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.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Birthdays: Eleanor Roosevelt, Henry Heinz the Ketchup king, Jerome Robbins, Carl Hubbard, Ron Leibman, John Candy, Omar Shariff is 80, Ben Vereen, Art Blakey, Luke Perry, Joan Cusak, Sig Ruman– the fat actor with the goatee and the over-the-top German accent in the Marx Brothers comedies, Ninotchka and Stalag 17 1944-“ To Have and to Have Not,” written by Ernest Hemingway premiered. The movie paired Humphrey Bogart with a sultry Harpers model turned actress named Betty Persky, now changed to Lauren Bacall. Bacall originally had a higher voice but director Howard Hawks told her to go behind the soundstage and scream for an hour every day to bring her voice down to a dusky, sexy alto. It worked on Bogart, who fell in love and married her despite his being 44 and she 20 years old. The nicknamed each other Slim and Steve after the characters in the film.“If you want me, just whistle. You know how to whistle, don’t you? Just put your lips together and blow.” 1960- The Bugs Bunny Show premiered on TV. “Overture, hit the lights! This is it, we’ll hit the heights, and oh what heights we’ll hit…..etc..” 1967-The NY Times printed an image of a female nude by Bell Lab scientist Ken Knowlton. It was done on a computer as a digital mosaic of thousands of numbers. It was a breakthrough image in CGI. 1968- Apollo 7 blasted off. 1975- NBC needed a Saturday replacement for Best Of Carson reruns, so Lorne Michaels’ TV show SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE premiered. Featuring the Not-Yet-Ready-For-Prime-Time Players: John Belushi, Dan Ackroyd, Gilda Radner, Garret Morris, Chevy Chase, Lorraine Newman, Gilda Radner, Jane Curtin and Mike O’Donaghue. First guest host George Carlin did his opening monologue while high. Albert Brooks did a short film and Andy Kaufman did his Mighty Mouse lip sync routine. Paul Shaefer conducted the music and the show was held in NBC’s Studio 8H, which was built originally for Maestro Arturo Toscanini and the NBC Symphony of the Air. At the last moment a sketch by young Billy Crystal was cut from the show. The show also revived the career of announcer Don Pardo, who had trouble finding work since the original Jeopardy Show was canceled.
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Birthdays: Martin Luther, Giuseppe Verdi, Henry Cavendish 1731- the chemist who discovered Hydrogen, Helen Hayes, Disney art director Mary Blair, Louis Lumiere, Thelonius Monk, Warner Bros animator Rod Scribner, LaVerne Harding one of the first American women to become an animator, Alberto Giacometti Tanya Tucker, Harold Pinter, James Clavel, Jodi Benson the Little Mermaid, Bradley Whitford is 53, Sharon Osbourne is 58 1953- "Winky Dink and You" show. Children were invited to place a piece of celluloid acetate on their t.v. screens from a kit and help Winky Dink through numerous adventures by drawing on their t.v. screens. Of course many kids didn’t wait for the acetate but just drew on their family TVs with indelible markers. The birth of Interactive T.V. -? 1957- RKO Studios, who produced King Kong, The John Ford Westerns and the Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers musicals, was sold to Desilu- the television production company of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnez. 1962- The BBC banned on air play of a novelty record The Monster Mash, by Bobby Picket. For some reason they considered it offensive. 1968- Jane Fonda does her zero-gravity striptease and runs into a kinky organist, the film Barbarella premiered. 1980- Actor William 'Billy" Thomas, also known in the Our Gang kiddie comedies as Buckwheat, died at 49. His last words weren't "O' Taayy !" 1985- Orson Welles and Yul Brynner die one hour apart. They were both 70. Welles had just finished taping yet another appearance on the Merv Griffin Show. Brynner had a furious smoking habit, supposedly leaving one lit cigarette in every room of his house as he paced around thinking. When he knew he was dying of the stuff, he recorded several television spots to be aired after his death. He looked squarely at camera and said: " I smoked. -Don't."
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Birthdays: Camille Saint Saens, E. Howard Hunt, Jacques Tati, Alastair Sim, Bruce Catton, Joe Pepitone, cartoonist Mike Peters, Savannah, John Lennon, his son Sean Lennon, E. Howard Hunt, Scott Bakula, Tony Shalloub, Peter Tosh, Charles Rudolph Walgren-the inventor of the modern Drugstore, Guillermo Del Toro is 47, Tony Schaloub is 59, Pixar director Pete Doctor is 44. 1938 Eugene O'Neill's play 'The Iceman Cometh' opened. 1951- RKO Pictures asked Marilyn Monroe to please wear panties while working, She was distracting the film crew. 1986- The Fox Network's first program-the Joan River's Show, premiered. That show didn't last, but future hits like The Simpson's, Married With Children and the X-Files made Fox a major network in ten years.
Monday, October 8, 2012
Birthdays: Eddie Rickenbacker, Rev Jesse Jackson, Juan Peron, David Carradine, Art Babbitt -the creator of Goofy, Chevy Chase is 69, Paul Hogan, Ruben Mamoulian, Edward Zwick, Johnny Ramone, Sigourney Weaver is 63, Matt Damon is 42 1945- "Bloody Monday" During a big strike three hundred and fifty armed thugs club their way through picketing Warner Bros. film workers. Jack Warner had stationed sharpshooters behind the studios billboards. A logo on the studio wall said:" Better Movies through Better Citizenship", which the union folk changed to "Better Movies through Better Marksmanship". Similar scenes were happening in front of Fox and MGM. 1957- Walter O'Malley announced the move of the Brooklyn Dodgers to Los Angeles. 1957- Jerry Lee Lewis recorded his hit Goodness Gracious, Great Balls of Fire. 1971- John Lennon first released the song Imagine.
Sunday, October 7, 2012
Birthdays: Hans Holbein, Joe Hill, Andy Devine, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Henry Wallace, June Allyson, Al Martino, Neils Bohr, Ameil Buraka, Johnny Cougar Mellencamp, Toni Braxton, Yo Yo Ma 1870- Writer Edgar Allen Poe was found sprawled over a barrel in a Baltimore street, dressed in someone else's clothing. He was taken to a hospital where he died raving at the walls. It was thought he died from heavy alcohol abuse. Recently scholars theorize he may have died from a brain tumor or diabetes impacted by alcohol sensitivity, which would explain the violent mood swings, and that he drank heavily to deaden the pain. Another scholar also theorized that the symptoms strongly point to rabies. Poe loved cats and as we all know there was no rabies shot or test at the time. 1947 The Actor's Studio opened, teaching the Stanislavski Method, sometimes called Method Acting. The group later suffered a feud between it’s two top teachers-Lee Strassberg and Sandy Meisner. Ask any old actor if they were with Lee or Sandy, odds were they sided with one and hated the other. 1957-Dick Clark’s T.V. show American Bandstand debuts. 1960- The movie Spartacus opened. Producer/star Kirk Douglas had been using blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo for the script , smuggling him in and out of the lot for story meetings. Finally Douglas got fed up and ordered Trumbo to be brought out in the open as the movie's true author. This was considered the official end of the Hollywood Blacklist era, which had lasted since 1947. After director Anthony Mann left the project Douglas hired Stanley Kubrick, who had such a hard time he afterward left Hollywood never to return. 1993- Steven Spielberg's "Jurassic Park" earned $ 712 million dollars just in North American box office. After Jurrasic Park, everyone wanted computer graphics in their movies.
Saturday, October 6, 2012
Birthdays: Alfred Lord Tennyson, Jenny Lind the Swedish Nightingale, George Westinghouse, Janet Gaynor, Carol Lombard, Karol Szymanowski, Thor Heyderthal, wrestler Bruno Sammartino, Britt Eckland, Le Corbusier, Elizabeth Shue is 49, Sean William Scott, Jeremy Sisto 1927-"THE JAZZ SINGER"with Al Jolson debuts. Okay, Okay, Somebody made a sound picture in 1924 and also something called "Footlights of New York" from 1926 but hey, you know what?- who cares! THIS was the movie that made "Talkies" a reality. The premiere was also the occasion for Sid Grauman to throw the first big Hollywood premiere at the Grauman’s Chinese Theater with limos and red carpets and spotlights. 1932-THE BIRTHDAY OF WONDER WOMAN. William Moulton Marston was an educational consultant in 1940 for Detective Comics, Inc.(now better known as DC Comics). Marston saw that the DC line, seeing it filled with images of super men such as Green Lantern, Batman, Superman, was left wondering why there was not a female hero. Max Gaines, then head of DC Comics, was intrigued by the concept and told Marston that he could create a female comic book hero - a "Wonder Woman." Marston did that, using a pen name that combined his own middle name with the middle name of Gaines: Charles Moulton Marston's 'good and beautiful woman' made her debut in All Star Comics #8. 1959- “Pillow Talk”premiered, the first romantic comedy pairing Doris Day and Rock Hudson. Stanley Shapiro won a best screenplay Oscar for it. The film typified the wink-wink attitude about sex before the 1960’s Sexual Revolution and defined Doris Day’s reputation as the wholesome, girl-next-door archetype. 1966- California became the first state to officially declare LSD illegal. Hippies in San Francisco celebrate by rallying in Golden Gate Park in the thousands, and all taking a tab together. 1968- In Huntington Cal, Troy Perry and 12 others started the first Gay & Lesbian Church . 1971- William Freidkin’s gritty cop movie the FRENCH CONNECTION premiered. The film won best picture, director and actor Oscars, made a major star out of Gene Hackman. One unforeseen result was the movie stimulated interest in pursuing the investigation of the real French-Corsican Mafia heroin trafficking in the US. That mob was soon broken up. The two real life detectives the film was based on- Eddie Egan and Sonny Corso, booth retired from the NYPD and pursued careers in show biz.
Friday, October 5, 2012
Birthdays: Ray Kroc the founder of MacDonalds restaurants, Louis Lumiere, Vaslav Havel, Larry Fine of the Three Stooges" , Bob Geldorf, Mario Lemieux, Josh Logan, Bill Dana "my name Jose Jimenez", cartoonist Bill Keane (The Family Circus), Clive Barker, Glynis Johns, Donald Pleasance, Maya Lin, Bernie Mac, Karen Allen is 61, Kate Winslet is 37, Guy Pearce is 45, Jesse Eisenberg is 29 1904- According to comedian and playwright Steve Martin, this is the day Pablo Picasso met Albert Einstein at the Cafe Lapin Agile. There was a Cafe in Paris called Lapin Agile that Picasso did like to go, to but he never actually met Einstein. 1905- Happy Birthday T-Rex! Prof. Henry Osborne published a paper on the new bones found in Montana of a sleek hunter- dinosaur. He originally called it Dynamosaurus Imperiosis, but changed it to Tyrannosaurus Rex. 1932- MGM Studios fired famed comic Buster Keaton. 1933- Warner Bros musical Footlight Parade with James Cagney premiered. 1945- The BATTLE OF BURBANK.- Three thousand striking union filmworkers (and a few animators) battled the Burbank police in front of Gate 2 of the Warner Bros. Studio lot. chains, bricks, tear gas, firehoses, burning cars. Jack Warner placed sharpshooters behind those large movie billboards on Barham and Pass. One of the strikeleaders arrested was a background painter for Tex Avery cartoons. Herb Sorrel, the union leader, was pulled into a car and beaten up by gangsters, then arrested for incitement to riot. 1961- The film Breakfast at Tiffany’s opened, with Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly, the song Moon River. 1969- Monty Python's Flying Circus debuted on British television BBC-1. 1969- Former First Lady Jackie Kennedy was seen going into a Manhattan cinema to see the Swedish x-rated film I Am Curious Yellow. Jackie-O beat up the photographer who caught her, but her example spawned a wave called Porn-Chic. 2003- Timothy Treadwell was an author and advocate for the wild grizzly bears of North America. This day near Khalifa Bay Alaska those bears attacked Treadwell and his girlfriend Anne Huguenard and tore them to pieces. When authorities brought down the bear in question, after being shot 21 times, human remains were found in his stomach. When Treadwell appeared on the David Letterman TV Show the previous year, Letterman joked:" Is it going to happen that one day we read a news article about you being eaten by one of these bears?" Werner Herzog did a film about his life. Grizzly Man.
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Birthdays: President Rutherford B. Hayes, Frederick Remington, Jean Millet, Buster Keaton, Englebert Dolfuss, Charlton Heston, Susan Sarandon is 66, Armand Assante, Damon Runyon, Alvin Tofler author of Future Shock, Anne Rice, Alicia Silverstone is 36, Liev Schreiber is 45 1931- Chester Gould's "Dick Tracy" comic strip debuts. 1943- Actor Clark Gable was awarded the Distinguished Flying Medal for flying combat missions over Germany. It was said Gable took these deliberately dangerous missions instead of doing USO shows out of a death-wish in grief for his wife Carole Lombard, who was killed in a plane crash. 1950- The first Peanuts comic strip introducing Charlie Brown’s dog Snoopy.
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
Birthdays: Gore Vidal, Mikail Lermontov, Harvey Kurtzman, Chubby Checker, James Herriot, Eleanor Duse, Emily Post, Leo McCarey the director of the Marx Brothers Duck Soup and many Laurel & Hardy shorts, Steven Reich, Dave Winfield, Tommy Lee, Neve Cambell, Clive Owen is 48 1910- English comedians Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel first arrive in the U.S. with a touring British vaudeville company, the Fred Karno Troupe. 1955- 'Good Morning, Captain.' The Captain Kangaroo kiddy Show debuted on television. 1955- The Mickey Mouse Club TV show premiered. “Who’s the leader of the Band that’s Made for you and me…?” 1957-Walter Lantz's The Woody Woodpecker T.V. show debuts. 1961- The Dick Van Dyke Show premiered. It made stars of Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore and was written by ex-Sid Caesar writer Carl Reiner and Rocky & Bullwinkle writer Alan Burns. 2003- The Siegfried and Roy magic show in Las Vegas comes to an end after a large Bengal Tiger attacks Roy Horn and tears his throat open in front of an audience. Most thought it was part of the act. Dreamworks Animation was just completing it's show Father of the Pride, with a Sigfried and Roy characters
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Birthdays: King Richard III, Nat Turner, Mahatma Ghandi, Spanky MacFarland, Julius Marx known as Groucho Marx, Bud Abbott, Moses Gunn, Graham Greene, LeRoy Shield (composer of the music in the Hal Roach comedies), Donna Karan, Gordon Sumner known as Sting is 62, Lorraine Bracco, Tiffany, Kelly Ripa 1933- Library of Congress musicologist John Lomax met with an Arkansas chaingang convict named Hudlan Ledbetter, who everyone called Leadbelly. He recorded a cotton picking work song of his called "the Rock Island Line'. Leadbelly became famous and recorded his own version 3 years later. Lomax died in 2002. 1937 - Ronald Reagan, just 26 years old, made his acting debut this day with Warner Brothers release of "Love is in the Air". 1950- Charles Schulz's "Peanuts" comic strip debuts. Good ol' Charlie Brown was the name of a fellow post office worker all the guy's liked to play jokes on. Schulz's idea 'little folks' was initially rejected by all the major comic syndicates. Three months before the strip was accepted his girlfriend broke off their engagement. He had left his job at the post office and she was convinced he would never amount to anything. At the time of his death Charles Schulz had mountains on the moon named for his characters, and he was arguably the richest visual artist on earth. 1955 - "Good Eeeeeeevening." The master of mystery movies, Alfred Hitchcock, presented his brand of suspense to millions of viewers on CBS on this night. 1957- Raintree County, the first film in Panavision. 1958- The Huckleberry Hound show. 1959- The television show the Twilight Zone debuts. Producer/writer Rod Serling had fought network execs for months that a mystery-suspense show could compete with all the Doctor and Cowboy shows on TV. He originally wanted Orson Welles to be the host of the show but when Welles asked for too much money, Serling decided to do it himself. He wrote 90 episodes. He said he got the name Twilight Zone from a term airline pilots used for the area when both the clouds and ground are invisible from view and you lose your bearings. 1982- Godfrey Reggio’s haunting documentary Koyaanisqatsi premiered at Radio City Music Hall. Music by Phillip Glass. 1985- Actor Rock Hudson died of AIDS. The first major celebrity to die of the disease.
Monday, October 1, 2012
Birthdays: Vladimir Horowitz, Julie Andrews is 77, Walter Matthau, Richard Harris, Phillipe Noiret, James Whitmore, Pres.Jimmy Carter is 88, Everet Sloane, Rod Carew, Stanley Holloway, Tom Bosley, Max Morath, Randy Quaid, Cindy Margolis 1945- Looney Tunes director Frank Tashlin left the cartoon business to work full time at Paramount doing live action movies. He wrote for the Marx Brothers and later directed the Dean Martin Jerry Lewis comedies. 1955- The Honeymooners with Jackie Gleason, Jayne Meadows and Art Carney premiered on TV. 1968-George Romero's weird film "Night of the Living Dead' premieres. 1982- Disney's EPCOT opens. 1987- The Whittier Earthquake rocks L.A. 5.9 on the Richter Scale killed 8 and caused millions in damage. 1992 -The Cartoon Network started.