Thursday, December 31, 2015

Anim fun facts for Dec 31, 2015 New Years Eve

Birthdays: Henri Matisse, General George C. Marshall, Odetta (real name Holmes Felicious Gordon), Simon Weisenthal, Virginia Davis, Pola Negri, Jules Styne, Sarah Miles, Donna Summer, Patti Smith, Elizabeth Arden, Tim Matheson, John Denver, Dianne Von Furstenberg, Ben Kingsley-born Khrishna Banji is 72, Anthony Hopkins is 78, Val Kilmer is 56, Gong Li is 50, Psy is 37

1881- Los Angeles becomes the first U.S. city to be lit entirely by electricity.

1923-24-BBC overseas radio service first broadcast the Chimes of Big Ben around the world.

1940-41- Avant Garde artists John Sloan and Marcel Duchamp break into the Washington Square Arch in and declare Greenwich Village the Republic of New Bohemia. Like coool, daddy.

1941- A Warner Bros memo dated this day from producer Hal Wallis office announced that the movie to be made from a play by Murray Bennett called “Everybody Goes to Rick’s” has been renamed “Casablanca”. This was to capitalize on an already popular film title “Algiers” with Charles Boyer “come with me to ze Casbah” etc.. Humphrey Bogart got the lead after George Raft first turned it down. Bogie told a friend about his new project: “It’s just some more sh*t like Algiers.”

1943- Four hundred policemen are called out to control frenzied crowds of bobbysoxers as Frank Sinatra played the Paramount Theater in Times Square. OOHH FRANKIE !!

1946- The first Pismo Beach Clam Festival.

1947- Roy Rogers married Dale Evans.

1958-59- As Fidel Castro's guerrillas closed in on Havana, dictator Fulgensio Batista slipped out of a New Year's Party and boarded a plane for Miami, all arranged by the CIA. Fredo, ya broke my heart…

1962- Romanoffs closed. One of the premier hot spots on the Sunset Strip, it was the preferred hangout of Humphrey Bogart, who liked to play chess in the afternoon with Nick Romanoff when he was between films.

1985- Singer Ricky Nelson died when his band's converted old DC-9 airplane crashed near DeKalb, Texas. Nelson it was said had been living on a steady diet of cheeseburgers and Snicker's bars.

1995- The last Calvin and Hobbes comic strip by Bill Waterston

1999-2000 - The Y2K MANIA. While the world prepared to celebrate the new century and the Third Millenium the American media whipped up paranoia over a theory that the change from 1999-2000 would cause most computers to crash. Planes would fall out of the sky, nuclear missiles would launch themselves and marauders would rule the streets like something out of Mad Max. The US Government spent $65 million to prepare for the crisis.  

But at midnight absolutely nothing of the kind happened. Even older, less sophisticated computers in Russia and China were unaffected, and everything ran normal. Meanwhile, many of the US public stayed home and watched the rest of the world have fun on television.

              HAVE A HAPPY NEW YEAR 2016!
                                                                           -  TOM SITO

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Dec 30, 2015

Birthdays: Rudyard Kipling, Gen. Hideki Tojo, W. Eugene Smith, Luther Burbank, Anna Magnani, Bo Diddley, Sir Carol Reed, Sandy Koufax, Solomon Guggenheim, Jeanette Nolan, Jack Lord, Franco Harris, Joseph Bologna, Fred Ward is 73, Tracey Ullman, Russ Tamblyn, Tiger Woods is 40, Heidi Fleiss, Paul Stookey of Peter, Paul & Mary, Douglas Engelbart the inventor of the computer mouse, Lebron James is 31, Eliza Dushku is 35

1689- The opera Dido & Aeneas by Henry Purcell premiered in London.

1816- Poet Percy Bysshe Shelley married Mary Wollenstonecraft. Mary wrote Frankenstein two years later.

1941- “I Vant to be Alone..” Film Star Greta Garbo announced she was retiring from motion pictures and all public appearances. She made her disappearing act complete and was only seen fleeting on the streets of New York until her death in the 1990s.

1963- T.V. game show "Let's Make a Deal" with Monty Hall premieres.

1988- the Pixar short Tin Toy released. The first CG short to win an Oscar. Until this win, Steve Jobs was resisting his animation team making films. He was focused on getting color graphics onto home computers. The first draft of Toy Story was built around the characters of Tin Toy.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Dec 29, 2015

Birthdays: Roman Emperor Flavius Titus, Pablo Casals, Madame de Pompadour, Andrew Johnson, Charles Goodyear, Gelsey Kirkland, Dina Merrill, Tom Bradley, Mary Tyler Moore is 79, Jon Voight is 77, Ray Nitschke, Viveca Lindfors, Ed Flanders, Ted Danson is 68, Marianne Faithful, Paula Poundstone, Jude Law is 43, Patricia Clarkson, Animator Duncan Marjoribanks

1913- Cecil B.DeMille telegraphed his partners back in New York:” Flagstaff no good for our purpose. Have proceeded to California. Want authority to rent a barn in a place called Hollywood for $75 a month.” His partner Sam Goldwyn cabled back: “ Rent barn on month to month basis. Do not make long commitment.” DeMille began shooting the Squaw Man, the first Hollywood Film.

1916-James Joyce’s novel “the Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man” published.

1939- Scientist William Shockley first noted in his laboratory notebook that it should be possible to replace vacuum tubes with something called a semi-conductor. Eight years later he led the team that developed the transistor.

1941- Disney animator Bill Tytla tells Time Magazine in an interview about creating "Dumbo": "I don't know a damn thing about elephants!"

1964 – To create the first pilot of the TV series Star Trek, the original filming model of the U.S.S. Enterprise was delivered by model maker Rick Datin, Jr, based on the design created by Star Trek production artist Walter “Matt” Jefferies.  The “miniature” was 11 feet long!

1965- First day shooting on Stanley Kubrick’s film 2001: a Space Odyssey. It was an indoor set at Elstree Studios in England, and the first setup was the inspection of the excavation of the Monolith in the moon crater Tycho.

1968- Animator Bill Tytla died at age 64, from complications of a stroke.

1972- LIFE Magazine ended publication.

1974- John Lennon signed the last papers dissolving the Beatles while staying at the Polynesian Village in Disneyworld Fla. The band broke up in 1970, but it’s taken this long to unravel all of their vast financial holdings. The other three members had already signed.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Animation fun facts for Dec 28, 2015

 birthdays: Woodrow Wilson, Robert Sessions, Earl "Fatha" Hines, Hildegarde Neff, Edgar Winter, Stan “The Man” Lee is 93,  Martin Branner the creator of Winnie Winkle, Johnny Otis, Martin Milner (1-Adam-12), Lew Ayres, Lou Jacobi, Terri Garber, Denzel Washington is 61, Maggie Smith is 81, Sienna Miller is 34, Rick Farmiloe is 59

1895- THE BIRTHDAY OF CINEMA- In Paris at the Grande Cafe des Capucines the Lumiere brothers combined Edison's kinetoscope using George Eastman’s roll film with a magic lantern projector and showed a motion picture to an audience in a theater. Back in the U.S. Thomas Edison thought the idea of projecting film in a theater was foolish and would never catch on. They called their device a Cinematograph, hence the word Cinema is born. The screening included dancers and people leaving a factory but the biggest reaction out of the audience was from shots of waves crashing on a rocky beach. The audience in the front row jumped for fear of getting wet.

1897- Edmond Rostands famous play CYRANO DE BERGERAC premiered in Paris. There really lived a poet-duelist in the 1640’s named Cyrano de Bergerac-Servigan but little was known about him. Rostand created the hopelessly lovesick big nosed hero who helps another man romance his Roxanne.

1944- ON THE TOWN, a musical written by Betty Comden & Adolf Green and young composer Leonard Bernstein premiered in NY.

1968- The Beatles White Album goes to number one on the pop charts.

1983- Dennis Wilson was the original drummer of the Beach Boys, but he had a pretty bad drug habit. He was once friendly with the Manson Family.
Taking time off from rehab for Christmas he and some friends sat on a yacht doing more drugs and booze near Marquesas Pier.  Wilson recalled this very spot was where after breaking up with his first wife he threw her mementos overboard. He wondered if he could get them back and started “pearl-diving “i.e.-diving holding your breath without any scuba equipment. But being stoned after several dives, he miscalculated the depth he had gone to and drowned.
Dennis Wilson was 37. Of all the Beach Boys he was the only one who actually liked to surf.

1987- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles premiered.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Dec 27, 2015

Birthdays: Johannes Kepler, Linwood Dunn, Marlene Dietrich, Louis Pasteur, Oscar Levant, Sidney Greenstreet, Anna Russell, Dr. William Masters of Masters & Johnson, Leslie Maguire, John Amos, Tovah Feldshuh, Heather O’Rourke, Cokie Roberts, Bollywood star Salman Khan is 50, Gerard Depardieu is 67

1887- Beginning of the Sherlock Holmes story the Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle.

1903- The Barbershop Quartet favorite “Sweet Adeline” sung for the first time. It was written in praise of opera star Adelina Patti.

1904- PETER PAN, OR, THE BOY WHO WOULDN’T GROW UP, a play by James M. Barrie, opened at the Duke of York Theatre in London. Barrie reserved seats in the opening night performance for orphaned children who laughed and cheered all night. Michael Llewelyn Davies, the little boy Barrie befriended who was the basis for Pan, used to say:” I am not Peter Pan. Mr Barrie is.” He committed suicide in 1960 at age 75. James Barrie once said to H.G. Wells:” It’s all right and good to write books, but can you wiggle your ears?”

1927- Broadway musical "ShowBoat" debuts at the Ziegfeld theater. Based on a story by Edna Ferber, the music was written by Jerome Kern & Oscar Hammerstein. The play made a star out of a tall black baritone named Paul Robeson.” Ol’ Man River..”

1935- Radio City Music Hall opened. The Art Deco masterpiece was for many years the largest indoor theater in the world, seating over 6,000.

1940- Al Jolson and Ruby Keeler announced their separation.

1943- The movie The Song of Bernadette premiered.

1947- The "Howdy-Doody Show” debuted on NBC. Buffalo Bob, Howdy and Clarabell the Clown, also known as the Puppet Playhouse.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Dec 26, 2015

Birthdays: Emperor Frederick II Hohenstaufen, Mao zse Tung, Charles Babbage, Admiral Dewey, Richard Widmark, Steve Allen, Henry Miller, Carlton Fisk, Chris Chambliss, Alan King, Phil Spector, Fred Schepsi, Jared Leto is 44

1924- Baby Frances Gumm first appeared on a stage at 2 1/2 years old. Grown up she would change her name to Judy Garland.

1926- Young artist Al Hirschfeld had made his first caricature for the Broadway Stage. A drawing of actor Sasha Guitry. A friend took it to The New York Tribune and sold it. He figured here's a nifty way to make a living, so soon he was selling to all the papers including the New York Times. 

He will keep doing caricatures of Broadway greats into the millennium and became a legend himself. In the American Theater, a Hirschfeld caricature of you meant you had arrived and were a real star. At age 94 he remarried and drew the cast of Ally McBeal for TV Guide. In 2003 he died just shy of age 100, drawing to the end.

1938- Young playwright Thomas Williams moved from Saint Louis to New Orleans and changed his name to Tennessee Williams.

1939- Walt Disney Animation moves from Hyperion to the new Burbank Studio lot. The buildings are designed like hospital wards, so in case he hits economic trouble, Disney could sell them to the planned St. Joseph's Hospital across the street. Animator Ward Kimball said it was the first time he worked in a studio where all the furniture matched. The old Hyperion Studio was bulldozed in 1966, the year of Walt Disney’s death.

1941- Goofy cartoon, the Art of Self Defense, premiered.

1944- Tennessee Williams play the Glass Menagerie premiered in Chicago.

1973- The horror film The Exorcist starring Linda Blair premiered. Merry Christmas! Have some pea soup!

Friday, December 25, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Dec 25, 2015

Birthdays: Clara Barton, Humphrey Bogart, Cab Calloway, Helena Rubinstein, Rod Serling, Charles Pathe’, Jimmie Buffet, Quentin Crisp, Mike Mazurki, Conrad Hilton- Paris’ granddad, Anwar El Sadat. Larry Csonka, Burne Hogarth, Ishmail Merchant, Maurice Utrillo, Kid Ory, Barbara Mandrell, Dame Rebecca West, Clark Clifford, Annie Lennox is 62, animator Howard Beckerman, Karl Rove, Sissie Spacek is 66, CCH Pounder is 63

1929- The Fox Atlanta Theater opened on Peachtree St. An Arabian Nights-type fantasy in part financed by the Shriners so they could use it for their meetings.

1931-The first BBC World Service Network broadcast. An address by King George V called "Around the Empire".

1937-NBC Symphony Orchestra under the baton of the legendary Arturo Toscanini premieres with its first radio broadcast.

1946- Comedian W.C. Fields died of alcoholism at 67.  While in his hospital bed someone saw him reading a Bible. They said:" W.C., what are you doing with that? " Fields replied:" Looking for loopholes!"

1955- Chuck Jone's 'One Froggy Evening' premiered. Director Steven Spielberg called it the "Citizen Kane of Cartoons." If you wonder why you never heard the old time ditty 'The Michigan Rag' anywhere else but here, was because Chuck Jones & Mike Maltese wrote it specifically for the cartoon.

1957- Disney film Old Yeller premiered.

1962- The film of the novel To Kill a Mockingbird premiered with Gregory Peck and Robert Duval.

1963- Walt Disney’s The Sword in the Stone released. First animated feature directed by Wolfgang,” Woolie” Reitherman.

1977- Charlie Chaplin died quietly in his sleep at Vevey, Switzerland. He was 86.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Anim Fun Facts for Dec 24, 2015

Birthdays:, Roman Emperor Servius Galba, English King John Lackland, Revolutionary Patriot Dr Benjamin Rush, Kit Carson, Howard Hughes, Ava Gardner, Michael Curtiz, I.F. Stone, Robert Joffrey of the Joffrey Ballet, Mean Joe Green, John Matusak, Susan Lucci, Nicholas Meyer, Ricky Martin,early Pixar animator Glen McQueen, Ryan Seacrest

1818-the song Silent Night first sung at the Church of Saint Nicholas in Obersdorf, Austria. It’s lyrics were written by the minister named Josef Mohr and music by a teacher named Franz Gruber. Their church could not afford an organ, so this first singing of Silent Night was accompanied on a guitar.

1922- The BBC presented it’s first radio play:" The truth about Father Christmas."

1925- The London Evening News published a story “ In which we are introduced to Winnie the Pooh, and some Bees.” By A.A. Milne. The first book comes out the following year.

1937- Disney short Lonesome Ghosts premiered.

1951- Gina Carlo Menotti’s opera "Amal and the Night Visitors" premiered on NBC TV..

1952- First draft script completed on the MGM film Terror Planet, changed to “ Forbidden Planet.”

1964- First day shooting on the “Cage” a pilot for a new TV show called Star Trek. Jeffrey Hunter was the first captain, later replaced by William Shatner when Hunter’s wife advised him to skip the series. She was worried he’d be typecast.

1966- Local New York City TV station WPIX premiered The Yule Log. They ran a loop of 6 minutes of a closeup of a log burning in a fireplace in Gracie Mansion. The loop ran from 11:00PM to 1:00AM with Christmas carols playing. It made the TV the symbolic family hearth. New Yorkers loved their kitschy Yule Log tradition, and when WPIX tried to replace it in 1989 hundreds of complaints forced them to put it back. The log was taped once more in 1970, and that’s been the film ever since.

1990- Tom Cruise married Nicole Kidman.

1997- 62 year old Film director Woody Allen married 27 year old Soon-Yi Previn, the adopted daughter of his former lover Mia Farrow. When asked to explain himself the director said: " The Heart wants what it Wants.."

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Dec 23, 2015

Birthdays; Joseph Smith -Founder of Mormonism, Paul Hornung, Ruth Roman, Otto Soglow -cartoonist of 'the Little King', Frank Morgan (the Wizard of Oz actor) Jose Greco, Elizabeth Hartmann, Harry Guardino, Claudio Scimone, Vincent Sardi of Sardi’s restaurant in NY, Harry Shearer is 72, Bob Barker, Frederick Forrest is 79, Japanese Emperor Akihito is 82, France’s former First Lady Carla Bruni is 47

1893- Humperdinck's opera "Hansel und Gretel" debuts in Weimar Germany.

1894- Claude DeBussey’s “Afternoon of a Faun” premiered in Paris.

1912- The Max Sennett short comedy “Hoffmeyer’s Release” premiered, the first comedy featuring the Keystone Cops.

1913- Young Italian Rudolph Valentino arrived in America to seek his fortune. He was so poor that after a year he sent his parents a photo of himself in a borrowed tuxedo to allay their fears. He worked as a nightclub dancer and gigolo until becoming a Hollywood film star in 1921.

1930- Young actress Betty Davis signed her first contract with Universal Studio.

1935- Walt Disney sent a detailed memo to art teacher Don Graham outlining his plans for retraining his animators to do realistic feature films.

1935-1959, This was the traditional day for Republic Pictures to fire all their employees and hire them back after New Years so they wouldn't have to pay them holiday pay. Republic billed itself on it’s business cards as The Friendly Studio.

1947- Two Bell laboratory scientists invent the Transistor. Nobody was quite sure what to do with the little thing until Texas Instruments invented the portable radio in 1954.

1973- Soap Opera “the Young and The Restless” premiered.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Dec 22, 2015

Birthdays: Roman Emperor Diocletian 245AD, Josef Stalin- real name Jozef Djugashvili, James Oglethorpe the founder of the State of Georgia, Jean Racine, Giacomo Puccini, Connie Mack, J. Arthur Rank, Ladybird Johnson, Deems Taylor, Jean Michel Basquiat, Barbara Billingsley, Peggy Ashcroft, Emil Sitka, Gene Rayburn, Hector Elizondo, Diane Sawyer, Robin Gibb & Maurice Gibb of the Bee Gees, Ralph Fiennes is 53.

1808-DA-DA-DA- DUMMMM- Beethoven premiered his 5th Symphony.

1940- Nathaniel West, novelist author of Day of the Locust and Miss Lonelyhearts, was killed in a car crash in L.A.

1951- Yves Montand married Simone Signoret.

1964- In Chicago, Comedian Lenny Bruce was sentenced to four months in prison on obscenity charges. When the arresting officer read aloud his jokes, the jury laughed out loud. Lenny complained about the policeman’s delivery. After Lenny Bruce no one has ever again been convicted in the U.S. for telling jokes.

2000- The Cohen Bros. Depression Era comedy Oh Brother Where Art Thou? Opened.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Animation Fun Facts for Dec 21, 2015

Birthdays: Benjamin Disraeli, Josh Gibson- the Home Run King of the Negro Baseball Leagues, Pat Weaver-TV exec who created the Today Show and father of Sigourney Weaver, Frank Zappa, Dr. Kurt Waldheim, Florence Griffith Joyner, Chris Evert, Phil Roman, Jane Fonda is 78, Paul Winchell born Pinkus Wilchinski, Keifer Sutherland is 49, Samuel L. Jackson is 67, Ray Romano is 58, Jane Kaszmarek, Judy Delphy is 46, Jeffrey Katzenberg is 65

1914- The premiere of the first feature length film comedy- Tilly’s Punctured Romance, starring Marie Dressler, Mabel Normand and a young Charlie Chaplin.

1925- Sergei Eisenstein’s cinematic masterpiece Battleship Potemkin premiered in Moscow. The films pioneering use of montage and allegorical imagery intercut inspired a generation of filmmakers.

1933- Twentieth Century Fox signed 5 year old Shirley Temple to a seven year contract.

1937-Walt Disney's " Snow White and the Seven Dwarves" had its grand premiere at the Cathay Circle Theater. The first feature length American cartoon, it became the box office champ of 1938, earning 4 times more than any other film that year.

1940- Writer F. Scott Fitzgerald (44) died of a heart attack at Hollywood columnist Sheila Graham's house.  She had just left the house to buy him some candy.
His last words were 'Hershey bars will be fine..."

1944- Walt Disney’s The Three Caballeros premiered in Mexico City.

1971- Richard William's animated TV special "A Christmas Carol" with Alastair Sim reprising his Scrooge.

1979- Disney’s Sci-Fi film The Black Hole opened in theaters.

1982- Thom Riley, one of the stars of the TV cop show ChiPS was busted for driving stoned on Quaaludes.

2012- The Walt Disney Company spent $4.06 billion to buy Lucasfilm, ILM and the Star Wars rights. George Lucas retired to do philanthropic pursuits.

2089- According to Ridley Scott, today the good ship Prometheus lands on the Original Planet.