Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Birthdays: Elector Johann-Frederich the Magnanimous, Franz Lehar, Joachim Von Ribbentropp, Max Skladanowsky, Jaroslav Hasek, Eve Arden, Jill Clayburgh, Alice B. Toklas, Isaiah Thomas, Cloris Leachman, Jane Campion, Al Lewis, Bill Plympton is 67, Lars von Trier, Burt Young, Willie Nelson is 80, Kirsten Dunst is 31 1900- John Luther Jones, called CASEY JONES died in a spectacular train crash near Vaughn Mississippi. Jones' freight train was running 75 minutes late so he stoked up his engine to 100 mph. Suddenly a switching error put a passenger train in his path. Jones stayed at the controls trying to stop the train while his crew jumped to safety. There was a head on collision but because of Jone’s bravery his was the only death. A brakeman later wrote the famous folksong. Union activists prefer to remember that Jones was a strikebreaker running his train recklessly in defiance of a strike to impress his employers. The union still paid his widow his $3000 dollar life insurance. Folksinger Joe Hill in his song "Casey Jones the Union Scab." tells how when he went to heaven the Angel’s Union Local #23 "fired Casey down the Golden Stair.." 1952 - Mr Potato Head is 1st toy advertised on television. In 2000 Rhode Island declared itself the Mr Potato Head State. the Hasbro Toy Company is headquartered in Pawtucket, a city just outside of Providence. 1988- Tom Hanks married actress Rita Wilson. 1992- BERN, the Geneva particle lab where the World Wide Web was developed by Tim Berner, declared that WWW. aka the Web would be open and free to all with no restrictions or royalties to be paid to them. 1993- The Walt Disney Company announced its’ purchase of top independent film producer Miramax. Ten years later a feud with Michael Eisner caused Miramax founders the Weinsteins to leave and form another company. By the time Miramax was sold in 2010, it was a shadow of it’s former self.. 1997- In the last show of the season, comedian Ellen Degenere’s character Ellen admits to Laura Dern that she’s gay. Disney promptly canceled the Ellen Show. Ellen returns with a talk show that is even more popular.
Monday, April 29, 2013
Birthdays: Duke Ellington , Duke Wellington, Sir Thomas Beacham, Zuben Mehta is 76, Tom Ewell, Rod McKuen, Fred Zinnemann, Jerry Seinfeld is 57, Michelle Pfeiffer is 54, Daniel Day Lewis is 55, Uma Thurman is 42 1771- Artist Benjamin West unveils his painting of the “Death of General Wolfe” at the Royal Academy in London. Wolfe was killed in the Battle of the Plains of Abraham, which decided that Canada would be English. West’s portrayal of Wolfe in his actual uniform instead an idealized Grecian god was considered scandalously realistic and revolutionized painting. 1929- The film "All's Quiet on the Western Front" premiered. The world war one battlefield was constructed on a California ranch and dozens of veterans hired to be extras. When the antiwar film debuted in Germany, Nazis agitators were sent out to Berlin theaters to release rats, skunks and snakes in the theaters to scare people away. The star of the movie Lew Ayres ruined his career when he declared himself a conscientious objector during World War Two. 1944- Dancing Romeos, the last Our Gang comedy short was produced by MGM, which had bought the franchise in 1938 from Hal Roach.
Sunday, April 28, 2013
Birthdays: English King Edward IV (1442), President James Monroe, Lionel Barrymore, Carolyn Jones-aka Morticia Addams of the TV Addams Family, Ann Margaret is 72, Jay Leno is 63, Saddam Hussein, Jean Redpath, James Baker III, Penelope Cruz is 39, Jessica Alba is 34, Godzilla is 58- see below. 1925- T.S. Elliot landed a job at Faber & Fabers Publishing. His enabled the poet to quit his job as a bank teller at Lloyds and continue his literary career. 1937- Italy’s famed movie studio Cinecitta’ opened. 1954- Happy Birthday Godzilla!.The movie by Ichjiro Honda was inspired when a Japanese fishing boat was fatally exposed by radioactive fallout from a U.S. hydrogen bomb test. Godzilla is an Anglicized version of the Japanese Kohjira, which is a combination of Gorilla and Whale. The parallels to the Hiroshima experience reached eerie levels when the film has a long sequence of a funeral dirge sung to the dead of Tokyo as we survey the devastation. The famous roar was done by rubbing a resin-covered glove down some bass fiddle strings. The film was later released in the U.S. with American actor Raymond Burr (actually, Canadian actor..) acting in inserted scenes. The complete Japanese version of the film was not seen in North America until 2004.
Saturday, April 27, 2013
Birthdays: Ulysses S. Grant, King Edward IV, Samuel Morse, Mary Wollenstonecraft, Edward Gibbon, Anouk Aimee, Sheena Easton, Sandy Dennis, Coretta Scott King, Kasey Kasem, Jack Klugman 1784- Over the protests of King Louis XVI, Pierre d’Beaumarchais play The Marriage of Figaro premiered at the Opera Comique in Paris. It was the first play to openly criticize the nobility for being no better than anyone lese except for being born with money. This concept alone was radical and it caused a sensation. Napoleon described it as "The Revolution already in action". 1981- Ringo Starr married Barbera Bach, his costar on the film 'Caveman'. UngaBunga! 1986- Reporter Geraldo Rivera hosted a primetime TV special in an old Chicago Hotel that was once a headquarters for gangster Al Capone. After wasting an hour speculating on discovering buried treasure or mobster skeletons, they broke into a room sealed since 1932. All they found were some old dusty bottles.
Friday, April 26, 2013
Birthdays: Roman Emperor-philosopher Marcus Aurelius, Queen Marie De Medicis, Pasquale Paoli, John James Audubon, Frederick Law Olmstead, Eugene Delacroix, Syngman Rhee, Dr. Lee DeForrest, John Grierson founder of the National Film Board of Canada, Rudolf Hess, Bobby Rydell, Anita Loos, I.M.Pei, Carol Burnett is 80, Eyvind Earle, Giancarlo Esposito is 56, Kevin James, Amos Otis, Joan Chen is 51, Koo Stark, Jimmy Giuffre, Rocker Duane Eddy- 72, Jet Li- born Li Lian jie is 50 1986- Arnold Schwarzenegger aka Conan the Republican, married Maria Shriver, the niece of John F. Kennedy. They separated in 2011 when he revealed he was sctupping the maid.. 1993- NBC announced former Simpsons and Saturday Night Live comedy writer Conan O’Brien would take David Letterman’s old Late Show spot. 2004- Michael Eisner of Disney named to Forbes list of the Worst CEO’s in America.
Thursday, April 25, 2013
Birthdays: Roman emperor Otho -32ad, English King Edward II-1284, Oliver Cromwell-1599, Guiseppi Marconi, Edward R. Murrow, Ella Fitzgerald, Al Pacino is 70, Meadowlark Lemon, Talia Shire, Paul Mazursky, Hank Azaria, Rene Zellwellger is 42 1886- The New York Times attacks the outcry among American union workers for an 8-hour workday (the norm then was 12) as: A Seditious, riotous notion that would collapse the American economy and lead to sloth, drunkenness and debauchery. It was probably the work of foreign extremists." The eight-hour day doesn’t become a norm in America until 1913 (in animation until 1941) and is still under attack today. 1972- Witty, urbane actor George Sanders ( All About Eve, Samson & Delilah, Sher Khan in Jungle Book) had turned age 65. He complained he had been famous and rich and was not looking forward to old age and having a nurse wipe his bottom. So he committed suicide and left a witty, urbane note. "Dear World: I am leaving because I am bored. Adieu, I leave you with your worries in this sweet cesspool."
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Birthdays: Daniel Defoe, William de Kooning, St. Vincent de Paul, Morgan Earp, Jack E. Leonard, Dame Ethel Smyth, Jill Ireland, Eric Bogosian, Sue Grafton, Robert Penn Warren, Barbera Streisand is 71, Cedric the Entertainer is 50, Shirley McLaine is 79 1933-Ub Iwerk's "Fiddlesticks" the first Flip the Frog cartoon, done in a simple two-color process. Iwerks was the first designer and animator of Mickey Mouse, who had left Walt Disney to open his own studio. 1954- Handsome English actor Peter Lawford married John F. Kennedy’s sister Patricia Kennedy. This union would give JFK his link to Hollywood, Frank Sinatra and the RatPack. 1961- First day of shooting on the film King of Kings, the Christ story starring Jeffrey Hunter. Called by one critic” I was a Teenage Jesus” . In 1966 Jeffrey Hunter turned down a TV series after doing the pilot episode. His wife worried that he’d be typecast. The role of Star Trek’s Captain Kirk, it went instead went to William Shatner. 1981- Small companies like Apple and Commodore had dominated the personal computer market while giants like IBM stuck with large business systems. Now IBM weighed in with The IBM PC –personal computer, with basic software language DOS provided by Microsoft. It soon came to dominate the market.
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Birthdays: William Shakespeare, President James Buchanan, Sergei Prokoviev, J.M.W. Turner, Vladimir Nabokov, Senator Stephen Douglas the Little Giant, Shirley Temple is 86, Roy Orbison, Halston, Sandra Dee,Valerie Bertinelli, Lee Majors is 72, Judy Davis, Simone Simon, animator Michael Sporn, Tony Esposito, Michael Moore is 58, Herve Villechaise- da plane ! da plane! 1867- William Lincoln patents the zoetrope, an optical toy predating motion pictures.. 1896-THE FIRST PROJECTED MOVIES IN THE U.S.- The first projection of Thomas Edison’s kinetoscope film by means of Thomas Armat’s Vitascope at Koster & Bials Music Hall on 28th street and Broadway in New York City.. Edison had to be nagged into this by his engineer W.K.L. Dickson. Edison thought projecting movies like the Lumiere Brothers were doing in Europe would never catch on and the future of film was nickelodeon machines. The movie show featured the sultry Annabella the Dancer and a boxing match, but the real hit of the evening was footage of Waves Hitting the Rocks on Shore, which made people instinctively duck to keep from getting wet. 1998- Microsoft chairman Bill Gates introduced Windows 98 to a 4,000 industry leaders. When he ceremonially opened the first window, the system crashed-.Doh!
Monday, April 22, 2013
Birthdays: Queen Isabella I of Castille, Dr. Robert Oppenheimer, Immanuel Kant, Madame De Stael, Alexander Kerensky, Arron Spelling, Eddie Albert, Glen Cambell, Betty Page, Marilyn Chambers, Charlie Mingus, Peter Frampton, John Waters is 67, Jack Nicholson is 76 1876- Composer Peter Tchaikovsky completed his score for the ballet Swan Lake. 1940- Writer Ernest Hemingway cabled his editor Max Perkins from Havana about a new novel he was writing.-" Title is "For Whom the Bell Tolls" from passage John Donne Oxford Book of English bottom page seventy one STOP Please register immediately." 1972- Magnavox announced the Magnavox Odyssey. Created by Ralph Baer in his spare time, it was the first home videogame console. 1978- Comic actors Dan Ackroyd and John Belushi debut two new characters on the Saturday Night Live TV show, Joliet Jake and Ellwood Blues. The Blues Brothers are born. 1996- Christopher Robin Milne dies at age 75. The young boy who’s fascination with a bear in the London Zoo called Winnie inspired his father A.A. Milne to write the Winne the Pooh stories. Christopher Robin wasn’t always appreciative of all the attention. He said of his father: "Someday I’ll write some verses about him and see how He likes it!"
Sunday, April 21, 2013
Birthdays: Edwin S. Porter, Charlotte Bronte', John Muir, Freiderich Froebel the inventor of kindergarten-1782, Anthony Quinn, Patti Lupone, Iggy Pop, Charles Grodin, Anna Mangnani, Andie MacDowell is 55, Tony Danza, Elaine May, Queen Elizabeth II is 87 1921- The Coconut Grove nightclub opened in Hollywood. 1938- Disney animator Bill Tytla married artists model Adrienne LeClerc. 1961- Two groups of British teenage rock bands meet each other for the first time- The Beatles met the Rolling Stones. 1964- British TV viewers double their pleasure- BBC 2 goes on the air. Their first program is Play School. 1997-The first Intergalactic Funeral. The ashes of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry and 1960's drug guru Dr. Timothy Leary were shot into space.
Saturday, April 20, 2013
Birthdays: Harold Lloyd, Juan Miro', Adolph Hitler, Tito Puente, Nina Foch, Gregroy Ratoff, Ryan O'Neal, Daniel Day Lewis, Jessica Lange, Luther Vandross, Don Matingly, Rosalyn Summers, Crispin Glover, George Takei, Carmen Electra is 38, Andy Serkis, Bob Kurtz 1909- Mary Pickford, the first Movie Star, goes in front of a camera for the first time. 1925-The Warner Bros. Moving Picture company merge with Vitagraph and begin experimenting with fixing sound on to film. 1935- Radio program “Your Hit Parade” premiered. 1938- On Hitler’s birthday was the Berlin premiere of Leni Reifenstahl’s film Olympia, about the 1936 Berlin Olympics. 1939- RCA president David Sarnoff dedicates RCA pavilion at World's Fair. First U.S. news event filmed on television. Sarnoff predicted that one day everyone would have a television in their home! 1970- San Rafael Cal, started a tradition of smoking marijuana en masse at 4:20, supposedly the police code for a drug bust. The Greatful Dead took up the tradition and now everyone tokes at 4:20PM. 1974 - Paul McCartney and Wings releases "Band on the Run" 1976 - George Harrison sang the Lumberjack Song with the Monty Python comedy troop. 1977- Woody Allen & Diane Keaton starred in the film “Annie Hall”. Snow White animation done by former Disney artist Chris Ishii.
Friday, April 19, 2013
Birthdays: Paulo Verronese, Elliot Ness, Jayne Mansfield, Dudley Moore, Paloma Picasso, Ashley Judd, James Franco is 35, Kate Hudson is 34, Tim Curry is 67, Anna Porchicova is 26 1927- Mae West found guilty of indecent behavior in writing, producing and starring in a Broadway musical entitled “SEX”. She said:” Everyone thinks I am opposed to censorship. Actually, I’m in favor of censorship. I’ve made a fortune from it!” 1956-Movie star Grace Kelly married Prince Rainier of Monaco. 1970- XEROX PARC – The Xerox Company announced the set up of a research group in Palo Alto Cal. This group pioneered the development of the personal computer and laser printer. 1973- Three years later Xerox Parc booted up the Alto, the first personal computer. They invented a new mouse, point and click windows, graphic interface and digital printer. President Carter installed one in the White House. Yet Xerox didn’t know what to do with them, they were in the copier business. The Alto cost $16,500 each, too expensive for most, so the idea bombed. One day in 1979 a group from Apple visited led by Steve Jobs. The group was inspired by their progress, and they went back to Apple and put what they learned into the development of the Lisa and Apple II Computer.
Thursday, April 18, 2013
Birthdays: Lucrezia Borgia, Franz Von Suppe’, Haley Mills, Leopold Stokowski, Miklos Rosza, Herb Sorell, Wahoo Sam Crawford, Conan O’Brien is 50, James Woods is 66, Eric Roberts, Rick Moranis is 62 1906- THE SAN FRANCISCO EARTHQUAKE . 3,500 deaths and the city destroyed in the most frightening earthquake in U.S. History. Writer Jack London wrote:” Never has a modern Imperial city been so completely destroyed. San Francisco is gone!” Enrico Caruso was in town with the Metropolitan Opera on tour. When he went up to a policeman on the street corner asking for help the cop didn't believe who he was until he sang some Pagiacci. He later sat on his suitcase in front of the ruined Palace Hotel and said- "Helluva Place! Ah’ma ’never coming back!" 1994- Disney’s first theatrical musical Beauty and the Beast A New Musical opened on Broadway.
Wednesday, April 17, 2013
Birthdays: artist Tobias Stummer-1539, Duke Maximillian Ist of Bavaria- leader of the Catholic League 1579, Nikita Khruschev, Thorton Wilder, Clarence Darrow, Arthur Schnabel, Olivia Hussey is 62, Gregor Piatigorsky, Don Kirschner, William Holden, Harry Reasoner, Boomer Eiseason, Sean Bean is 54, Victoria Beckham, Former Disney Chairman Ron Miller, Jennifer Garner is 41 1937 "Porky's Duck Hunt" The birth of Daffy Duck. One legendary story is that newly hired voice actor Mel Blanc in part designed Daffys distinctive lisp to be an impression of the Looney Tunes boss Leon Schlensinger. When they screened this cartoon all the artists stood in dread of how Leon would take the joke. Leon never made the connection that the Ducks voice was an imitation of him:" Gee Fellers, dat Duck iz pretty Ffffunny!" 1971- The song "Joy to the World" by Three Dog Night tops the pop charts .
Tuesday, April 16, 2013
birthdays: King John II “The good” of France (1319), Elisabeth Vignee-Lebrun, Wilbur Wright, Charlie Chaplin, J.P. Morgan, Kingsley Amis, Anatole France, Henry Mancini, Peter Ustinov, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bobby Vinton, Spike Milligan, John Halas, Edie Adams, Hans Sloane, Martin Lawrence is 48, John Cryer is 48, Ellen Barkin is 59, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI is 86. 1787- What some consider the first professionally produced American play- Royall Tyler’s the Contrast- debuted at New York City’s John Street Theater. It was a comedy that poked fun at aristocracy. Gen. George Washington was in the audience. At this time the Broadway theater district and Times Square was a quiet forest clearing. 1828- Spanish artist Francisco Goya died at 82 in Bordeaux, France. Years later when his remains were moved to Madrid it was discovered Goya wasn't alone in his grave. His friend Martin Goesochea's remains were in with him. Maybe there was a two-for-one sale.. 1935- Fibber McGee and Molly debut on radio. 1947- The Zoom Lens patented. 1959- John McCarthy of MIT invented the computer language LISP. This was used in a lot of Symbolics CGI programs. 1983- Disney Channel debuted. 1983- Miyazaki's My Neighbor Totorro debuted in Japan.
Monday, April 15, 2013
Birthdays: Leonardo DaVinci, composer Domenico Gabrieli, Nanak Ist the Guru of the Sikh religion 1469, Charles Wilson Peale, Theodore Rousseau, Henry James, Bessie Smith, Heinrich Klee, Kim Il Sung, Claudia Cardinale is 75, Roy Clark, Emma Thompson is 54, Olympic runner Evelyn Ashford, Alice Braga is 29 Seth Rogen is 31 Emma Watson is 23, Pixar art director Lou Romano 1874- The first Paris show of Impressionist Painting. 1927- First Hollywood star's footprints in cement ceremony at Grauman's Chinese theater. Called Hollywood's most enduring publicity stunt. Norma Talmadge, Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks and Sid Grauman himself are the first to leave their prints. Grauman also invented the classic Hollywood premiere with spotlights, red carpet runways and chauffered limousines. 1934- Chief of production Darryl Zanuck quit Warner Bros. over an argument about employee salary cuts to take over a struggling little movie studio called Twentieth Century Fox, which he turns into a giant. 1935-Kodachrome film developed. First as motion picture film, later for home photography. 1953- Famed illustrator Charles R. Knight died peacefully in a Manhattan hospital. The man who inspired the lush look of such films as 1933 King Kong, his last words were to his daughter Lucy, “Don’t let anything happen to my drawings.” 1983- Tokyo Disneyland opens. 1990- Kennan Ivory Wayans comedy show In Living Color premiered on FOX TV. The show made stars of Marlon Wayans, Damon Wayans, Jamie Fox, Jim Carrey and Fly-Girls Jennifer Lopez and Rosie Perez.
Sunday, April 14, 2013
Birthdays: King Phillip III of Spain, Christian Huygens, Arnold Toynbee, Sir John Gielgud, Menachem Schneerson- the Grand Rabbi of Chabad, Papa Doc Duvalier- Haitian dictator 1907, Robert Doisneau, Rod Steiger, Loretta Lynn, Morton Sobotnick, Frank Serpico, Pete Rose, Julie Christie, Anthony Michael Hall, Steve Martin is 63, Sarah Michelle Geller is 36, Adrien Brody is 40. 1883- Leopold Delibes’ opera Lakme premiered in Paris. 1956- In Redwood City, Cal. Charles Ginsburg, Ray Dolby and Charles Anderson demonstrate the first videotape recording machine. They were going then for a mere $75,000 each. 1960- The musical Bye Bye Birdie opened on Broadway. 1962- Bob Dylan recorded “Blowing in the Wind”. 1963- Beatle George Harrison was impressed by an unsigned rock band he just heard called the Rolling Stones.
Saturday, April 13, 2013
Birthdays: St. Thomas Becket, Thomas Jefferson, Lord North, Samuel Beckett, Dame Eudora Welty, Al Green, Jack Cassidy, Butch Cassidy, Franklin W. Woolworth, Howard Keel, Don Adams, Ricky Schroeder, Peabo Bryson, Ron Perleman, Stanley Donen, Alfred Butts the inventor of Scrabble, Glen Keane is 59 1870- New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art opens. 1939- The film Wuthering Heights starring Lawrence Olivier and Merle Oberon premiered. Sam Goldwyn was disgusted by the headaches to bring this Charlotte Bronte novel to the Hollywood Screen. When asked if he planned to adapt more 19th Century novels for film he replied: "Don’t bring me no more scripts by guys who write with feathers!" 1949- Lead character designer and story artist Joe Grant resigned from Disney Studios, not to return until 1989. 1964- Sidney Poitier became the first African American to win an Oscar for Best Actor for the film Lilies of the Field. The first Oscar for any black actor or actress went to Hattie MacDaniel as Best Supporting Actress for Gone With the Wind in 1939. Best actress was not won until Halle Berry in 2002.
Friday, April 12, 2013
Birthdays: Henry Clay, Lily Pons, Lionel Hampton, Herbie Hancock, Monserrat Caballe', Ann Miller, Tiny Tim, Shannon Dougherty, Andy Garcia is 57, Claire Danes is 34, David Letterman-66 1911- Cartoonist Winsor McCay opened his vaudeville act with his "Little Nemo" animated short. 1912- A slightly built London theater manager and failed author named Abraham “Bram Stoker died. His seven books and several plays made little money in his time. But a decade later one of his novels entitled Dracula made him world famous. 1992- Euro-Disney, now called Disneyland Paris, opened. It attracted only 50.000 visitors the first year, about ten times less than what was expected. The first Disneyland in California drew 100,00 on opening day alone . But it has since crawled back to solvency- it finally paid for itself in 1997.
Thursday, April 11, 2013
Birthdays: Roman Emperor Septimius Severus, Frederick the Warlike of Saxony-1370, Ethel Kennedy, Joel Grey, Louise Lasser, Mason Reese, Oleg Cassini, Cameron Mitchell. Norman McClaren, Bill Irwin, John Milius, Jennifer Esposito 1931- Dorothy Parker resigned her job as drama critic for the New Yorker Magazine. Mrs Parker was known for her witty but caustic reviews like “Her performance ran the gamut from A to B.” She married an actor named Cambell and moved to Hollywood to become a screenwriter. While on her honeymoon the magazine bugged her for some more fixes on an article. She sent a telegram from Paris:” Don’t bother me. F*cking busy. And visa-versa. “ 1950- First day filming on the movie All About Eve. As Bette Davis said “Fasten your seatbelts, its going to be a bumpy night.” 1955- WABD in New York and KTLA in Los Angeles began running pre-1948 Warner Bros cartoon shorts in a half hour format, introducing the baby boomer generation to the world of Bugs, Daffy and Porky. 1979- Ugandan dictator Idi Amin-Dada driven out of power by a Tanzanian invasion. During his reign the mad dictator titled himself "Conqueror of the British Empire" and passed the time trying to wrestle crocodiles, rehearse mock invasions of Israel (a geographic impossibility ) and played drums in his own rock band. 1981- Valerie Bertinelli married rocker Eddie Van Halen. 1983- At that year’s Academy Awards the winner for Best Animated Short was Polish artist Zybigniew Rybcyzinski for his film Tango. During the ceremony he stepped outside for a smoke. When Security guards refused to let him re-enter he became combative, shouting the only English he knew:”I Have Oscar!”. He wound up in jail for assault and his Oscar wound up in the bushes.
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Birthdays: Josef Pulitzer, Lew Wallace, George Arliss, Omar Sharif is 80, Harry Morgan, Max Von Sydow is 84, Ken Griffey Sr, Claire Booth Luce, Chuck Connors, John Madden, Don Meredith, Paul Theroux, David Halberstram, Steven Segal is 62, Orlando Jones, Mandy Moore is 29, Haley Joel Osment is 25 1906- O'Henry's story " The Gift of the Magi " first published. 1923- Peeps invented. The sweet Easter marshmallow confection that is shaped like a yellow baby chick and can stick to most surfaces. 1925- F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Great Gatsby" published by Scribners. 1952-ELIA THE FINK-Film director Elia Kazan ( On the Waterfront, East of Eden,etc.) saved his career but earned the lasting hatred of Hollywood by testifying to the House Un American Activities Committee. He named 8 of his friends as Communists, including writers Clifford Odets and Lillian Hellman. Unlike others who were forced to testify Kazan never expressed any regret for the pain he caused. Many see the irony of 'On the Waterfront' that it's hero is a guy who does the right thing by turning informer. The film was written by Bud Schulberg, who also named names. In 1999 the Academy gave him an honorary Oscar and caused a new firestorm of protest, when Kazan stood next to visibly uncomfortable Robert DeNiro and Martin Scorcese. There an estimated 40% of the audience did not rise or applaud, although on television it seemed louder. That year the American Film Institute preferred to confer it’s lifetime achievement award on Roger Corman, director of Attack of the Giant Crab Monsters. 1953- The Vincent Price film The House of Wax in 3d premiered. 1961- Singer Joan Baez entered the Greenwich Village club called Folk City and was accosted by a funny young man with a nasaly twang ;”Joan Baez! Here, I wrote a song for you!” His name was Bob Dylan. Baez and Dylan became friends and together changed the image of folk music. 1971- Rob Reiner married Penny Marshall. 1973- At Xerox PARC, Dick Schoups team of scientists created Superpaint, the first digital paint and surfacing system for CG images. The first picture on the computer was a photo of Dick holding a sign that read “ It works, sort of.” This technology served as the forerunner for Pixar's Renderman and Disney's CAPS systems. 1985- A new singer named Madonna began her first tour, the Virgin Tour. 1992- Bill Kroyer’s Ferngully the Last Rainforest premiered. 1992- Raunchy- comedian Sam Kinison was killed in a head on collision with a truck on the road to Las Vegas. Ironically, the comedian who had glorified the wild sex, drugs and rock& roll lifestyle was sober at the time, and the truck driver was drunk.
Tuesday, April 9, 2013
Birthdays: Tamerlane, N. Lenin, Paul Robeson, Jean Paul Belmondo, Dennis Quaid, Ward Bond, Seve Balesteros, Carl Perkins, Michael Learned, Tom Lehrer, Paula Poundstone, Cynthia Nixon, Hugh Hefner is 87, Elle Fanning is 15 1914- The first all color film” The World, The Flesh and the Devil” premiered in London. 1948- Variety columnist Ben Mortimer had been needling Frank Sinatra for his advocacy of liberal causes. He accused Old Blue Eyes of draft-dodging and hinted maybe he had pro-Communist sympathies. This day Sinatra responded by meeting Mortimer in front of Ciro's restaurant on Sunset Blvd and punched his lights out. 1953- The first issue of the T.V. Guide.
Monday, April 8, 2013
HAD A GREAT TIME AT THE GENERAL MEETING AT USC TODAY. A FULL HOUSE OF EDUCATORS AND SKYPE HOOKUPS NATIONWIDE. THANKS TO ALL FOR MAKING IT A GREAT SUCCESS. Birthdays: Gautama Buddha –as commemorated by Japanese custom-Kambutsue, Ponce De Leon, King Albert of the Belgians, Mary Pickford, Yip Harburg, Betty Ford, Sonja Henje, Jim Catfish Hunter, Jacques Brel, Julian Lennon, Carmen McCrae, Shecky Green, Douglas Trumbull, Robin Wright-Penn is 47, Patricia Arquette 1876- Amiliare Ponchielli’s opera La Gioconda debuted. The ballet portion is famous as the Dance of the Hours. 1911-Vitagraph releases Winsor McCay's short cartoon "Little Nemo" theatrically. 1973- Famed artist Pablo Picasso died at 91. His last words were 'Drink to me'. On his night table was a comic book drawn by former Disney animator Vip Partch.
Sunday, April 7, 2013
Birthdays St. Francis Xavier, William Wordsworth, Mongo Santamaria, Francis Ford Coppola is 74, Walter Winchell, David Frost, Percy Faith, Daniel Ellsberg, Jerry Brown, Alan Pakula, Billie Holiday, Ravi Shankar, Irene Castle, Wayne Rogers, Stan Winston, James Garner, Olikirk Christenson-the inventor of Lego toys, Russell Crowe is 49, Jacky Chan is 59 1927- An audience at the Bell Laboratory watched a three inch television screen broadcast a sound image of US Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover . 1927- Abel Gances classic film Napoleon premiered at the Paris Opera. Gances active camera and wild editing were years ahead of their time, climaxed by a triptych of large images on three movie screens linked by synchronized projectors. One American man in the audience, Walter Wallin, was inspired to develop the Panavision wide screen lens, used by many modern movies today. 1939-"The Ugly Duckling" the last Disney Silly Symphony short cartoon. 1949-Musical "South Pacific" debuts. Some Enchanted Evening… 1970- The film Midnight Cowboy with Dustin Hoffman and John Voight won the Best Picture Oscar. The first x-rated film to do so. 1990- The Cincinnati Contemporary Art Center opened a show of the photographs of Robert Mapplethorpe that the Corcoran Gallery in Washington DC cancelled. Mapplethorpe’s explicit depictions of gay and s/m lifestyles shocked neoconservative critics of the national endowments for the arts. A media debate on whether government should subsidize or censor art raged, and Dennis Barry the museum director was tried for obscenity. His acquittal was seen as a victory for free expression but the argument cast a pall on future funding of controversial art. 1998- Pop star George Michael was busted after exposing himself to an undercover policeman in a public park men’s room in Beverly Hills. 1998- Lead singer for the Plasmatics, Wendy O.Williams, committed suicide with a shotgun. The outrageously mohawked punk rocker was known for stunts on stage like destroying her amplifiers with a chainsaw, skydiving in the nude, autoeroticism with a sledgehammer and crashing a burning school bus into a wall of television sets. 2155- According to the show Babylon 5 today marked the first contact between humans and the Centauri Alliance. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Saturday, April 6, 2013
Birthdays: Raphael of Urbino, Sacajawea, Ram Dass, Butch Cassidy, Gustav Moreau, Lowell Thomas, Merle Haggard, Billy Dee Williams, George Reeves, Michelle Phillips, Andre Previn, Barry Levinson, Roy Thinnes, John Ratzenberger, Zamfir, Paul Rudd is 44, Zach Braff is 38. 1906-THE FIRST ANIMATED FILM- Cartoonist James Stuart Blackton created sensation when Edison filmed him doing sequential drawings and they seemed to come alive. The film was The Humorous Phases of Funny Faces. Blackton made a fortune, lost it and was hit by a bus in 1941. But his animated antics paved the way for Mickey, Bugs, Bart, Gollum and Laura Croft. 1931- The Little Orphan Annie radio show premiered. Remember kids to drink your Ovaltine and get out your de-coder rings. 1933- the Screen Writer's Guild, later the WGA, formed. It took about seven years for them to unionize screenwriting in Hollywood. Jack Warner called them : "Communists, Radical Bastards and Soap Box Sons of B*tches !" David O. Selznick, who prided himself on running a writer-friendly studio, told them: “You put a picket line in front of my studio and I'll mount a machine gun on the roof and mow you all down !!" Despite these protestations, the Guild today represents all Hollywood writers. 1951- Happy Birthday AstroBoy! According to the 1951 comic book by Osamu Tezuka, today Professor Elephant completed the little boy with the suction cup feet and pointed hairdo. Originally called Tetsuwan Atomo, he was named Astro Boy when Mushi Prod released the animated version in the US in 1961. 1956- Elvis Presley signed his first movie deal with Paramount Pictures. 1974- ABBA, a new disco phenomenon from Sweden is introduced to the world when they win a Eurovision song contest. Mama Mia! 1991- The first episode of Darkwing Duck premiered.
Friday, April 5, 2013
Birthdays: Plato, Swinburne, Booker T. Washington, Josef Lister, Bette Davis, Nadar, Jean Fragonard, Hicks Lokey, Nguyen Van Thieu, historian Robert Bloch, Gale Storm, Washington Atlee-Burpee the mail order seed king, Spencer Tracy, Frank Gorshin, Melvyn Douglas, Walter Huston, Nigel Hawthorne, Peter Greenaway, Gregory Peck, Roger Corman. Agnetha Faltskog of ABBA is 63, Colin Powell is 76 1874- Johann Strauss Jr.’s operetta Die Fledermaus premiered in Vienna. 1931- Fox Film Company dropped their option on young star John Wayne as a dud not going anywhere. Wayne eked out an existence doing cheap westerns for Republic and Monogram until John Ford made him a star in 1939’s Stagecoach. 1945- The first Casper the Friendly Ghost cartoon. 1963- The Lava Lamp invented by Dr Edward Craven Walker. 1965- Julie Andrews had created the role of Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady on Broadway. But when filming the motion picture the studio decided she was not a big enough star so they used Audrey Hepburn with a dubbed singing voice. But Ms Andrews had her revenge .At the Academy Awards My Fair Lady won Best Picture and Rex Harrison best actor, but Julie Andrews won the best actress Oscar for Mary Poppins.
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Birthdays: King Henry IV of England (1361), Washington Irving, William Marcy " Boss" Tweed, Sally Rand the Fan Dancer, Ma Rainey, Iron Eyes Cody, Wayne Newton, Doris Day, Robert Sherwood, Virgil Grissom, Marsha Mason, Melissa Etheridge, Marlon Brando, Amanda Byrnes, David Hyde Pierce, Alec Baldwin is 55, Eddie Murphy is 51 1968- Stanley Kubrick's epic film "2001: A Space Odyssey" premiered. The N.Y. Times review said it was : " Somewhere between hypnotic and boring". Pauline Kael called it "monumentally unimaginative!" Writer Arthur C. Clarke always said HAL the computer was not a coded reference to IBM . At the Oscars, Clarke and Kubrick lost the best screenplay award to Mel Brooks for the Producers. 2001 won only one Oscar, for visual effects. It was the only Oscar a Stanley Kubrick film ever won. 1973- Standing on the corner of 6th Ave in Manhattan, Motorolla scientist Marty Cooper made the first cell phone call. He called his competitor Joel Engel at Bell Labs to tell him he had lost the race to invent the cell. That first phone “was the size of a leg of lamb.”
Monday, April 1, 2013
Birthdays:Charlemagne, Giacomo Casanova, Hans Christian Andersen, Marvin Gaye, Emile Zola, Max Ernst, Buddy Ebsen, Sir Alec Guinness (Obi Wan Kenobi), Frederick Bartholdi, Emmy Lou Harris, Linda Hunt, Karl Castle. 1943- Disney short 'Private Pluto' the first Chip & Dale cartoon. 1974-While actor David Niven was speaking at the Academy Awards telecast a nude streaker ran past him on nationwide television. Mr. Niven, completely unflustered, dryly commented: "The only laugh that man will ever get is by stripping off his clothes and showing off his shortcomings. " 1974- at that same Oscar telecast, Francis Ford Coppola held up presenting the Best Picture Nomination to declare that a coming Revolution was coming in Digital Technology “that will make the Industrial Revolution seem like a small town try-out!” The audience was confused and annoyed at being delayed any longer to get to their parties. 1978-The TV show "Dallas" debuts. 1994-Disney chief executive Frank Wells is killed in a helicopter crash on a skiing trip. It’s been speculated that blowing snow off some high peaks caused a ice ball to be sucked into the copter’s air intake manifold. Clint Eastwood was supposed to be on that trip but couldn't make it. Billie Joel and Christie Brinkley had a similar scare with their helicopter on the same day. The death of the Disney CEO set in motion the events that would lead to Jeffrey Katzenberg forming Dreamworks and Michael Ovitz’s brief tenure as a mouseketeer and Michael Eisner’s eventual fall. In 1999 the Hollywood Reporter estimated that the little iceball cost the Walt Disney Company one billion dollars. 2004- Walt Disney Studio released Home on the Range.
Birthdays: Big Jim Fisk , Edmund Rostand, Lon Chaney, Sir William Harvey*, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Ali McGraw, Toshiro Mifune, , Debbie Reynolds is 82, Phil Neikro, Wallace Beery, Jane Powell, Bo Schembechler, Annette O’Toole, Barry Sonnenfeld, Rachel Maddow is 40 1488- Ludovico Buonarotti, after going through a lot of trouble to get his son in the wool and draper’s guild, gives up hope that the boy would ever be anything other than an artist. He reluctantly takes him to be an apprentice to fresco painter Domenico Ghirlandaio. Michelangelo's career begins. 1923- Developers S.H. Woodruff and Canadian William Whitley start advertising lots for sale in Hollywoodland, beneath his his giant new Hollywoodland sign. The sign originally was covered with lightbulbs. It collapsed and was repaired in 1939, the 'land' part never restored. The Hollywood Sign was made over again in 1978. 1944- Tex Avery's "Screwball Squirrel" 1949- Zsa Zsa Gabor married George Sanders. 1976- Two college dropouts, Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs started a company named Apple Computers. A third partner Ron Wayne sold his shares to Jobs & Woz before they filed papers of incorporation. He didn’t want to get stuck with the bill when they failed. He sold his third for $800. In 2011 Apple surpassed Microsoft as the worlds richest company. 1984- Motown star Marvin Gaye was shot to death by his own father in an argument over plans for the singer's 45th birthday party the next day. 1995- Chasen's restaurant closed. Former actor Frederick Chasen opened his exclusive Beverly Hills Restaurant in 1936. James Stewart and Mickey Rooney were regulars. During the filming of Cleopatra (1963) Elizabeth Taylor had Chasen's chili flown out to her in Rome. Walt Disney met Leopold Stokowski over dinner at Chasens and conceived the film Fantasia, Orson Welles and Joe Mankiewicz got into a fistfight over the script outline of Citizen Kane there, Bogart, Bacall and John Huston discussed how to fight the Hollywood Blacklist there. Today there is a booth from Chasens preserved in the Reagan Presidential Library. 1996- Animation World Network, Toontown’s virtual trade magazine, started up. www.AWN.com 2004- G-Mail invented.