Birthdays: Diego Velasquez, Pierre Corneille. Alexandre Pushkin, Nathan Hale, John Trumbull, Thomas Mann, The Dalai Lama, Klaus Tennestedt, Bjorn Borg, Richard Crane, Dr. Karl Braun, Walter Chrysler, Isaiah Berlin, Aram Kharachaturian, Jason Issacs, Sandra Bernhard is 62, Paul Giamatti is 50, Aaron Sorkin is 56
1929- Luis Bunuel and Salvador Dali’ surrealist masterpiece Un Chien Andalou ( The Andalusian Dog) at the Teatre des Ursulines in Paris. All the modernist artists were present like Picasso, Andre Breton and Cocteau. Bunuel filled his pockets with stones in case the crowd hated the film and he needed to defend himself, but it was warmly received.
1939- Playright Eugene O’Neill had hit a dry spell of no writing and dread of impending Parkinsons disease. This day he got the inspiration to sketch out outlines for two plays- The Iceman Cometh, and Long Days Journey into Night.
1941- Actor George Raft wrote a memo to studio head Jack Warner reminding him of his contractual commitment to send Raft only good quality scripts. The latest he got: " The Maltese Falcon" he thought was “a lousy substandard idea that has no chance." Humphrey Bogart did the film instead.
1944- D-DAY, the NORMANDY INVASION- General Dwight Eisenhower launched 6,000 ships, 14,000 planes and 156,000 troops on the shores of Nazi occupied France with the order: "Okay. Let's go."
In the assault were voiceover actor Paul Frees, Disney key assistant Dale Oliver, Marvel cartoonist Jack Kirby, and Disney/Warner development artist Victor Haboush. Peanuts creator Charles Schulz was in the second wave to Utah Beach. Max Fleischer animator Willy Bowsky was killed in the hedgerows by tank fire. (photo: Victor Haboush 1924-2009, 101 Dalmatians, The Iron Giant)
1949-Comic strip character Joe Palooka gets married to Ann Howe.
1949-BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING- George Orwell's book about technological tyranny -1984 was first published. Orwell's working title was "The Last Free Man", but the publisher thought it too depressing to sell. So Orwell picked the date 1984, who's only significance was that it was the year he was writing 1948- reversed
1955 - Bill Haley & Comets, "Rock Around the Clock" hits #1.
1972 - David Bowie released "Rise & Fall of Ziggy Stardust"
1976- The Glendale Galleria shopping mall in Glendale Cal. opened.
1984- In Moscow, 29 year old mathematics Professor Alexey Pajitnov invented the game Tetris.
1991 - NBC announced Jay Leno would replace retiring Johnny Carson, winning out over David Letterman. Letterman moved to CBS.