It was billed as a goodwill tour, but in an age when battleships were the viewed like nukes are today, the message to other world powers was obvious. That the US was now a serious player in world affairs. 1913- Young English music hall actor named Charlie Chaplin got a job at Keystone Studios in Hollywood. His first film he would play a villain. 1935- Hollywood movie star Thelma Todd found dead in her car in her garage in Malibu She was 30. She was a sexy comedienne who starred with Laurel & Hardy, Buster Keaton and the Marx Brothers and loved to party so much she was nicknamed"Hot Toddy". She knew New York mobster Lucky Lucciano. Was she done in by the mob, her jealous director boyfriend, was it a suicide or did she just pass out drunk in her car garage with the motor running? The mystery’s never been answered. 1966- The Jimi Hendrix Experience released the song ‘Hey Joe’. 1980- Colonel Harland Sanders, the Kentucky Fried Chicken founder, died. 1988- Shockjock Howard Stern is fined $100,000 by the FCC for having on his radio show a man who could play the piano with his penis. 1993- Aaron Spelling fired Shannon Dougherty off the TV soap Beverly Hills 90210. 1999- Julie Andrews, star of Mary Poppins and the Sound of Music, sued New York’s Mount Sinai Hospital for destroying her singing voice during a routine throat operation.
Birthdays: Paracelsus (otherwise known as Nicholas Paracelsus Theophrastus Bombastus Von Hohenheim) the father of modern medical diagnosis, Antonio Cimmarosa, William Lyon Mackensie-King, Arthur Fiedler, Bob Guccione, William Safire, Cal Ripken Sr., Ford Maddox-Ford, Erskine Caldwell, Tommy Steele, Bill Pullman is 59, Eugene Levy is 66, Giovanni Ribisi, Arman Muehler-Stahl is 82, Wes Studi, Sean Patrick Thomas, Bart Simpson is 23 1843- Charles Dickens "A Christmas Carol: A Ghost Story for Christmas" first published. In the 18th century and earlier the Christmas celebration was a more rowdy affair with public drinking, marching around in costumes “mummery” and mayhem more like today’s Mardi Gras. This is why the Pilgrims tried to ban it. The popularity of Dickens story of Scrooge, Marley and Tiny Tim did much to help Victorians change the nature of the Christmas celebration to a more intimate and pious observance among centered on the family. Dickens said he wrote the story to make some money capitalizing on the new fashions for family Christmas celebrations around the tree. 1892- Peter Ilyich Tschaikowsky’s ballet “The Nutcracker” premiered at the Imperial Ballet in Saint Petersburg. One child dancer playing a candy cane in that first performance was a Georgian boy named Gyorgi Balavadajze- later American choreographer George Balanchine. 1936- Disney's last Silly Symphony, the Ugly Duckling, premiered. 1989- After appearing in some interstitial shorts on the variety Tracey Ullman Show, The Simpsons first premiered as a regular TV series. 1999- The film Stuart Little premiered.
Saturday, December 15, 2012
Birthdays: Roman Emperor Nero, Gustav Eiffel, J. Paul Getty, Jeff Chandler, Alan Freed, Ernie Pintoff, Tim Conway is 79, Helen Slater, Don Johnson is 63, Julie Taymor is 60 1815- Giacomo Rossini received the commission to write a new opera based on Beaumarchais the Marriage of Figaro- The Barber of Seville. 1939- The gala premiere of Gone With The Wind at the Loews Grand Theater in Atlanta Georgia. Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh flew out from Hollywood and the Governor of Georgia declared it a state holiday. 1954-“Davy Crockett, Indian Fighter” starring Fess Parker was featured on the Walt Disney TV show for the first time. The show created a mania for little kids, all wanting coonskin caps. “ Born on a mountaintop in Tenn- Ah- See..” 1966-Walt Disney died at age 65. He was alone in the room at Saint Joseph's when he died. A heavy cigarette smoker- his favorites were Malboro and French Gitanes- he suffered from lung cancer and respiratory failure. Contrary to the legend that he's cryogenically frozen in a room in the Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland, he was cremated and interred at Forest Lawn. Or maybe that’s what he wants us to think?! 2000-Emperors New Groove premiered.
Friday, December 14, 2012
Birthdays: 1553-King Henry IV of Navarre, Tycho Brahe, Nostradamus -Michel de Nostre Dame-1503, English King George VI-1895, Spike Jones the bandleader, Morey Amsterdam, Charlie Rich, Gen. Jimmy Doolittle, Lee Remick, Patty Duke , Adult film star Ginger Lynn, Clark Terry- trumpeter. Cecil Pay, Saxophonist. Chanteuse Jane Birkin "Je t'aime moi non plus" is 65. 1871- Verdi's opera "Aida" debuts in Cairo. 1913- Cartoonist Johnny Gruelle entertained his dying daughter by making up stories involving her rag dollies. After her passing friends urged Gruelle to publish them. The RAGGEDY ANN & ANDY stories are born. 1924- Ottorino Respighi ‘s stirring rhapsody the Pines of Rome premiered. 1944- The film National Velvet premiered, making a star out of 12 year old Elizabeth Taylor. 1957- Hanna Barbera's first TV cartoon "Ruff and Ready" premieres. 1977- DISCO! The movie Saturday Night Fever starring John Travolta and the music of the Bee Gees make the Disco dancing scene a national craze.
Thursday, December 13, 2012
Birthdays: Heinrich Heine, Mary Todd Lincoln, Dick Van Dyke, Mike Mosley, Darryl Zanuck Jr., George Schulz, Tim Conway, Christopher Plummer is 83, Steve Buscemi is 55, Jamie Fox is 43, Lynn Holly Johnson, Wendy Malick, Taylor Swift is 23. 1895- Gustav Mahlers 2nd Symphony “Resurrection” premiered. 1928- Leopold Damrosch conducted the premiere of George Gershwin's -"An American in Paris." 1936- At the urging of New Yorker editor Harold Ross to find a better line of work, actor Dave Chasen opened Chasen's restaurant in Beverly Hills, which catered to Hollywood stars for 60 years. It is the restaurant where Leopold Stokowski was introduced to Walt Disney and as a result they conceived "Fantasia". Humphrey Bogart, John Huston and Lauren Bacall met upstairs to discuss the Blacklist of 1947. Elizabeth Taylor ordered Chasen’s chili flown out to Rome so she could eat it on the set of Cleopatra. The restaurant closed in 1995 because the Chasen family wanted to cash in on the real estate. Today it’s a supermarket. \ 1940- Fleischer Popeye cartoon "Eugene the Jeep" .The Thimble Theater character would give its name to the new army General Purpose vehicle- G.P. or "Jeep". 1951- One of the legendary Hollywood producers was Walter Wanger- starting in 1921 his films included The Sheik, Stagecoach, Queen Christina, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Silk Stockings and Cleopatra. His wife was beautiful starlet Joan Bennett, but at this time she had taken a lover. On this day Wanger surprised Hollywood by pulling out a gun and shooting his wife's lover in the nads right in the MCA studio parking lot. In true Hollywood fashion Wanger got off, sentenced to just a few months in an honor ranchero compound and was soon back to work. Contributors to pay his legal fees included the Jack Warner, Walt Disney and Sam Goldwyn. The boyfriend, Jennings Lang, recovered and later became an executive producer of comedies like House Calls. After all, who needs balls to be a producer? 1969- Arlo Guthrie’s hit song Alice’s Restaurant released. 1971- Disney’s film Bedknobs and Broom Sticks opened.
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Birthdays: Frank Sinatra, Edvard Munch, Gustav Flaubert, Auguste Rodin, Edward G. Robinson, former NY Mayor Ed Koch, Zack Mosley –the cartoonist who drew “Smilin' Jack", Connie Francis, Dionne Warwick, Cathy Rigby, Tracy Austin, Bill Nighy is 62, Tom Wilkerson is 64, Jennifer Connelly is 42 1952- The first Screen Actors Guild Strike. President Walter Pidgeon -Dr. Morbius in Forbidden Planet- had the movie stars hit the bricks to win television and commercial residuals. The final deals were settled by then SAG president Ronald Reagan in 1960. Ronnie compromised with the studio heads (who later backed his bid for the governorship of California) that only residuals for films after 1955 would be paid. Actors who made their big hits in the 30's and 40s like Laurel and Hardy, the Marx Brothers, The Little Rascals and Mickey Rooney were left out. Mickey Rooney, who's Andy Hardy movies were the box office champs of the mid-1940's put it mildly: "Reagan screwed me !!" 1980- The song “Whip It” by Devo won a gold record. 1991-Actor Richard Gere married supermodel Cindy Crawford.
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Birthdays: Sir David Brewster,1781- inventor of the kaleidoscope, Fiorello LaGuardia, Robert Koch, conqueror of tuberculosis, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, Carlo Ponti, Gilbert Roland, Big Mama Mabel Thornton, Jean Marais, Jean Louis Tritignant, Tom Hayden, Jermaine Jackson, McCoy Tyner- John Coltrane's pianist, Brenda Lee, Rita Moreno is 81, Teri Garr is 65, Mos Def is 39 Mo’nique is 45 1793- Last July when the French Revolutionary Convention heard of the assassination of their great radical leader Jean Paul Marat one delegate called out “David ! We Need You!” This day Jacques David unveiled his painting THE DEATH OF MARAT for the first time. 1882- The Bijou Theater in Boston presented Gilbert and Sullivan’s Iolanthe in the first show completely illuminated by electric light bulbs. 1941- Gone With The Wind producer David Selznick pitched a movie version of Hitler’s book Mein Kampf to be directed by Alfred Hitchcock and written by Ben Hecht. Mercifully for moviegoers, the idea was soon dropped. 1970- Walt Disney's the 'Aristocats' premiered. 1978- THE LUFTHANSA HEIST.- Some small time Brooklyn Mafiosi slipped into the Lufthansa cargo terminal at Kennedy Airport and stole $8 million in unmarked bills and jewelry, most from European money exchange booths. As the FBI moved in on the gang it’s members tended to wind up dead, thirteen bodies in all. The money was never recovered. The reputed mastermind, Jimmy the Gent Burke, died in prison on an unrelated murder charge in 1991. The incident was dramatized in the Martin Scorcese film “Goodfellas”. 2009- Disney’s animated Princess and the Frog.
Monday, December 10, 2012
Birthdays: English King Edward VII “Bertie”, Emile Dickinson, Chet Huntley, Morton Gould, Victor McLaughlin, Dan Blocker, Tommy Kirk, Fionnula Flanagan, Kenneth Branaugh is 53, Dorothy Lamour, Susan Dey is 60, Michael Clarke Duncan 1607- Captain John Smith left the Jamestown camp with two men to find food. They were captured by the Indians who killed the other men and dragged Smith before chief Powhatan. He ordered Smith’s head to be placed on a flat stone and bashed in with a war club. But Powhatan’s favorite daughter Pocahontas threw herself over Smith and protected him. Smith could speak no Algonquin and the Indians no English and neither could sing any Broadway tunes. Was this an execution prevented or a ritual of admission into the tribe? Powhatan was known to extend his rule through dynastic alliances with other tribal leaders, and he was well aware of the white strangers, wiping out a Spanish attempt to land on his beach in 1600. Maybe this was his way of wanting to bring the white mans powers to his side. No one knows for sure. Smith didn’t write of this incident until back in England 14 years later. 1905- O. Henry’s short story “ A gift from the Magi” first published. 1938- To make the film "Gone With the Wind" Producer David Selznick and director Victor Fleming shot the massive "Burning of Atlanta" in Culver City, California. The sequence was storyboarded and designed by William Cameron-Menzies, who designed the sets for Intolerance for D.W. Griffith. Selznick used the opportunity to clean the studios backlot storage, destroying sets from King Kong, Little Lord Fauntelroy and Last of the Mohicans in the inferno. They shot the scenes with three Rhett Butler stand ins. 1941-The Hollywood Victory Committee formed. Top Hollywood agents like Abe Lastfogel, Lou Wasserman and Myron Selznick (David's brother) start signing up movie stars for bond drives and touring shows for the troops. The committee later created the Hollywood Canteen, a nightclub for servicemen on Ivar near Sunset. A soldier or sailor could come in for a free meal served by Tyrone Power or Red Skelton and have a dance with celebrities like Rita Hayworth or Dina Shore. One animation painter who worked in the kitchen told me the only celebrity who would stay until closing, even mopping and washing coffee cups was Marlene Deitrich.
Sunday, December 9, 2012
Birthdays: Sappho, John Milton, Jean De Brunhoff, Emile Waldteufel the composer of the Skaters Waltz, Admiral Grace Hopper 1906 who wrote the earliest computer language, Elzie Segar the creator of Popeye, Hermoinie Gingold, Dalton Trumbo, John Cassavettes, Broderick Crawford, Dick Butkus, Kirk Douglas-born Issur Danielevitch is 97, Red Foxx, Cesar Franck, John Malkovich is 59, Douglas Fairbanks Jr, Buck Henry is 82, Felicity Huffman, Judy Dench is 78 1946- Damon Runyon died, the writer whose characters the musical "Guys and Dolls' are based. His philosophy: "All life is six to five against." 1960- Coronation Street premiered on British ITV. 1964-John Coltrane recorded his landmark jazz album “The Love Supreme”. Late on foggy nights Trane liked to take his sax out onto the middle of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge and practice by himself. 1965- Bill Melendez's "A Charlie Brown Christmas" the first half hour animated t.v. special featuring the music of Vince Guaraldi. Producer Lee Mendelson had heard Guaraldi's jazz combo perform in San Francisco. He never scored a film before:" How many yards of music do you want?" A Charlie Brown Christmas has run every year for 47 years. 1967- At a Doors concert lead singer Jim Morrison was sprayed with mace and arrested by Miami police for “lewd behavior” on stage, but probably more for referring to the cops as pigs. 1968- Douglas Engelbardt of Stanford held the Mother of All Demos at Brooks Hall in SF. 1992-Britains Prime Minister John Major announced the separation of Prince Charles and Diana of Wales. 1994- Disney Animators in California move into their new Animation building designed by Robert Stern. 2340- Mr Worf, the Klingon officer of Star Trek Next Generation was born.
Saturday, December 8, 2012
Birthdays: Horace (Quintus Horatius), 65BC, Mary Queen of Scots,Jean Sibelius, George Melies the father of Motion Picture Special Effects, James Thurber, Richard Fleischer, Eli Whitney, Jim Morrison, Diego Rivera, Emile Reynaud, Sammy Davis Jr, Maximillian Schell, Flip Wilson, Sam Kinison, Ann Coulter, Teri Hatcher is 48, Sinead O’Connor is 46, Kim Basinger is 59 1868- According to Jules Verne’s novel Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, tonight is the night Captain Nemo’s fantastic submarine the Nautilus attacked and sank a US warship and captured Professor Aronax and harpooner Ned Land. 1940- Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo remarry. The two great Mexican artists had been married for ten years but divorced for a year because of their mutual infidelities. Diego also wanted to protect Frida from fallout from his political activities. But after a year apart that decided they couldn’t live without one another and remarried. 1941-DAY OF INFAMY Aftermath- On the day after the Pearl Harbor sneak attack, President Roosevelt did his famous "Day of Infamy" speech. The civil defense command placed anti-aircraft guns on the Walt Disney Studio lot because of it's proximity to the aircraft plant of Lockheed. Walt Disney himself was turned away at the gate for not wearing his identity badge. 1961-"Surfin’" the first record by the Beach Boys started to climb the local LA pop charts. 1980- The Bravo Channel began. Remember when it played only classical concerts and ballets ?
Friday, December 7, 2012
Birthdays: Willa Cather, Larry Bird, Piero Mascagni, Madame Tussaud-1761, Johnny Bench, Louis Prima, Ted Knight –real name Wladsyslaw Konopka, Victor Kiam II, Noam Chomsky, Ellen Burstyn-real name Edna Mae Gilhooley, Harry Chapin, Clarence Nash the voice of Donald Duck, Tom Waits, Jeffrey Wright is 47, Eli Wallach is 96 1919- “Blind Husbands” premiered, the first film by Erich Von Stroheim. Originally a Viennese hat salesman, Stroheim cultivated his Germanic aristocratic image on the silver screen. The premiere issue of the New Yorker in 1923 glibly noted how “Mr. Stroheim has grown a very stylish “Von” in the Southern California Sun”. 1942- An RAF bomber pilot named Lumsden filed a report about seeing a UFO following his plane in the night skies over the English Channel. British pilots nicknamed the unexplained lights Foo Fighters, after a phrase in the Smokey Stover comic strip. 1964- Height of student uprising at Berkeley College in California. Students won more liberalized curriculum and open teaching and created the first major student protest of the tumultuous 1960's and earned Berkeley the national reputation of the nations most radicalized school. The Oakland police were later nicknamed the Blue Meanies after the villains in the Beatles cartoon Yellow Submarine. 1974- The disco song “Kung Fu Fighting” by Carl Douglas hit #1 in the pop charts.
Thursday, December 6, 2012
Birthdays: King Henry VI of England-1422, John Eberhard 1822, builder of the first large pencil factory in the US, John Singleton-Mosby the Grey Ghost, Henry Jarecki, Baby Face Nelson, William S. Hart, Ira Gershwin, Dave Brubeck would have been 92, Agnes Moorehead, Tom Hulce is 59, Wally Cox, Lynn Fontaine, Steven Wright, JoBeth Williams,Judd Apatow is 45, Wallace and Gromet creator animator Nick Park is 54 Today if the FEAST of SAINT NICHOLAS, the patron saint of sailors and children. In the 350 AD Bishop Nicholas heard of a man so poor that he was about to sell his daughters into prostitution. Nicholas climbed into the man’s window and placed gold coins in the families socks drying by the fireplace. In some cities during the Middle Ages the custom was this day to elect a Boy Bishop who would reign in an honorary style until the Feast of the Holy Innocents December 28th. 1915- MAX FLEISCHER PATENTS THE ROTOSCOPE TECHNIQUE- This system enables you to film an actor then draw the cartoons over the still frames of the live action to achieve a realistic motion. (an early form of Motion Capture) Max would film his brother Dave in a clown suit then draw Koko the Clown over him. Dave had already owned the clown suit because he had been seriously considering a change in careers. The Fleischer's New York studio would be Disney's chief rival for most of the 1920's-30's. 1933- U.S. Federal Judge Woolsey decides James Joyce's "ULYSSES" is not a dirty book and can be published in the U.S by Viking Press. The book had been out in Europe since 1922. 1942- Val Lewton’s strange movie the Cat People with Simon-Simon premiered. 1964- Rankin Bass' t.v. special 'Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer' first broadcast. .
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Birthdays: Pope Julius II, Martin Van Buren , Walt Disney , Fritz Lang, Eugene Debs, George Armstrong Custer, Little Richard Penniman, Strom Thurmond, Otto Preminger, Calvin Trillin, Joan Didion, Jim Plunkett, Jose Carrerras, Margaret Cho is 45 1912- New York Hat directed by D.W. Griffith premiered. The first movie script written by Anita Loos, then 19. She became one of the finest Hollywood screenwriters ,who penned films like Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. 1952- The Abbott and Costello Television Show premiered. Where’s Hilary, Mr Fields and Stinky? “ Niagara Falls! Slooowwlly I turn! Step by Step! Step by Step!” 1974- The BBC aired the last Monty Python show.
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
Birthdays: Chief Crazy Horse, Samuel Butler, Thomas Carlyle, Lillian Russell, Vasilly Kandinsky, Buck Jones, Wink Martindale, Max Baer Jr.,Robert Vesco, Charles Keating, Wally George, Deanna Durbin, Pappy Boyington, Horst Bucholtz, Rainer Maria Rilke,, Jeff Bridges is 63, Marisa Tomei is 48, Tyrah Banks is 39, Johnny Lyon- 1948 of the band Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, Jay-Z is 43, Fred Armisen is 46 1657-Old Painter Rembrandt van Rijn was evicted from his home. He was kept out of debtor’s prison, when his daughter and son-in-law auctioned most of his possessions to pay off his creditors. 1791- The London Observer, called the oldest continually published newspaper in the world, first published. True, the Times was begun in 1788 but t had a spotty release it’s first few years while it’s publisher would be thrown in prison for libel. 1931- James Whale’s macabre masterpiece film “Frankenstein” opened at the Mayfair theater in NY. English actor William Henry Pratt renamed Boris Karloff played the monster. 1941- film "Mr. Bug Goes to Town"-opened. Max Fleischer's last gamble to keep up with Disney and keep his studio alive. However the events of Pearl Harbor three days later not only sink the American Navy, but also Hoppity's box office and puts Max out of business. 1958- Cocoa Puffs cereal invented. 1961- Someone at the Museum of Modern Art in NY noticed that they had hung Henri Matisse’s painting Le Bateau upside down. It had been that way for two months and until now nobody had noticed. 1985- The first Cray X-MP Supercomputer booted up. The Cray was used to create early CG animation for Hollywood movies like Peter Hyam's 2010. 1993- Rocker Frank Zappa died of prostate cancer at age 52.
Monday, December 3, 2012
Birthdays: French King Charles VI the Well-Loved 1380, Gilbert Stuart, Sven Nykvist, Joseph Conrad real name Josef Korzeniowski, Jean Luc Godard, Nino Rota, Jim Backus, Maria Callas, Larry Parks, Charles Pillsbury, Mitsuo Fuchida the Japanese pilot who led the attack on Pearl Harbor, Darryl Hannah is 52, Katerina Witt, Brendan Fraser is 44, Julianne Moore is 52, Andrew Stanton is 47, Amanda Seyfried is 27 1919- Impressionist painter Pierre August Renoir died of old age. Suffering from arthritis that left him unable to paint with his hands, Renoir used a bit that held the brush in his teeth. 1934- Lee Blair, Disney artist and brother of Preston Blair, Disney artist, married Mary Browne Robinson, Disney artist. She became the most famous of them as Mary Blair. 1997 – 56 year old Darlene Gillespie, an original member of the Mickey Mouse Club, was busted in LA for a securities fraud scheme.
Sunday, December 2, 2012
Birthdays: George Seurat, Charles Ringling, Julie Harris, Gianni Verasce, Ray Walston, Monica Seles, Cathy Lee Crosby, Lucy Liu is 44, Britney Spears is 31 1854-Napoleon III was Napoleon's nephew and since 1848 legally elected President of the Second French Republic. But he decided that he wanted to be an Emperor like his uncle so he seized dictatorial power,and arrested all dissenters like Victor Hugo, Alex DeTocqueville and cartoonist Honore' Daumier (gotta watch them cartoonists...) 1877- Camille Saint Saens opera “Samson & Dalila” with the Dance of the Seven Veils premiered in Weimar. 1935- Animator Marc Davis first day at Walt Disney Studios. He retired in 1978.
Saturday, December 1, 2012
Welcome to Decembrius, month number 10 to the Romans who only had ten months in their original calendar. It’s the same Latin root as Decimate, Dime, Decimal and Dixie. Birthdays: Richard Pryor, Mary Martin, Cyril Ritchard, Dick Shawn, Charlene Tilton, Lou Rawls, Rex Stout the author of Nero Wolfe, Gilbert O’Sullivan, Treat Williams, Woody Allen is 77, Bette Midler is 67, Sarah Silverman is 42 1835- Hans Christian Andersen published his first book of fairy tales. 1879-Gilbert & Sullivan’s comic opera HMS Pinafore opened. Sullivan conducted the orchestra while Gilbert was a choruster. “So Stick to your desk and never go to sea, and you will be the leader of the Queen’s Navy..” 1887- The first Sherlock Holmes mystery by Arthur Conan-Doyle "A Study in Scarlet" first published in Beatty’s Christmas Gazette. 1938- Legendary filmmaker Sergei Eisenstein released in Moscow his film of Russian patriotism ALEXANDER NEVSKY, with soundtrack provided by Sergei Prokoviev. 1951- MIT scientists booted up Project Whirlwind, the TX-0 Computer. Called the Tixo, it was as large as a bus and was the first computer that could do more than one program at a time. It also had the first computer screen and first light pen. It calculated everything from synchronizing the gunfire of battleships to how much icing to put in an Oreo cookie. A TIXO was used to crete the first CG animation software in 1962. 1953- Ex- Esquire magazine art director and frustrated cartoonist Hugh Hefner published the first issue of Playboy Magazine. It featured a nude centerfold of actress Marilyn Monroe. She joked to the press “ I had nothing on but the radio!” Hefner assembled the layout of the magazine on his kitchen table and borrowed money from his mother-in-law to pay for the printing. The first Playboy had no number or date, because Hef was certain he couldn’t afford to make an issue number two.
Friday, November 30, 2012
Birthdays: Samuel Clemens aka Mark Twain, Winston Churchill, Jonathan Swift author of Gulliver's Travels, Gordon Parks, Alan Sherman, Abbie Hoffman, Virginia Mayo, Ephram Zimbalist Jr, Richard Crenna, Robert Guiliame the voice of Rafiki in the Lion King, Rex Reason, Mandy Patinkin, Luther Ingram, Ridley Scott is 75, David Mamet, Shuggie Otis, Billy Idol, Joan Ganz Cooney the creator of Sesame Street, Dick Clark, Ben Stiller is 47, Elizabeth Cuthbert is 3o, Henry Sellick 1924- The first fax message sent. A photo of the Prince of Wales was wired across the Atlantic by radio transmission. 1940-Actress Lucille Ball married Cuban band leader Dezi Arnez. Together they pioneered the new art of Television. They divorced in 1960. 1968- “Love Child” by Diana Ross and the Supremes hit #1 in the pop charts. 1970- First day shooting on William Freidkin’s film The French Connection. 1982- Nova Pictures is founded, but due to conflict with a PBS TV show of the same name they change theirs to TriStar Pictures. In 1994 TriStar was merged into SONY Pictures. 2003- Roy Disney Jr, the last serving member of the Disney family, was forced to resign from the Walt Disney Company. It was claimed to be the mandatory retirement policy, but more likely he was forced out by the exec he hired to run the company in 1984- Michael Eisner. So Roy built a successful grass roots stockholders campaign SaveDisney.com. In 2005 Eisner was compelled to retire. Roy Disney kept an emeritus board position until his death in 2009.
Thursday, November 29, 2012
Birthdays: Gaetano Donizetti, Busby Berkeley, C.S. Lewis, Louisa May Alcott, Chuck Mangione, Vin Scully, Gary Shandling is 63, Cathy Moriarity, Don Cheadle, Joel Coen is 58, Jacques Chirac, Howie Mandell, Susee “Chapstick” Chafee, Anna Faris is 36 1915- In the first years of animated films, one artist like Winsor McCay drew everything. This day John Randolph Bray's "Colonel Heeza Liar in Africa" cartoon debuted. Bray adapted Henry Ford's assembly line system to making animation, creating positions of layout, background painters, inkers, cel painters, checkers and camera. After 1919 Bray shifted his studio’s focus from entertainment to technical and training films. Paul Terry, Walter Lantz, Max & Dave Fleischer and Shamus Culhane all got their start at Bray's. 1942- U.S. declared coffee would be rationed along with sugar, gasoline and rubber. And lots more. People put their cars up on blocks "for the duration". Gas Ration cards were listed as C, B & A. The C card meant essential defense worker, police & fire, so they had unlimited access to gasoline. A cards were the least important.Lots of Looney Tunes and Popeye 1940s jokes are about A-cards and rationing. 1963- After the Kennedy assassination, comic Vaughn Meader announced he was giving up his act impersonating the dead president. Meader’s comedy album The First Family sold 7.5 million copies in 1962, but now it wasn’t funny anymore and Meaders career collapsed. He died of emphysema in 2004. When Lenny Bruce first took the stage after the Kennedy assassination, he opened with a long drag on his cigarette and sighed:” ….Man…. Vaughn Meader is really screwed!” 1969- Atari announced Pong, the first mass-marketed interactive game.
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Birthdays: Jean Baptiste Lully, William Blake, Frederich Engels, Stefan Zweig, Ernst Roehm, Brooks Atkinson, Berry Gordy the founder of Motown Records, Randy Newman, Anton Rubinstein, Gary Hart, Vern Den Herder, Paul Warfield, Hope Lange, Ed Harris is 62, Paul Schaefer, director Joe Dante, Michael Ritchie, Anna Nicole-Smith, John Stewart is 50 1947- Disney's cartoon "Chip and Dale". 1948- Hopalong Cassidy premiered on television. 1953- Cartoonist & writer Milt Gross died. 1981 - Moviestar Natalie Wood drunkenly toppled off her yacht near Catalina Island and drowned. Her husband Robert Wagner friend Christopher Walken, were onboard having an argument and unaware of her predicament. Wood had once confessed to a friend that she had a horror of drowning.
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Birthdays: Cornelius Vanderbuilt, Jimi Hendrix would have been 72, Bruce Lee-original name Lee Jun Fan would have been 72, Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg is 56, James Agee, Chaim Weizmann, Mafia Don Vito Genovese, Alexander Dubcheck, David Merrick, Marshal Thompson, Robin Givens, Judd Nelson, Buffalo Bob Smith, William Fichtner is 57, Katherine Bigelow is 61 1924- The First Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York. The marvel of the parade were large displays that moved down the street thanks to small automobiles concealed under them. They seemed to "float",so they are called parade floats today. The huge balloons were added in 1927. Originally after the parade the balloons were let go to float away into the sky. Macy’s offered a bounty to people who found them after they landed, sometimes in rural New Jersey. 1933- Former Terrytoons animator Art Babbitt, now at Disney's, writes to fellow animator Bill Tytla encouraging him to move to California. "Terry owes you a lot and Disney has plans for a full length color cartoon!" 1936- Max Fleischer's cartoon featurette, "Popeye meets Sinbad the Sailor". 1967- The Beatles release Magical Mystery Tour. 1973- According to the X-Files this was the night Fox Mulder’s sister Samantha was abducted by aliens. 1985- Steven Speilberg married Amy Irving. They divorced a few years later. 2002- Disney’s animated feature Treasure Planet opened in theaters. 2009-Tiger Woods was the greatest golfer of his time and potentially the greatest in history. While other sports tainted with drugs and scandal, he had a squeaky clean image. This night at 2:30AM Tiger Woods crashed his SUV into a tree as a result of an argument with his Swedish bikini model wife. This incident revealed Woods as a big-time skirt chaser. More than a dozen women, cocktail waitresses, bimbos and porn stars came forward.
Monday, November 26, 2012
Birthdays: John Harvard 1607(founder of Harvard University), Bat Masterson, Eugene Ionesco, Marian Mercer, Tina Turner is 73, Charles Schulz, Cyril Cusak, Eric Severaid, Rich Little is 74, Wendy Turnbull, Robert Goulet. 1865- Lewis Carroll sent a copy of the completed manuscript of his fantasy Alice in Wonderland to his12 year old friend and inspiration Alice Liddell. Carroll later published the book with his own money. This is one of the first books written solely to amuse children, and not to educate or discipline them. 1939- The first Woody Woodpecker Cartoon, "Knock-Knock.’
Sunday, November 25, 2012
Birthdays: Lope de Vega, Pope John XXIII, Andrew Carnegie, Tina Turner, Joe Dimaggio, Carl Benz of Mercedes Benz, Virgil Thompson, Jeffrey Hunter, John Kennedy,Jr., Percy Sledge, Ben Stein, Ricardo Montalban, Bob Matheson, John Larroquette, Gloria Steinem, Christina Applegate, Bucky Dent, animator Bill Kroyer 1869- Ned Buntline was a hack dime novelist who understood that selling stories about gunfighters of the west would be easier if you could occasionally produce one in the flesh. So on a trip to Nebraska he found among the cavalry scouts an accommodatingly colorful rogue named William Cody, who everybody called Buffalo Bill. This day Ned Buntline announced in the New York Weekly the first installment of a serial series “Buffalo Bill King of the Bordermen”. Buntline and Cody collaborated to make Buffalo Bill the first true American media star, entertaining millions including crowned heads until 1916. 1929- Alfred Hitchcock’s film Blackmail opened in London. It was the first full length talkie in Britain. 1949- Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer sung by Gene Autry hit number one on the musical charts. 1960- CBS canceled it’s remaining five radio soap operas, most of them now on television. 1975- According to the first movie Rocky, this was the date of the first prizefight portrayed in the film where we meet Rocky Balboa. 1992- Walt Disney's Aladdin opened in theaters. 1995- Legendary Corporate CEO Akio Morita resigned as the leader of Sony. Under his guidance Sony went from a little postwar maker of cheap electric rice cookers to the largest electronics giant in the world. His official reason was health problems but insiders said the real problem was his headaches with Sony's Hollywood studios -MGM, Columbia, TriStar losing $2 billion. By the time he died in 1999 the Sony movie studios had pulled out of their slump and were on top with movies like Men in Black. 2009 Disney’s Princess and the Frog released.
Saturday, November 24, 2012
Birthdays: Spinoza, Toulouse-Lautrec, Scott Joplin, President Zachary Taylor “Old Rough & Ready”, Carrie Nation, Dick Powell, Garson Kanin, Cass Gilbert-the architect of the first skyscraper, Alban Barkley-Truman’s VP, William F. Buckley, John Lindsay, Dale Carnegie- author of How to Win Friends and Influence People, Steve Yeager, Denise Crosby, Billy Connolly is 70 1933- The RKO movie Flying Down to Rio, originally meant as a starring vehicle for Dolores Del Rio, but what we remember is it is the first pairing of the famous dance team of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. 1937- The Andrew Sisters record their Boogie-Woogie version of “Bei Mir Bist Du Schon”, an old Yiddish song that was updated by Bennie Goodman. 1938- LENI DOES TINSELTOWN -Hitler's top filmmaker Leni Reifenstahl arrived in Hollywood to meet the film community and show off her new documentary 'Olympia". Nazis charges de’ affaires in L.A. Gerhard Gyssling had bragged to the press that all Hollywood was dying to meet Germany’s top film artist. But Hollywood had different ideas. Paramount, Warner Bros., Columbia, Fox and Goldwyn refused to speak to her and picketers hounded her every step. Well known Conservatives like Louis B. Mayer and Gary Cooper were polite but begged off the bad publicity. The only studio heads who would meet Leni Reifenstahl were Hal Roach and Walt Disney. Uncle Walt gave her a tour of the studio but begged off running her film, saying the IATSE union projectionist would make trouble. ( uh-huh....) Years later Disney said he didn't really know who she was. ( uh-huh......) Leni told an LA historian years later that she thought Walt met her because his professional curiosity got the better of him. That he wanted to see Olympia, because it was the only film to beat his Snow White at the Venice Film Festival, then the world’s most prestigious. 1941- After suffering a strike and declining revenue because of the war in Europe Walt Disney’s studio was in trouble. Disney animator Ward Kimball noted in his diary for this day: “ 100 layoffs announced. Studio personnel from 1600 down to a Hyperion level of 300. Geez, It this the writing on the wall?” Disney saved itself with doing Defense films for the Army and after limping through the 1940’s with Cinderella was back on top.. 1947- THE HOLLYWOOD BLACKLIST- 50 Hollywood moguls like Harry Cohn, Jack Warner and Dori Charey meet at the Waldorf Astoria in New York to formulate a group response to the House UnAmerican Activities Committee anti-commie hearings that were targeting Hollywood. Besides the heat from the feds their stockholders were clamoring for them to get the Reds out! They agreed to enforce an industry-wide blacklisting of anyone refusing to cooperate with the HUAC Committee. Nothing was ever officially written down or published, if you were blacklisted you suddenly were unable to find any work. Out of an estimated 15,000 entertainment workers only around 300 were ever actually proven to be Communists. Famous blacklist victims included Zero Mostel, Lillian Hellman, Lloyd Bridges, Dashell Hammett, Gale Sondergaard, Edward G. Robinson, Sterling Hayden & Dalton Trumbo. 1950- The musical Guys & Dolls opened. “ I got da horse right here, his name is Paul Revere, I know a jock who tells me Never Fear, Can Do- Can Do..The Jock sez da horse can –do ” 1958- The musical film Gigi opened, music by Lerner & Lowe. Based on the writings of French author Collette, Collette herself had insisted young unknown Dutch actress Audrey Hepburn play the lead. 1968- Hey Jude by the Beatles topped the pop charts while Tammy Wynette’s Stand By Your Man headed the Country & Western listing. 1991- Freddy Mercury, lead singer of the rock group Queen, died of HIV/AIDS. 1998- America On Line bought their chief competitor Netscape. 1999- Pixars Toy Story 2. in theaters. 2000- Catherine Zeta-Jones married Michael Douglas. 2010- Disney’s Tangled released.
Friday, November 23, 2012
Birthdays: German Emperor Otto Ist 972AD, Edward Rutledge –Declaration of Ind signer, President Franklin Pierce, Krystoff Penderecki, Manuel DeFalla, William Henry Pratt better known as Boris Karloff, William Bonney better known as Billy the Kid, Susan Anspach, Victor Jory, Vincent Cassel is 46, Joe Esterhas is 70, Miley Cyrus is 20. 1889- The first Juke Box installed at the Palais Royale Saloon in San Francisco. Created by Louis T. Glass it used Edison cylinders instead of records and cost 5 cents a play. Juke comes from Juke Joint, a slang term then for a dance hall. 1897-First Royal performance for Queen Victoria of a Cinematograph moving picture, at Windsor Castle. Also on the program was Monsieur Taffary's Calculating Dogs. 1938- Bob Hope recorded his signature tune “Thanks for the Memory” for the movie The Big Broadcast.. 1942- PLAY IT AGAIN SAM- The movie CASABLANCA premiered. Based on an never produced musical, “Everybody Comes to Ricks’, Howard Koch and the Epstein Brothers adapted the play into one of the most memorable Hollywood movies ever. It was never expected to be more than a rehash of the popular Charles Boyer film Algiers. Humphrey Bogart acted opposite Ingrid Bergman, although he had to stand on boxes to appear taller than his Swedish leading lady. 1952- Animator Fred Moore, who drew Mickey Mouse in Fantasia and the Brave Little Tailor, died from injuries incurred in an auto accident in the Big Tujunga Canyon area of Los Angeles. He was 41. 1960- The Hollywood Walk of Fame is dedicated, featuring over 1,500 names- but not Charlie Chaplin, who was banned until 1972 because of his alleged lefty political views. 1963- The first episode of Dr. Who premiered on the BBC. 1966-The film “ Spinout “ premiered. Elvis Presley pioneered the genre movie of bored male movie stars who use their studio muscle to make us watch movies of them in racing cars. James Garner in Grand Prix-arguably the best one, Steve McQueen in LeMans, Tom Cruise in Days of Thunder, Sly Stallone in Driven, etc.
Thursday, November 22, 2012
Birthdays: French explorer Sieur de LaSalle, George Elliot- pen name for Mary Anne Evans, Benjamin Britten, Charles DeGaulle, Andre Gide, Wiley Post, Billy Jean King, Geraldine Page, Hoagy Carmichael, Rodney Dangerfield, animator/ director Terry Gilliam is 72, Robert Vaughn, Tom Conti, Mark Ruffalo, Jamie Lee Curtis is 54, Scarlett Johanssen is 28, Stevie Van Zandt is 61 1888- According to Edgar Rice Burroughs this is the birthday of the boy who would become Tarzan. 1980- Screen goddess Mae West died at 87. He apartment suite at the Ravenswood in the Hancock Park section of Los Angeles has been lovingly restored, since the owner claims her ghost nagged him to put her furniture back! 1993- Sir Anthony Burgess died. The author of A Clockwork Orange had been diagnosed with a brain tumor and told he had one year to live, back in 1959. 1995- Pixar’s Toy Story opened, the first all CG movie, and the first CG hit.
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Birthdays: Francios Arouet called Voltaire, Marlo Thomas is 75, Adolphe Marx called Harpo, Colman Hawkins, Stan ' The Man' Musial, Tom Horn, Pope Benedict XlV, Earl the Pearl Monroe, Goldie Hawn is 67, Harold Ramis is 68, Rene Magritte, Dr. John, Mariel Hemingway, Troy Aikman, Bjork is 47 1933- Film director Frank Capra went to Claudette Colbert’s home to talk her into delaying her holiday vacation long enough to star with Clark Gable in “It Happened One Night”. Colbert said she would only do it for double her normal salary and if they would be done by Dec 23rd so she could spend Christmas with friends at Squaw Valley Idaho. They made the picture on a rush, and Colbert later told her friends:” I just finished the worst picture in the world!” It Happened One Night” became a big hit for Capra, Columbia and is one of Colbert’s most memorable performances. 1934- Cole Porter's musical 'Anything Goes!' opened on Broadway. Ethel Merman starring, In olden days a glimpse of stocking was looked upon as somewhat shocking. Now Heaven knows- Anything Goes!” 1942- Warner's "A Tale of Two Kitties" the first Tweety Pie. I tawt I taw a puddy cat ! 1980- “The Who Shot J.R.?” episode of the TV show Dallas. 1980- Australian Olivia Newton John’s disco anthem to aerobic exercise “Let’s Get Physical ” goes to number one of the pop charts and stays there for ten weeks.
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Birthdays: Robert F. Kennedy, Maya Plisetskaya, Gene Tierney, Dick Smothers, Bo Derek is 57, Sean Young is 47, Richard Dawson, Estelle Parsons, Barbera Hendricks, Duane Allman, Joe Walsh, Chester Gould the creator of Dick Tracy, Alastair Cooke, Ming Na the voice of Muhlan, Sam Wright the voice of Sebastian in Little Mermaid 1994- Rock & Roll star David Crosby received a new liver. 1998- Several state governments and the US tobacco industry reach a landmark settlement arising from lawsuits over smoking illnesses. The trial also killed off once and for all ads featuring The Marlboro Cowboy and Joe Camel, a cartoon character that at one point was as recognizable to children as Donald Duck. 1998- Pixar’s film A Bugs Life was generally released.
Monday, November 19, 2012
Birthdays: King Charles Ist of England, President James Garfield, Roy Campanella, Tommy Dorsey, Ted Turner, Calvin Klein, Dick Cavett, Larry King is 8,000 Years old, Kathleen Quinlan, Alan Young -Mr. Ed’s friend, Allison Janey, Meg Ryan is 51, Jodie Foster is 50, Terry Farrell 1942- In a concentration camp in Poland author-artist Bruno Schulz was executed. The author of “Street of Crocodiles” last act was being forced by a Gestapo officer to paint images from Brothers Grimm fairytales on his sons bedroom wall before he was shot 1959- Jay Ward's television show 'Rocky and his Friends' debuts. 2007- Disney film The Enchanted premiered.
Sunday, November 18, 2012
Birthdays: Armelita Galli-Curci, Karl Maria Von Weber, W.S. Gilbert, Johnny Mercer, Astronaut Alan Shepard, Louis Daguerre, Brenda Vaccarro, Eugene Ormandy, George Gallup, Warren Moon, Pam Dawber, Rocket Ishmail, Delroy Lindo, Kevin Nealon is 59, Owen Wilson is 44, Chloe Servigny is 38 1602- In Transylvania, 22 year old English soldier of fortune John Smith killed three Turkish warriors in single combat. Such single matches were normal before a large battle. The Voivode or Duke of Transylvania, Sigmund Bathory, granted the commoner Smith his own coat of arms, with three Turkish heads. This is the same John Smith who will go to Virginia and meet Pocahontas in 1607 and sing Broadway tunes. 1865 Mark Twain's first story "The Jumping Frog of Calaveras County' published. 1902- THE TEDDY BEAR BORN-The Washington Evening Star published a story of how President Teddy Roosevelt while hunting couldn't bring himself to shoot a grizzly bear cub. Cartoonist Cliff Berryman illustrated the incident with one of his signature “dingbat” bear cubs in a gesture of “oh no!” Brooklyn toymaker Morris Mitchcom sewed a doll from the illustration in the newspaper and sent the first one to the White House. 1928- HAPPY BIRTHDAY MICKEY MOUSE- At the Colony Theater in New York Walt Disney’s cartoon "Steamboat Willie" debuted- The first major sound cartoon success and the official birth of Mickey Mouse. Two earlier silent Mickey's had been done, but they were held back when the sound experiment went ahead. 1985- Bill Watterson’s comic strip Calvin & Hobbs debuted. 1988- Disney’s Oliver & Company released.
Saturday, November 17, 2012
Birthdays: Roman Emperor Vespasian 9 A.D, Il Bronzino, August Ferdinand Moebius-1790 the inventor of the Moebius Strip. General Bernard Montgomery, Rock Hudson, Peter Cook, Lorne Michaels, Isamu Noguchi, Lauren Hutton, Tom Seaver, Gordon Lightfoot, Les Clark, Lee Strassberg, Shelby Foote, Sophie Marceau, Martin Scorcese is 70, Danny deVito is 68 1978- Our world was rocked by a disturbance in The Force more calamitous than the destruction of Alderon, It was "The Star Wars Holiday Special", a two-hour variety show on CBS, with Harrison Ford, Beatrice Arthur and Nelvana’s animated cartoon. 1989- Don Bluth's animated film "All Dogs Go to Heaven." premiered. 1994- The Sony Corporation posted a $2.7 billion dollar loss from it’s first year owning a Hollywood movie studio. Yet despite a lot of industry jokes ( “What’s the difference between Sony Pictures and the Titanic?-answer: The Titanic had entertainment.”) By 1996 the studio was on top with blockbusters like “Men in Black”
Friday, November 16, 2012
Birthdays: George S. Kaufmann, W.C. Handy, Burgess Meredith, Daws Butler the voice of Yogi Bear, Zina Garrison, Dwight Gooden, Maggie Gylenhall is 35 Gene Amdahl who designed the IBM 360 computer. 1946- The Television Academy of Arts and Sciences founded. Fred Allen once said: "We call television a Medium because nothing on it is Rare or Well Done." 1960- CLARK GABLE DIED- The 59 year old star had just completed the film the Misfits, a film in which director John Huston demanded a great deal of physical exertion. He had told his agent that the unprofessional antics of his moody co-star Marilyn Monroe had driven him so nuts they were going to give him a heart attack. Gable had one after shooting, and on this day while convalescing in Hollywood Presbyterian Hospital reading a magazine, a second heart attack killed him. He wrote his own epitaph, but it was never used- " Oh Well, Back to Silents." 1981- Actor William Holden died. The star of such classics as Sunset Blvd, Stalag 17 and Network, was told as a young actor to take a few drinks to calm the pre-camera jitters. But by now he was a hopeless alcoholic. This night at home alone and drunk, he fell and hit his head on a table edge. Too inebriated to call for help, he dabbed his forehead with bunches of Kleenex tissues until he bled to death. 1990- Disney’s feature film the Rescuers Down Under premiered. The first traditionally animated film to be painted digitally on computer instead of acetate cels and paints. 2001- The film Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone premiered to great fanfare and massive box office. Harry Potter’s creator J.K. Rowling had been so poor she at one time had been on the dole, now she was one of the richest women in the world. In England second only to Madonna and the Queen.
Thursday, November 15, 2012
B-Days: Georgia O'Keefe, Bill Melendez- director of A Charlie Brown Xmas, Irvin Rommel the "Desert Fox", Avrial Harriman, Daniel Barenboim, George Bolet, William Pitt the Elder, Veronica Lake, Beverly D'Angelo- actress and former animation painter, Mantovanni, Ed Asner the voice of Carl in UP is 83, Sam Waterson is 72 1907- The comic strip Mutt & Jeff debuted. The strip was so popular that it’s creator Harry “Bud “ Fisher became a celebrity and negotiated the first large backend deals. 1926- FIRST NETWORK BROADCAST- NBC hooks up 20 cities across America and Canada for a radio program "The Steinway Hour" with Arthur Rubinstein. It came from the Steinway building penthouse on 57th St. in Manhattan. 1934- Animator Bill Tytla starts at Disney's on a trial basis for $150 a week. He would create Grumpy the Dwarf, The Devil in Fantasia and Dumbo. 1958- Movie star Tyrone Power was filming a sword duel with George Sanders on the film Solomon and Sheba. He paused and told the director “ I have to stop, I don’t feel well”. He then died of a heart attack. He was 44. His father Tyrone Power Sr had also died on a Hollywood movie set in 1931 of a heart attack, 1965- Walt Disney announced he planned to build a second Disneyland, this time in Orlando Florida. 1989- Disney's The Little Mermaid debuted. When it opened in Copenhagen, director John Musker and Ron Clements attended a gala and sat next to the Queen of Denmark. They agonized over what would be her reaction to the reworking of the unhappy ending in this great Danish work, but the Queen's reaction was "It's beautiful! Hans Christian Andersen never could write a decent ending..."
Monday, November 12, 2012
Birthdays: Auguste Rodin, Dr. Sun Yat Sen, Bahi-ullah 1817 founder of the Bahii faith, Elizabeth Cadie -Stanton, Cecil B. DeMille, Grace Kelly, Edward G. Robinson, Jack Oakie, Kim Hunter, animator Shamus Culhane, Charles Manson, Neil Young, Edvard Munch, Nadia Comenici, Tanya Harding, Megan Mullally is 54, Anne Hathaway is 30 1946- Disney's "Song of the South" with James Baskett as Uncle Remus. 1955- This is the date Marty McFly returns to in the film Back to the Future .
Sunday, November 11, 2012
Birthdays: Abigail Adams, Alexander Borodin, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Gen. George Patton, Pat O’Brien, Kurt Vonnegut, Rene Clair, Carlos Fuentes, Jonathan Winters, Stubby Kay, Demi Moore is 50, Leonard DiCaprio is 38 Happy Veterans Day in the U.S., Memorial Day in many European countries. 1937- Animation wrapped in Snow White and the Seven Dwarves. 1938- The first day of shooting on the film 'The Wizard of Oz". Judy Garland met 125 little people hired to be the Munchkins. Judy's energy was fading under the heavy work schedule so L.B. Mayer ordered her put on Benzadrine (speed) every morning and Valium pills to sleep. June Alysson, another young MGM actress at the time said: "The studio nurse would give it to you and tell you it was vitamins." Judy Garland became a heavy drug addict and died of an overdose in 1969 at 47 years old. 1940- The Birth of the Jeep. The army introduces its first General Purpose vehicle-G.P. or Jeep, a name coinciding with a character in E.C. Segar's Popeye cartoons. 1953- Disney short Ben and Me premiered. 1954- Tolkein’s second book of the Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, first published. 1980- 'Heaven's Gate" Michael Cimino's $44 million dollar flop opened. Cimino originally said he could do the film for $8 million. Critic Pauline Kael said: "It's the kind of movie you want to deface. You want to draw mustaches all over it."
Saturday, November 10, 2012
Birthdays: Martin Luther, William Hogarth, Charles the Bold of Burgundy, Francois Couperin, King George II of England, Frederick Schiller, Claude Rains, Looney Tunes composer Carl Stalling, Lion King lyricist Tim Rice, Richard Burton, Roy Scheider, Ann Reinking, MacKenzie Phillips, Russell Means, Sinbad, Brittany Murphy, George Fenneman-Groucho Marx’s TV announcer, animator educator Sue Kroyer, Tracey Morgan is 44 1950- Paramount's "Mice Meeting You" The first Herman and Katnip cartoon. 1953- Disney’s short “ Toot Whistle, Plunk and Boom” released. 1969- The children’s education show SESAME STREET premiered on PBS TV. The world is introduced to Bert & Ernie, Cookie Monster, Grover, Big Bird and Mr Hooper. 1995- Carolco, the Hollywood studio that produced many Arnold Schwarzenegger hits like "Total Recall" declared bankruptcy after producing $115 million dollar megaflop "Cutthroat Island".
Friday, November 9, 2012
Birthdays: English King Edward VII, architect Stanford White, Marie Dressler, Ed Wynn, Claude Rains, Ann Sexton, Tommy Dorsey, Dr. Carl Sagan, Dorothy Dandridge, Dr. Herbert Kalmus the inventor of Technicolor film, Lou Ferrigno is 61, Sisqo 1964- First "Wizard of Id" comic strip published. 1966- In London Beatle John Lennon went to an art exhibit and first met a Japanese avant garde photographer named Yoko Ono. 2004- The Jones Soda Pop Company of Seattle announced its new creation – Mashed Potato Flavored Soda. This was to follow up on their success last year of Roast Turkey and Gravy Soda. 2004- Mozilla-Firefox started up.
Thursday, November 8, 2012
Birthdays: Roman Emperor Nerva, Bram Stoker is 165, Sir Edmund Halley, June Havoc, Margaret Mitchell, Joe Flynn- the cranky Captain Binghampton in the 60’s TV McHales Navy, Ricky Lee Jones, Bonny Raitt, Ester Rolle, Katherine Hepburn, Parker Posey is 44, Gretchen Mol is 40, John Musker- co director of the Little Mermaid, Aladdin and Treasure PLanet. 1793- In one of the positive results of the Reign of Terror, the French Revolutionary Government opens the royal art collection of the Louvre to the public as a museum. 1929- New York’s Museum of Modern Art opened. 1943- The first one man show of American abstract painter named Jackson Pollock. Pollock later created his brushless dripping form of painting that earned him the nickname:” Jack the Dripper”. 1966- Former actor and SAG president Ronald Reagan elected Governor of California trouncing two-term incumbent Pat Brown. Uber-Conservative Reagan declared a tough line with the Hippies of Haight Ashbury and Berkeley.
Wednesday, November 7, 2012
Birthdays: Francesco Zubaran, Madame Curie, Rev. Billy Graham is 94, Leon Trotsky –real name Lev Bronstein, Albert Camus, Al Hurt, Joni Mitchell, Joan Sutherland, Judy Tenuda, Clive Barnes, Morgan Spurlock is 42 1963- The movie “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” premiered at Hollywood’s new Cinerama Dome theater. 1965- the first Pillsbury Doughboy commercial debuted. ‘Tee-hee-hee!” 1997- Someone published a stolen home video of Baywatch star Pamela Anderson and rock star Tommy Lee having graphic sex on their honeymoon, not to mention how Tommy steered his boat. The Pamela-Tommy video became the most downloaded file on the Internet and rented video in history. In 1998 Pamela Anderson Lee was the subject of 1% of the Total Traffic on the entire World Wide Web!
Tuesday, November 6, 2012
Please Go Vote! As Adlai Stevenson said " In America, anyone can become president. That is the risk we take." Birthdays: Sophocles 495BC., Joanna La Loca (the Mad- 1479), John Phillip Sousa, Joseph Smith the founder of Mormonism, Ignacz Paderewski, Charles Dow of Dow Jones, Adolphus Sax inventor of the Saxophone, James Naismith the inventor of Basketball, Mike Nichols, Edsel Ford, Ed Rehberg, Sally Field is 65, Ray Coniff, John Olsen of the comedy duo Olsen & Johnson, Harold Ross the founder of the New Yorker magazine, Maria Shriver is 56, Rebecca Romjin 2009- Disney released Robert Zemeckis mo-cap movie A Christmas Carol, with Jim Carrey.
Monday, November 5, 2012
Birthdays: Eugene V. Debs, Art Garfunkel is 71, Roy Rogers, Tatum O'Neill, Elke Sommer- born Baroness Elke Von Shletz is 72, Ike Turner, Vivien Leigh. Will Durant, Joel McCrea, Sam Shepard is 69, John Berger, Robert Patrick is 54, Tilda Swinton is 52 1937- Disney's silly symphony The Old Mill debuted. The first film featuring the multiplane camera technique. 2004- Pixar's The Incredibles premiered.
Sunday, November 4, 2012
Birthdays: Will Rogers, Art Carney, Loretta Swit, Martin Balsam, Gig Young, Darla Hood, Robert Mapplethorpe, Ralph Maccio, Andrea McArdle, Walter Cronkite, Matthew McConnaughy is 43 1913- William Mulholland's great aqueduct starts bringing water 200 miles from Northern California to L.A. by the force of gravity alone. Without the extra water L.A. would never have grown any larger than 140,000 people. ( L.A. Times estimate.) 1952- UNIVAC, the first all electronic business computer, accurately predicted Dwight Eisenhower would win in a landslide. The first computer projected results for an election. 1955- In Arizona, Willie Bioff, former IATSE union official, who tried to hijack the Hollywood unions (Including the Disney cartoonists) for Frank Nitti's gang, turns the key in his Ford pickup and explodes. He had turned informer and was in the Witness Protection plan.
Saturday, November 3, 2012
Birthdays: The Roman writer Lucan 39AD, John Montague the Earl of Sandwich, Walker Evans, William Cullen Bryant, Stephen Austin, Bronco Nagurski, Andre' Malraux, Vincenzo Bellini, Bob Feller, Karl Baedeker author of the guidebooks, Lulu, Roseanne Barr, Osamu Tezuka creator of Astro Boy 1503- MONA LISA- Leonardo Da Vinci was hired by a Florentine senator Francesco del Giocondo to paint a portrait of his third wife Madonna Elizabetha or Lisa. He fussed over the painting for four years and never gave it to Francesco, he said it was still unfinished and kept it for himself. Eventually he needed money so he sold it to the King of France and today it sits in the Louvre. 1836- California ranchero Juan de Alvarado rallies local ranchers to overthrow Governor Juan de Michaltorena sent from Mexico City. This story may have been an early inspiration for Zorro. 1948 -The Chicago Daily Tribune prints the famous premature headline “Dewey Defeats Truman” based on early poll returns. Truman himself was so sure he’d lost the election he went to bed early. When he awoke he discovered he had won and he had a ball mocking the newspapers and doing nasal imitations of hostile correspondent H.B. Kaltenborn. 1971- The first UNIX manual released. 1977- Disney's Pete's Dragon starring Helen Reddy and Red Buttons. 1981- WALLY WOOD was one of the most influential cartoonists of the 1950’s and 60’s. His amazing versatility enabled him to draw everything from superhero comics to very cartoony to playfully naughty girls like Sally Forth. He drew EC Comics, the Mars Attacks series, Mad Magazine, Weird Science, THUNDER Agents and much more. He had done an infamous drawing of the Disney characters having sex that brought down upon him the wrath of the Disney legal dept. But hard living and deadlines took their toll. Suffering from a stroke, and failing kidneys Wally Wood put a 44 cal pistol to his right temple and pulled the trigger. Today police found his remains.
Friday, November 2, 2012
Birthdays: Daniel Boone, Pres. James Knox Polk, Jean Chardin, Luchino Visconti, Giusseppi Sinopoli, Burt Lancaster, Ray Walston, Pat Buchanan, Steve Ditko, Ray Walston, Stephanie Powers, k.d.lang, David Schwimmer is 46, cartoonist Steve Ditko Today is Dio de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead. It derives from the Aztecs, who believed the life you are living now is a dream, when you die, you awake to your real life. 1920- The first US Radio station, KDKA in Pittsburgh, began the nation’s first broadcasting with news of election results. 1950- Writer George Bernard Shaw died at 94. His last words were:" Oh well, it will be a new experience anyway." 2001- Pixar’s Monsters Inc opened. .
Thursday, November 1, 2012
Birthdays: Marie Antoinette, President Warren Harding, Stephen Crane, Marcel Ophuls, Benevenuto Cellini, Larry Flynt, Walter Matthau, Fernando Valenzuela, Lyle Lovett, Willie D, Rick Allen of Def Leppard, Jenny McCarthy is 40, Toni Collette is 40 1512- Michelangelo's Sistine Ceiling was open to the public for the first time. 1835- Davey Crockett, after losing his bid for re-election to Congress tells his Tennessee voters:" You can all go to Hell, I'm going to Texas!" 1895- Emil and Max Skladowsky set up a Bioscope Projector in Berlin's Wintergarden. Birth of German Cinema. 1920- The first issue of American Cinematographer. 1968- To replace the outmoded Hays Production Code, the Motion Picture Ratings System introduced-"G, M, R, and X"- Later PG, PG-13, R and NC-17".
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Birthdays: Jan Vermeer, John Keats, John Candy, Dale Evans, Jane Pauley, David Ogden Stiers, Dan Rather, Lee Grant, Ethel Waters, Juliet Low-founder of the American Girl Scouts, Rob Schneider, Vanilla Ice, Stephen Rea, Rob Schneider, Peter Jackson is 51, Disney Animator Ollie Johnston HAPPY HALLOWEEN! 1926 –The great magician Harry Houdini died. His real name was Eric Weiss but he had seen a French magician named Houdin who had inspired him. Some college boys in Detroit asked the great magician if it was true he could withstand any punch. When he said yes while reading his mail a large student unexpectedly started punching him in the abdomen, rupturing his already aggrieved appendix. Perintoritis set in and he died on this day. He was buried in a coffin he had used for his escape acts. He promised his wife if there was an Afterlife he would contact her. She held a seance on every Halloween hoping for a message but none ever came. She gave up after ten years. 1945- The "War of Hollywood" Ends. The CSU union strike, the film business's longest and ugliest, falls apart and many of the former members drift into IATSE locals. 1993- Young movie star River Phoenix overdosed and died on the street in front of the Viper Room night club in L.A after partying with Johnny Depp and Alicia Silverstone. The club is owned by movie star Depp and was once the Melody Room owned by old mobster Bugsy Siegel. Ironically, as Phoenix was thrashing spasmodically people walked by unconcerned, because it’s a common occurrence on the Sunset Strip.
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Birthdays: John Adams, Christopher Columbus,Ezra Pound, Emily Post, Louis Malle, Henry Winkler is 65, Charles Atlas, Ruth Gordon, Claude LeLouch, Dick Gautier, Louis Malle, Ted Williams, Grace Slick 1931- first day shooting on the movie Tarzan the Ape Man, starring former Olympic Gold Medal swimming champ Johnny Weissmuller. 1936- English Publishers George Allen & Unwin had received a manuscript from an Oxford languages professor named J.R.R. Tolkein. Raynar Unwin, the son of the publisher, read it and made a report “ This book will be a very good read for children from ages 5-7.” So they published “The Hobbit”. 1938-"THE NIGHT THAT PANICKED AMERICA- 27 year old Orson Wells broadcast a radio update of H.G. Well’s story "The War of the Worlds". Despite periodic station announcements that it was only a fictional re-enactment, people across the U.S. go bonkers that an actual Martian invasion had landed in Grover’s Mill New Jersey. 1973- The Carlin Case- Radical radio station WBAI in New York broadcast hippy comedian George Carlin’s routine about the “Seven Deadly Words” the naughty words you can’t say on the air. I can’t write them because children read this column but you all know what they are anyway. The FCC slapped a heavy fine and WBAI sued for free speech and the case made it to the Supreme Court. Today the High Court found for the FCC and those 7 deadly words remain banned from airwaves today. Aw, Sh*t! 1992- Disney's released their animated classic Beauty and the Beast on VHS videotape.
Monday, October 29, 2012
Birthdays: James Boswell, Sir Walter Raleigh, John Keats, Sir Edmund Halley, Louis Blanc, Fanny Brice, Joseph Goebbels, Richard Dreyfus, Zoot Sims, Winona Ryder, Jesse Barfield, Kate Jackson, Bill Maudlin, Akim Tamiroff, Ralph Bakshi is 74, Denis Potvin Neal Hefti-composer of the theme song for TV shows like Batman and the Odd Couple. 1923- The musical Running Wild opened on Broadway, introducing the dance craze the Charleston. 1929- BLACK TUESDAY-THE STOCK MARKET CRASH AND THE GREAT DEPRESSION BEGINS. The falling stock crisis which had been gaining momentum since early September finally culminates in the greatest one day collapse of the U.S. Economy. Millions of people who weren't ruined by last Thursday’s crash were ruined today. One third of all U. S. banks failed- 2,500. Eyewitnesses to that day all remember the strange low roar echoing through the glass canyons of Wall street, it was the continuous moans of thousands of investors being simultaneously ruined. Businessmen jumped to their deaths from windows. Two executives held hands as they jumped because they had a joint account. The chairman of General Motors William Durant finished his life managing a bowling alley in Chicago. The Union Club wallpapered it's bar with worthless stock certificates. Venerable firms like Morgan and Lehman Brothers allowed 'apple-breaks' for their brokers to go out on the street and supplement their incomes by selling apples. By years end all U.S. industry was working at 17% of capacity and unemployment would soon soar to 55% in many major cities. The newly built Empire State Building was nicknamed the "Empty State Building". The Hoover Administration, which espoused the traditional Republican hands-off attitude towards Wall Street, watched in horror as every trick known to financial wizards like Rockefeller and Lamont failed to stop the slide. People questioned whether capitalism itself was now a failure. Hoover's Vice President Charles Curtis, (for whom the nickname "Goodtime Charlie" was invented) continued to party while things collapsed. He responded to hungry, unemployed people protesting during his speech that they were all "Too damn dumb" to understand economics. 1957- Louis B. Mayer dies. His last words were: "Nothing Matters..." The head of MGM Studios lorded over Hollywood like a monarch, made and broke moviestars, ordered Judy Garland fed a steady stream of narcotics and had his office redesigned all white to resemble Mussolini’s , whom he admired. Humphrey Bogart was at his funeral. When asked if he was close to Mayer, Bogie replied: Nah, I'm just here to make sure he's dead! 1969- THE BIRTH OF THE INTERNET- After the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Defense Department asked the Rand Corporation to create a communication system that could survive Russian atomic bombs. They conceived of a “net” of computers all in communication with another around the world. Because there was no center, a bomb could not knock out the entire system. In the basement of UCLA’s Boelter Hall, Lick Licklider, Vincent Cerf, Robert Kahn, Lawrence Roberts and Bob Taylor set up the first call to Stanford. “ We typed the “L” and we asked on the phone “ Did you see the “L”? “Yes, we see the “L,” was the response. Then we typed O and asked Did you see the O?” Yes, we see the O” was the response. Then we typed G, and then the system crashed!” But when they rebooted, and the system sprung to life again. The people at UCLA were able to type in LOG, to which the Stanford folks replied IN. They called it ARPANET- Advanced Research Projects Agency-NET, a few years later Internet. By 1978 the Defense Department didn’t want to run the thing anymore so they offered to turn over the entire Internet to ATT for free. AT&T said no thanks, we just don’t see the value in it. In 1992 the US government made the Internet public and the rush was on.
Sunday, October 28, 2012
Birthdays: Elsa Lanchester, Cleo Lane, Charlie Daniels, Evelyn Waugh, Jonas Salk, Bruce Jenner, Joan Plowright, Bill Gates, Chef August Escolfiere the great French Chef who created Peche Melba and moved French cuisine to the front rank of world cooking, Charles Grovesnor the founder of National Geographic magazine, Joaquin Phoenix is 38, Dennis Franz 70, Julia Roberts is 45. 1726-Johnathan Swift published "Gulliver's Travels"-"To Vex the World rather than Divert it."
Saturday, October 27, 2012
B-Days: Captain James Cook, Theodore Roosevelt, Dylan Thomas, Nicolo Paganinni, Sylvia Plath, Roy Lichtenstein, John Cleese, Freddy De Cordova, Bernie Wrightson 1886-Musical fantasy "Night on Bald Mountain" premiered in Russia. Composer Modest Mussogorsky worked as a florist during the day and wrote music at night. He was convinced he couldn’t make a living otherwise. 1947- The "You Bet Your Life" quiz show premiered on radio. "Say the Secret Word and Win Fifty Dollars". Comedian Groucho Marx had struggled after his brothers act the Marx Brothers broke up. In a live radio program with Bob Hope at one point Hope dropped his script. Before he could pick it up Groucho stepped on the pages, threw his own away and the two improvised their conversation. The result was much funnier that anything anybody had heard. The producer of the show was so impressed he hired Groucho and built a quiz show around him. 1954 was the premiere of Walt Disney's first TV show, the Disneyland Show. Walt broke with the other Hollywood producers who were boycotting TV. It went on for 40 years under several other names. Walt filmed the shows in color, because he knew some day we'd all have color tv's. 1966- Bill Melendez's Peanuts TV special "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown'. This film was the last film score of jazz musician Vince Guaraldi, who created the unique sound of Charlie Brown cartoons.
Friday, October 26, 2012
Birthdays: Danton, Leon Trotsky, Vladimir “Bill” Tytla - Disney animator who gave life to Dumbo, Grumpy and the Devil from Bald Mountain, Francois Mitterand, Domenico Scarlatti, Charles W. Post of Post Cereals, Bob Hoskins is 70, Mahalia Jackson, Clive Barker, Bootsie Collins, Marla Maples, Dylan McDermott, Cary Elwes, Jaclyn Smith, Hilary Rodham Clinton, Seth McFarlane is 39, Pat Sito 1952- David Wolper’s documentary Victory at Sea, with it’s majestic score by Richard Rogers first premiered. 1955- The Greenwich Village Voice, later called simply The Voice, first published. 1970- Doonesbury born. Yale law graduate Gary Trudeau was convinced by Jim Andrews his classmate now an editor at Universal Press syndicate, to recreate his funny comic he did in the campus newspaper .It's original name was 'Bull Tales". 1984-" I’LL BE BACK…" James Cameron’s sci-fi thriller THE TERMINATOR first released. Arnold Schwarzenegger was considered a Hollywood joke before this film made him a major star. An interesting what-if, was that before Arnold was cast in the role of the cyborg assassin, the producers were first considering O.J. Simpson.
Thursday, October 25, 2012
Birthdays: Pablo Picasso, George Bizet, Johann Strauss Jr., Bobby Knight, Helen Reddy Minnie Pearl, Whit Bissell, Lyle Lovett. Leo G. Carroll, Bill Barty the famous Little Person celebrity, John Matusak, Julia Roberts, Ty Wong, Art Director of Bambi, is 102! 1903- New York’s New Amsterdam Theater opened with a gala performance of A Midsummer’s Night Dream. The New Amsterdam boasted all Art Nouveau decoration, the first theater in a steel girdered building and a new style of floating balcony that didn’t obstruct the view with support pillars, an effect to be copied by movie houses throughout the world. The Great Ziegfield staged his great Follies there and in the rooftop garden theater for only the cream of New York society. The theater fell into decrepitude and in the 1970’s was a porno house, but the Walt Disney Company restored it to it’s Gilded Age glory in 1996.
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Birthdays: Roman Emperor Domitian, Bob Kane the creator of Batman, Moss Hart, Jiles Perry Richardson better known as the Big Bopper, F. Murray Abrahams is 71, Enkwase Mfume, Y.A. Tittle, Sara Josepha Hale 1788- who wrote the poem "Mary Had a Little Lamb", animator Preston Blair, Kevin Kline is 64 1947- Walt Disney testified to the House UnAmerican Activities Committee (HUAC) as a friendly witness. He accused members of the Cartoonists Guild and the League of Women Voters –which he mistakenly called the League of Women Shoppers as being infiltrated by Communists "Seeking to subvert the Spirit of Mickey Mouse'. 1975- The Musical play A Chorus Line opened. 1994- Disney TV series Gargoyles premiered.
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Birthdays; Johnny Carson, Adlai Stevenson, Pele, Weird Al Yankovic, Dwight Yoakham, Michael Crichton, Chi-Chi Rodriquez, Sam Raimi, Phillip Kaufman, porn star Jasmine St. Claire, Gummo Marx, Ang Lee is 58, Ryan Reynolds is 36, Sam Raimi is 53 1940- Shooting on the film Citizen Kane wrapped. 1941- Walt Disney’s Dumbo premiered. 1971-Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida opened. 2001- Apple Computers launched the i-pod.
Monday, October 22, 2012
Birthdays: Sarah Bernhardt, Timothy Leary, Franz Liszt, Doris Lessing, Joan Fontaine, Derek Jacobi, Christopher Lloyd (Judge Doom in Roger Rabbit) is 74, Annette Funicello, Brian Boitano, Catherine Deneuve is 69, Spike Jonze is 43. 1938-THE BIRTHDAY OF THE XEROX COPY- Chester Carlson working with an amateur chemistry set behind a beauty parlor in Astoria Queens creates the first xerox copy. He took his invention to Edison, G.E., RCA and IBM who all rejected it. Finally a little firm that produced photographic paper for Kodak called the Haloid Company bought it. They later changed their named to Xerox. 1939- The first televised football game- The Brooklyn Dodger's 23 Philadelphia Eagles 14. 1962- Twentieth Century Fox chief Daryl Zanuck fired long suffering director Joe Mankiewicz off of the editing of the spectacle Cleopatra. Mankiewicz had shot a 6 hour movie he wanted shown as two films. Zanuck wanted one big movie at half that size. After a lot of embarrassing feuding in the press, Zanuck rehired Mankiewicz and he recut Cleopatra, When Elizabeth Taylor saw the finished film, she threw up. Cleopatra became one of the biggest disasters in Hollywood History.
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Birthdays: Katushika Hokusai, Dizzy Gillespie, Whitey Ford, Alfred Nobel, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Carrie Fisher is 56, Patty Davis (Ronnie Reagan's daughter), Benjamin Netanyahu, Sir Malcolm Arnold, Manfred Mann, Sir Georg Solti, Angus MacFadyen, Ken Watanabe is 53, Kim Kardasian is 32. 1932- The film Red Dust premiered. It made stars out of Clark Gable and Jean Harlow. 1959- Six months after the death of Frank Lloyd Wright his last creation the Guggenheim Museum in New York City opened.
Saturday, October 20, 2012
Birthdays: Sir Christopher Wren, Bela Lugosi (born Bela Blasgow from Lugosz), Charles Ives, Arthur Rimbaud, Black Panther Bobby Seale, Juan Marichal, Tom Petty, Art Buchwald, Arlene Francis, Grandpa Jones, Mickey Mantle, Jerry Orbach the voice of Lumiere in Beauty & the Beast, Rex Ingram, Dr. Joyce Brothers, Michael Dunn, Snoop Dogg (born Calvin Broadus Jr) is 41, Viggo Mortensen is 54 1921- Rudolf Valentino starred in The Sheik, which premiered today. 1939- Frank Capra’s film “Mr Smith Goes to Washington” opened. 1947- 'ARE YOU NOW OR HAVE YOU EVER BEEN...' Judge J. Parnell Thomas banged the gavel opening the House Committee on UnAmerican Activites investigation into Communist infiltration into the Motion Picture Business. HUAC was set up in 1938 as the Dies Committee to keep an eye on pro-Nazis groups operating in German and Italian immigrant organizations, but by 1944 it's emphasis had switched to Communist espionage. Investigations of the army or top civil servants like Dean Acheson was dull stuff, New Deal hating conservatives knew investigating Hollywood would yield the big headlines and jazz up public interest. Jack Warner, Louis B. Mayer, Ronald Reagan and Walt Disney were the first in line to name names. Lucille Ball, Sterling Hayden, Zero Mostel, Ginger Rogers and Lloyd Bridges admitted they had once held communist party memberships. The Blacklisted animators included John Hubley, Dave Hilberman and Tony Eastman. The anti-commie hysteria turned Hollywood inside out and the bitter feelings remained for the rest of their lives. 1955- Harry Belafonte recorded the Banana Boat Song, that made him a star- Day-o! 1955- J.R.R. Tolkein’s last book of the Lord of the Rings published. The Return of the King.
Friday, October 19, 2012
Birthdays: Martha "Patsy" Jefferson, Auguste Lumiere, John Le Carre', Peter Tosh, Amy Carter, Jack Anderson, Peter Max, John Lithgow, Robert Reed of the Brady Bunch, Evander Holyfield, Patricia Ireland, Michael Gambon, Trey Parker of South Park is 42 1987- Black Monday, The STOCK MARKET CRASH OF '87. The Dow falls 508 points. It was partly blamed on the Arbitrage high speed automated stock trading system going bananas and turning a downswing . Venerable old firms like E.F. Hutton sank beneath the waves -having their chairman Bob Froman plead guilty to 22 million dollars worth of bank and mail fraud didn't help either. However in six months most of the losses were regained, some traders saying the recovery was spurred by a bronze statue of bulls placed at the foot of Wall Street. A system of emergency circuit breakers were installed to prevent arbitrage from flipping out again. In Sept 2008, the Dow fell 750 points. 1990- Kevin Costner’s film Dances With Wolves premiered.
Thursday, October 18, 2012
Birthdays: Cannaletto, Lotte Lenya, Wynton Marsalis, George C. Scott, Pierre Trudeau, Lee Harvey Oswald, Mike Dytka, Peter Boyle, Inger Stevens, Violetta Chamorro, Wendy Wasserstein, Wynton Marsalis, Martina Navratilova, Jean Claude Van Damme, the Muscles from Brussels- is 52. 1926- In Hollywood, Sid Grauman's Egyptian Theater opens. 1967- Walt Disney's last cartoon done under his supervision "the Jungle Book." premiered. Disney had died the previous December. 1974- Tobe Hooper's low budget cult film Texas Chainsaw Massacre first opened. Despite one film critic calling it " a bunch of sick crap" it became a huge hit.
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Birthdays: Arthur Miller, Rita Hayworth, Jean Arthur, Montgomery Clift, Jimmy Breslin, Tom Poston, Gary Puckett, Margot Kidder, Evil Knievel, Jerry Seigel (Superman co-creator), Virgil 'Vip' Partch, Charles Kraft the sliced cheese king, Beverly Garland- star of Attack of the Alligator People, George Wendt, Mike Judge is 50, Eminem 1990- IMDB.com, the Internet Movie Data Base started up. 2005- The Colbert Report with Steven Colbert premiered on Comedy Central.
Monday, October 15, 2012
Birthdays: Lord Cardigan, Eugene O'Neill, Noah Webster, Dave DeBusschere, David Ben-Gurion, Angela Lansbury is 87, Gunter Grass, Linda Darnell, Charles Colson, Tim Robbins, Susanne Somers is 66, David Zucker, Flea of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Tim Robbins is 54. 1923- Walt Disney Studios Born. 22 year old Walt and his older brother Roy sign a deal with M.J.Winkler for six "Alice in Cartoonland" short cartoons. Budget-$1,500 each. 1952- Charlie Chaplin’s film "Limelight" premiered in London. Chaplin had shot the film in Hollywood but released it in Europe because he had been driven into exile by McCarthyite Red Baiters. 1976- Disco Duck by Rick Dees became #1 on the pop charts.
Birthdays: Quintus Virgilius-Virgil 70 BC, Mughal Emperor Akbar the Great 1542, Oscar Wilde, Fredrich Nietszche, Mikail Lermontov, John L. Sullivan,Disney animation director Burt Gillett, P.G. Wodehouse, Penny Marshall, Mario Puzo, Chuck Berry is 86 1905- First Little Nemo comic strip by Winsor McCay premiered. 1940- Charlie Chaplin’s film The Great Dictator premiered. 1946 Walt Disney’s film Make Mine Music premiered. 1951- THE FIRST I LOVE LUCY SHOW- The most successful family sitcom in history began its pilot episode this night. CBS and Phillip Morris had wanted Lucille Ball to transfer her popular radio show-“My Favorite Husband” to television. The story of the family life of Ricky Ricardo, a Cuban immigrant nightclub band leader, his daffy wife Lucy and their landlord friends Fred and Ethel Murtz became an overnight sensation. The show was shot on film instead of live TV and it was produced in Los Angeles instead of New York City because Lucy and Dezi Arnez refused to relocate back east. The show also pioneered the three camera shooting system still used to day. When Lucille Ball was off being pregnant, the show proved re-runs could be just as popular as first time showings. The January 1953 episode of little Ricky’s birth drew more viewers than the inauguration of President Eisenhower.
Sunday, October 14, 2012
B-Days: William Penn-1644, Joseph Plateau, Dwight Eisenhower, Lillian Gish, Eamon De Valera, e.e.cummings, Jack Arnold the director of the Creature from the Black Lagoon, Ralph Lauren- real name Ralph Lifshitz, Roger Moore is 86. Mia Wasikowska is 23. 1873-MY NAME IS MUYBRIDGE. One night a carriage drove up from San Francisco to the Yellow Jacket Mine near Calistoga in the north Napa Valley. A man asked for the foreman Major Harry Larkyns. When Larkyns answered the door the man quietly said to him:”Good Evening, Major. My name is Muybridge. Here is the answer to the message you sent my wife earlier. “ He pulled out a pistol and shot Larkyns through the heart, killing him instantly. The killer was the famous Photographer and Motion Picture Pioneer Edweard Muybridge. Muybridges’ young wife Flora had been having an affair with Larkyns while he was working on his Motion Studies Series in Palo Alto. Muybridge discovered the son she bore him was not his. They were even calling him Little Harry behind his back. The jury that convened in Napa did not hang the artist-inventor. In the Code of the Old West proven adultery was considered a justifiable homicide. And Governor Leyland Stanford was sponsoring Muybridge. So he was acquitted. Flora Muybridge divorced him in 1875 and after her early death two years later, he gave Little Harry to a San Francisco Orphans Asylum and refused to pay for his upkeep. 1926- Happy Birthday Winnie the Pooh! A.A. Milne’s first book of Pooh, Eeyore, Piglet and Christopher Robin debuted this day. 1954- First day of shooting on Cecil B. DeMille’s remake of the Ten Commandments staring Charlton Heston out in the Egyptian desert. 1959- Errol Flynn died of a heart attack in Vancouver. Exhausted by overindulgence in his favorite vices, doctors said the 50 year old movie star had the body of a 70 year old. A descendant of one of the Bounty mutineers, the Tasmanian born actor's last film was ' Cuban Rebel Girls'.
Saturday, October 13, 2012
Birthdays: Revolutionary War heroine Mary Ludwig nicknamed Molly Pitcher, Paul Simon is 68, Lily Langtry-the Jersey Lilly, Lenny Bruce, Larraine Day, Nipsy Russell, Cornel Wilde, Margaret Thatcher, LA Times cartoonist Herblock, Yves Montand, Nancy Kerrigan, Sammy Hagar, Marie Osmond, Kelly Preston, Chris Carter, Sascha Baron-Cohen is 41 1903- Victor Herbert’s operetta Babes in Toyland premiered. 1904- Sigmund Freud's book 'The Interpretation of Dreams" first published. 1938- RKO Pictures was having a salary dispute with their singing cowboy Gene Autry. So they cast around for another handsome cowpoke. Today they signed a would-be dentist from a vocal group called the Sons of the Pioneers named Leonard Slye. He became a star with the film “Under Western Skies” under his new name- Roy Rogers. 1947- Kukla, Fran & Ollie debuted on television. Burt Tillstrom was the creator and puppeteer and Fran was his wife. 1978- Mickey Mouse gets his star on Hollywood Blvd Walk of Fame.
Friday, October 12, 2012
Birthdays: "God's Imp"King Edward VI- only son of Henry VIII, Emperor Pedro Ist of Brazil 1798, Helena Modjeska, Ralph Vaughn-Williams, Alastair Crowley, Luciano Pavarrotti, animator Izzy Klein, Joan Rivers, Dick Gregory, Tony Kubek, Susan Anton, Kirk Cameron, Hugh Jackman is 44 1928- The first Winnie the Pooh Story featuring Tigger published. 1994- Jeffrey Katzenberg, David Geffen and Steven Speilberg announce their new studio would be called DreamWorks SKG.