Monday, August 31, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Aug 31, 2015

Birthdays: Caligula 12AD*, Commodus 161AD**, Amilcare Ponchielli, Eldridge Cleaver, Buddy Hackett, James Coburn, Itshak Perleman is 70, Van Morrison, Arthur Godfrey, Richard Baseheart, Rocky Marciano. Alan J. Lerner, Hugh Harman,, Maria Montressori (of the Montressori Method of education), William Saroyan, Richard Gere is 66, Chris Tucker is 43.

1887- Thomas Edison patented the plans for a Kinetoscope, his original version of Motion Pictures using George Eastmans new celluloid roll film. Most of the actual work was done by Canadian scientist W.K.L. Dickson. He drove himself sick designing, building and improving the device as well as the camera and studio, but Edison took all the credit. Edison wrote Edweard Muybridge at the time that he doubted the Kinetoscope would have much commercial value beyond the science lab.

1920 -Detroit radio station is 1st to broadcast a news program on the air.

1935- Disney cartoon Plutos’ Judgement Day.

1938- Walt Disney puts ten thousand down to buy 51 acres on Buena Vista Street in Burbank. He will build his modern studio there.

1941 –The Great Gildersleeve, a spin-off of Fibber McGee & Molly debuts on NBC radio.  The voice of Gildersleeve later narrated the UPA cartoon Gerald McBoing Boing.

1946- Looney Toon short 'Walky Talky Hawky' the first Foghorn Leghorn. The character was based on a Fred Allen radio character Senator Clayton Langhorn, that mocked bombastic Southern conservative congressmen.

1948- Disney's 'Melody Time' premiered.

1948- Movie star Robert Mitchum was busted for smoking pot with a blonde in the Hollywood Hills. This would have normally smoked his career but the new postwar outlaw, noir attitude was in vogue. So bad-boy Mitchum emerged from county jail more popular than ever. When asked what he thought of being in jail, he said it's not much different than being free....but you meet a better clientele of people IN jail.

2001- The NY Stock Exchange tries to avoid a Recession and bolster growth, by getting Michael Jackson and Jerry Lewis to ceremonially open trading sessions. Didn’t work.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Aug 30, 2015

Birthdays: Mary Shelley, Jacques Louis David, Huey Long, Fred MacMurray, Raymond Massey, Ted Williams, John Blondell, Timothy Bottoms, Jean-Claude Killy, Shirley Booth, John Landis, Tug McGraw, R. Crumb is 72, Lewis Black is 67, Cameron Diaz is 43

1935- “Top Hat” starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers premiered.

1936- First newspaper comic strip entirely devoted to Donald Duck.

1968- The first 7-11 store opened in Palmdale California. Have a Slurpee !

1975- Ralph Bakshi's film "Coonskin". Bad boy Bakshi's portrayal of African-American urban violence was deemed so offensive that it caused the first riot ever at the Museum of Modern Art, and died at the boxoffice. The film was retitled on video "Streetfight".
 When Ralph resurfaced he turned his attention to Sword & Fantasy films.

1980- Willie Nelson released his hit  “On the Road Again.”

1993-The David Letterman Show premiered on CBS. Letterman was wooed away from NBC for $42 million bucks.

2012- At the Republican Presidential convention, venerable 80 year old filmmaker Clint Eastwood made a fool out of himself by having a rambling dialogue with an empty chair. He was supposed to introduce candidate Mitt Romney’s acceptance speech, but his bizarre performance upstaged anything Romney said. 

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Aug 29, 2015

History for 8/29/2015
Birthdays: King James II Stuart, John Locke, Oliver Wendel Holmes Sr., Jean Dominique Ingres, Charlie Parker, Preston Sturges, Ingrid Bergman, William Friedkin is 80, Dinah Washington, George Montgomery, Slobodan Milosevic, Robin Leach, Michael Jackson, Joel Schumacher, choreographer Mark Morris, Charles Kettering inventor of the automobile ignition, Joyce Clyde Hall the founder of Hallmark greeting cards, Richard Attenborough, Donald O’Connor, Elliot Gould is 76, Rebecca DeMornay, John McCain is 79.

1953- Warner's "Cat Tails for Two" introduced Speedy Gonzales.

1955- Mamie Van Doren married Ray Anthony.

1958 - George Harrison joins the Quarrymen -Lennon-McCartney and Sutcliffe. The later rename themselves the Beatles.

1967- Final Episode of the television series "The Fugitive". Dr. Richard Kimble catches the one-armed-man and clears his name.

1976 - Anissa Jones, the child actress who played Buffy on the television show Family Affair), died of a drug overdose at age 18.
2002- Peep-O-Rama, Times Square’s last remaining peep show, closed.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Aug 28, 2015

Birthdays: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Leo Tolstoy, George Villiers the Duke of Buckingham- minister of James I, O'Flagherty, Donald O'Connor, Charles Boyer, Karl Boehm, Bruno Bettleheim, Ferdinand Horvath, Ben Gazzara, Jack "King" Kirby, Janet Evans, Ron 'Louisiana Lightning' Guidry, Nancy Kulp, Daniel Stern, Shania Twain, Charles Solomon, Jack Black is 46, Rita Coolidge is 54.

1922- The first broadcast commercial on radio.  It was for a real estate firm Queensboro Realty lasting ten minutes and cost $100 dollars. The firm selling suburban homes in Queens NY immediately did $100,000 worth of business. The business world took note of this new method of advertising.

1934-Writer Upton Sinclair was nominated for Governor of California on the Democratic ticket by over half a million votes. This shocked the California power-elite because Sinclair was a radical whose grass roots organization EPIC (End Poverty in California) advocated socialist solutions to the Depression. Even FDR kept his distance from Sinclair.
  Powerful forces enlisted Louis B. Mayer, Irving Thalberg and other Hollywood conservatives to ensure Sinclair's defeat by creating the first modern negative media campaign. This included phony newsreels of actors dressed as hobos saying how they're going to California to sponge off the taxpayers. Walt Disney's lawyer, Gunther Lessing, demanded Ward Kimball take the "Sinclair for Governor" sign off his car window.

  Governor Frank Merriam who earlier that year had ordered troops to shoot down striking San Francisco longshoremen and their families won re-election.

1963- Dr. Martin Luther King gave his "I Have a Dream" speech in front of the Lincoln Memorial at the climax of the first ' Poor People's March 'on Washington”. Organizer A. Phillip Randolph conceived a poor people’s march taking weeks not unlike the Bonus Marchers of 1929. The sympathetic John F. Kennedy administration prevailed upon them to keep it to one day to reduce the chance of violence and maximize media exposure.  They had planned for 100,000 but they got 400,000. Movie stars like Sidney Poitier, Marlon Brando, James Garner, and Charlton Heston attended.

1990- Computer pioneer Sandy Lerner was fired from the company she founded- Cisco Systems.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Aug 27, 2015

Birthdays: Man Ray, Martha Ray, LBJ ( Lyndon Baines Johnson), Hegel, C.S. Forester, Hannibal Hamlin- Abe Lincolns first term vice president, Barbara Bach, Theodore Dreiser, Lady Antonia Fraser, Tommy Sands, Tuesday Weld is 72, Mangesuthu Buthelezi, Paul Rubens-aka Pee Wee Herman is 63

1910- The first radio message sent from an airplane.

1912- Edgar Rice Burroughs published Tarzan of the Apes.

1917- Straight Shooting, the first film directed by John Ford released. 

1930- Lon Chaney Sr. died of throat cancer. During filming of a remake of the Unholy Three a wind machine blew an artificial gypsum snowflake into Chaney's mouth - it caused an irritation that became a tumor.

1950- NBC and General Foods abruptly canceled the hit television show “the Aldrich Family” when a pamphlet called Red Channels accused Jean Muir, one of the show’s stars, of being a communist.

1953- The film Roman Holiday introduced a new young actress from Holland named Audrey Hepburn.

1964- The movie version of Mary Poppins premiered.

1967- Beatles manager Brian Epstein overdosed on sleeping pills.

1968- Former master animator Bill Tytla's request to return to Disney was turned down. The artist who animated Grumpy the Dwarf, Dumbo and the Devil on Bald Mountain even offered to do a free "trial animation test" to show he still had it. Disney exec W.H. Anderson wrote him:" We really have only enough animation for our present staff."
Tytla died later that year.

1990- Guitar great Stevie Ray Vaughan was killed in a helicopter crash outside Alpine Valley Wisconsin, after an "All Stars of the Blues" show.  Stevie Ray took the last remaining seat on the helicopter, after Eric Clapton got off, claiming he'd rather take a limo back to Chicago, which was about an hour away.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Aug 26, 2015

 Birthdays:  Sir Robert Walpole the first British Prime Minister, Mother Theresa, Albert the Prince Consort, John Wilkes Booth, Guilliame Appollinaire who coined the term Surrealism, Christopher Isherwood, McCauley Culkin is 34, Geraldine Ferrarro, Dr. Lee DeForrest, Ben Bradlee, Barbet Schroeder, Branford Marsalis, Chris Pine is 35,  Melissa McCarthy is 45

1498- Michelangelo gets a job. The big Florentine stonecutter was commissioned by Pope Alexander VI Borgia to carve the Pieta, Mary lamenting over the body of Jesus.

1576- Great artist Titian died at age 99. He outlived all the artists of the Renaissance, worked every day of his life and might have gone on, had he not caught the plague.

1846- W.A. Bartlet became first American mayor of Yerba Buena, in 1850 renamed San Francisco.

1868- First practical typewriter patented by Christopher Scholes. The Remington Company who were famous for making firearms took up the typewriter and mass produced it. In 1874 Mark Twain admitted to a friend that he preferred writing on it.

1918- 17 year old Walt Disney dropped out of high school and faked his parents signature in order to enlist to fight in World War I.  Assigned to the ambulance corps, he arrived in Europe as the war was ending.

1946 - George Orwell published "Animal Farm". Orwell said he conceived the idea for the novel while watching out his window a small boy driving a huge draft horse. The horse could have easily crushed the boy had it the free will but instead patiently endured the boys taunts and flicks with a small switch.

1946- First day of shooting on Jean Cocteau’s film Belle et le Bete, Beauty & the Beast.

1958- First day of shooting on the Alfred Hitchcock film North By Northwest. Conceived as a story that ended in a chase across the stone faces of Mt. Rushmore. The original title of Ernst Lehman’s script was The Man Who Hung From Lincoln’s Nose.

1967 – The Beatles, Mick Jagger & Marianne Faithful met the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

1980- Director Tex Avery died after collapsing in the parking lot of Hanna-Barbera. Two weeks before he was asked by a friend why he was working in Hanna & Barbera.
Tex laughed:" Hey, Don’t you know? this is where all the elephants come to die!"

1997- Special effects house Boss Studios, closed.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

animation fun facts for Aug 25, 2015

Birthdays:  King Ludwig II the Mad of Bavaria, Leonard Bernstein, Walt Kelly, Bret Hart, Lola Montez (flamenco dancing mistress of Ludwig I, King of Bavaria), Alan Pinkerton, Elvis Costello is 61, Clara Bow, Ruby Keeler, Monty Hall, Van Johnson, Willis Reed, Frederick Forsythe, Wayne Shorter, Billy Ray Cyrus, Dr. Bruno Bettleheim, Rolly Fingers, Gene Simmons, Anne Archer, Tim Burton is 57, Sean Connery is 85, Claudia Schiffer is 44

1830- This is the day of the legendary race between the locomotive the Tom Thumb and a horse and buggy outside of Baltimore. The Tom Thumb weighing in at about a ton and developing a whopping one-horse power. The boiler driven fan broke down near the end, so the horse won. Still, the train’s performance was so impressive that the first U.S. railroad, the Baltimore & Ohio, shifted from horse drawn to steam railroad.

1970- A young British singer named Elton John did his first US tour, opening at the Troubadour in LA.

1980- The premiere of the Broadway musical version of the classic movie 42nd Street. In a moment of Broadway melodrama producer David Merrick came out on stage and startled the cast and audience by announcing that the director of the play Gower Champion had died that very day. 42nd Street went on to be a smash hit. The play itself is about a Broadway director who works himself to death creating a hit musical.

1989- The Voyager 2 probe left Neptune and shot off into deep space after completing it reconnaissance of the outer planets of our solar system. It discovered the rings of Jupiter and Neptune, the additional moons of these planets, and the volcanoes of the Jovian moon Io, and the ice of Europa. Today you have ten times more computing power in your laptop than in the Voyager spacecraft, yet all these years later it continues to transmit signals back to Earth. Voyager is currently in the Heliosheath, outer border of our solar system.

1991- At the Emmy ceremony, comic Gilbert Gottfried (AFLACK duck) upset the audience by a flood of masturbation jokes about Pee Wee Herman. Fox Network apologized the next day.

2001-Beautiful 22 year old R&B singer Alleiya was killed, when her overloaded charter plane crashed on the island of Abaco in the Bahamas.