Thursday, April 26, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 26, 2018


Birthdays: Marcus Aurelius, French 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 85, Eyvind Earle, Giancarlo Esposito is 62, Kevin James, Amos Otis, Joan Chen is 56, Jimmy Giuffre, Rocker Duane Eddy- 78, Jet Li- born Li Lian jie is 55

1928- Los Angeles City Hall dedicated.  


1937- GUERNICA- In Spain the Stuka bombers of the German Condor Legion, Nazi subcontractors for Franco, bombed an innocent basque village killing 5,000 and provoking an international outcry and a painting by Picasso. Attacking at the height of the market time for three hours the planes bombed and strafed the helpless civilians with no military target in sight. Combatants in WWI tried to avoid harming civilians, but this act and the simultaneous Japanese attacks in China signaled a new tactic, sowing terror by treating civilians as targets. 

1941-An organ is played for the first time at a baseball game in Chicago.

1965- Fred Smith, a student at Yale, got his economics paper back with a "c'" and a note stating the idea he espoused was impractical. The idea was an overnight air-freight service which he founded six years later as Federal Express.

1977- In New York City, Studio 54, the mecca of 70’s Disco culture opened.

1986- Arnold Schwarzenegger aka Conan the Republican, married Maria Shriver, the niece of John F. Kennedy. 

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.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 25, 2018


Birthdays: Roman emperor Otho -32AD, English King Edward II-1284, Oliver Cromwell-1599, Giuseppe Marconi, Edward R. Murrow, Ella Fitzgerald, Al Pacino is 78,  Jason Lee is 48, Meadowlark Lemon, Talia Shire, Paul Mazursky, Hank Azaria is 54, Rene Zellwellger is 49,  Ron Clements is 65

1719- The Life and Strange Adventures of Robinson Crusoeby Daniel Defoe first published.


1850- Paul Julius Baron de Reuter used 40 carrier pigeons to carry stock market prices between Paris and London. He went on to form Reuters, the first international news agency. 

1886- In the Gilded Age, most American workers worked a 10-12 hour day, seven days a week. This day The New York Times attacked the outcry among American union workers for an 8-hour workday as: A Seditious, riotous notion that would collapse the American economy and lead to sloth, drunkenness and debauchery. It was probably the idea 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.

1926- Giacomo Puccini's last opera Turnadot premiered in Milan. Puccini died before it's completion so students had to finish the work based on the masters notes. Conductor Arturo Toscanini put down his baton at the beginning of the Third Act, turned to the audience and said:" Here is where the Maestro died." He then left the podium and let someone else finish it. 

1956- Elvis Presley’s song Heartbreak Hotel goes to #1 in the pop charts.

1970- Policeman Frank Serpico’s story of rampant corruption in the NYPD explodes on the pages of the New York Times. The practices of decades of graft are exposed by the Knapp Commission and the police commissioner and several captains resign in disgrace.
Serpico’s story was made into a film starring Al Pacino.


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."

1981- Dixie, the worlds oldest living mouse died at age 6  1/2.

1996- "Bring in Da Noise, Bring in Da Funk" opened on Broadway.


Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April24, 2018


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 76, Cedric the Entertainer is 55, Shirley McLaine is 84

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.

1944- Film Noir classic film Double Indemnity premiered.


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, 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.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 23, 2018


Birthdays: William Shakespeare, James Buchanan, Sergei Prokoviev, J.M.W. Turner, Vladimir Nabokov, Senator Stephen Douglas the Little Giant, Shirley Temple, Roy Orbison, Halston, Sandra Dee, Valerie Bertinelli, Lee Majors is 77, Judy Davis, Simone Simon, Michael Sporn, Tony Esposito, Michael Moore is 64, Herve Villechaise

1616- After a night out partying with Ben Johnson, John Draydon and other old buddies from Ye Old Mermaid Tavern, William Shakespeare caught a fever and died on his fifty third birthday.


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 in 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.


1951- Comedian Lenny Bruce was arrested for a stunt where he dressed as a priest and solicited funds in a leper colony.

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!
  

2005- The first You-Tube video was uploaded- Me at the Zoo.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 22, 2018


Birthdays: Queen Isabella I of Castille, Dr. Robert Oppenheimer, Immanuel Kant, Madame De Stael, Alexander Kerensky, Aaron Spelling, Eddie Albert, Glen Cambell, Betty Page, Marilyn Chambers, Charlie Mingus, Peter Frampton, John Waters is 72, Jack Nicholson is 81

1741- Georg Frederich Handel dipped his quill into ink and began to write the Messiah. 

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."

1964- The opening day of the New York World’s Fair. It was in Flushing Meadow Park in Queens, built on the site of the 1939 Worlds Fair.

1970- The first Earth Day. The idea was started by Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin "The objective was to get a nationwide demonstration of concern for the environment so large that it would shake the political establishment out of its lethargy," Senator Nelson said, "and, finally, force this issue permanently onto the national political agenda."


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!"



Saturday, April 21, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 21, 2018


Birthdays: Edwin S. Porter, Charlotte Bronte', John Muir, Freiderich Froebel the inventor of kindergarten-1782, Anthony Quinn, Patti Lupone, Iggy Pop, Charles Grodin, Anna Magnani, Andie MacDowell is 60, Tony Danza, Elaine May, James McAvoy is 39, Rob Riggle is 48, Queen Elizabeth II is 92



1910- Mark Twain died of congenital heart failure at 75 as Haley's comet appeared overhead. He once wrote: " When arriving in Heaven feel free to ask all the questions you want of Saint Peter. You may ask for his autograph, however don’t take any Kodak photos or bring your dog. Admittance to Heaven is based on favor, not merit, else the dog would be allowed to go in and you kept out."

1921- The Coconut Grove nightclub opened in Hollywood.

1938- Disney animator Bill Tytla married artists model Adrienne LeClerc.

1964- British TV viewers double their pleasure- BBC 2 goes on the air. Their first program is Play School.

1973- The pop song “Tie a Yellow Ribbon ‘Round the Old Oak Tree” became a number one hit on the US, Canadian and UK pop charts. The song spawned the custom of a yellow ribbon as a symbol of remembering a soldier overseas, which reached its’ peak during the Iran Hostage Crisis. That in turn spawned variations like the red AIDS ribbon, the pink breast cancer ribbon, and so on.

1986- Reporter Geraldo Rivera hosted a live primetime TV special in an old Chicago Hotel that was once a headquarters for gangster Al Capone. After wasting two hours speculating on discovering buried treasure or mobster skeletons, they broke into a room sealed since 1932. All they found were some old dusty bottles, trash and a few dollar bills.

1997-The first Intergalactic Funeral.  The ashes of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry and 1960's LSD guru Dr. Timothy Leary were shot into space.


Friday, April 20, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 20, 2018


Birthdays: Harold Lloyd, Juan Miro', Adolf Hitler, Tito Puente, Nina Foch, Gregory Ratoff, Ryan O'Neal, Daniel Day Lewis, Jessica Lange, Luther Vandross, Don Mattingly, Rosalyn Summers, Crispin Glover, Betty-Lou Gerson the voice of Cruella da Vil, George Takei, Carmen Electra is 43, Andy Serkis is 55,  Bob Kurtz

1912- A slightly built London theater manager and failed author named Abraham “Bram” Stoker died. He managed the theater that famed stage actor Henry King performed. If anyone noticed him, it was because he worked with Henry King. Stokers seven books and several plays made little money in his time. But a decade later a play adapted from one of his novels entitled Dracula made him world famous.

1925-The Warner Bros. Moving Picture Company merged with Vitagraph, and began 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 dedicated RCA pavilion at World's Fair in New York City. First U.S. news event filmed on television. Sarnoff predicted that one day everyone would have a television in their home!

1940- RCA labs demonstrated the first Electron Microscope. 

1970- San Rafael Cal, started a tradition of smoking marijuana en masse at 4:20, the police code for a drug bust. The Grateful 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”. 
 ============================
Yesterday’s Question: Roman Hibernia is modern Ireland. Roman Gaul became France. What is the modern name for Lusitania?

Answer: Portugal.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 19, 2018

Quiz- Roman Hibernia is modern Ireland. Roman Gaul became France. What is the modern name for Lusitania?

Yesterday’s Quiz answered below:Paris has the Seine. New York has the Hudson. What river runs through Berlin?

--------------------------------------------------------------
History for 4/19/2018
Birthdays: Paulo Verronese, Elliot Ness, Jayne Mansfield, Dudley Moore, Paloma Picasso, Scooby doo creator Iwao Takamoto, Ashley Judd, James Franco is 41, Kate Hudson is 40, Tim Curry is 73


1824- Poet Lord Byron died of fever and uremic poisoning at Missolonghi Greece.

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, GUIs and laser printer. 



1987- The first Simpsons short aired today. "Good Night Simpsons" MG01 was on the 3rd episode of The Tracey Ullman Show, airing Sunday, 4/19/87 at 9pm. Animated by Wes ArcherBill Kopp, and David Silverman.



Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 18, 2018


Birthdays: Lucretzia Borgia, Franz Von Suppe’, Haley Mills, Leopold Stokowski, Miklos Rosza, Herb Sorell, Wahoo Sam Crawford, Conan O’Brien is 55, James Woods is 71, Eric Roberts, Rick Moranis is 66, Maria Bello is 51, David Tennant is 47, Disney animator Phil Young is 78

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!” 
 San Franciscans dusted themselves off and rebuilt. By 1913 they were doing well enough to host the World’s Fair. A little ditty of the time said: 
           "They say God spanked the town, for being rather frisky.
                  Then why'd He knocked the churches down, yet leave up
                          Hotaling's Whiskey ?"

1914-. The full feature length movie premiered in Turin, Italy. "Cabiria" directed by Giovane Patrone. It was believed to be the first full length movie ever until the discovery of a 1912 version of Quo Vadis.  D.W. Griffith’s 1915 classic the Birth of a Nation popularized the format for feature films.

1955- Scientist Albert Einstein died in Princeton New Jersey at 75. As he fell in and out of a coma his last words were in German. Since no one around his bed could understand German, we don't know what his last words were. 

1958- A U.S. court ruled that poet Ezra Pound no longer had to stay at a Washington D.C. mental hospital for the criminally insane. The Idaho born Pound had moved to Italy in the 1920s and became an ardent supporter of Fascists like Mussolini. He felt artists thrived under strongman rule. Gertrude Stein couldn’t stand him because of his open Anti-Semitism. When World War II ended he was arrested for treason and sent to this mental hospital. After his release after 13 years incarceration he returned to Italy and died in 1972. 

1958- At the Los Angeles Coliseum in front of a crowd of 78,672, the Dodgers play their first game in the City of Angels, defeating the new San Francisco Giants, 6-5.     

1994- Disney’s first theatrical musical based on an animated film, Beauty and the Beast A New Musical, opened on Broadway.

2000- Earlier that spring some of the worlds biggest internet companies –e-Bay, Amazon and CNN were paralyzed by a virus spreading hacker. Today the FBI made an arrest. The culprit was a Canadian High School student who went by the domain name of Mafia Boy. He received probation and a promise to only use his computer for schoolwork for two years.


Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 17, 2018


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 67, Gregor Piatigorsky, Don Kirschner, William Holden, Harry Reasoner, Boomer Eiseason, Sean Bean is 59, Victoria Beckham, Martha Sigall, Ron Miller, Jennifer Garner is 46, Rooney Mara is 33.


1924- Metro Pictures, Goldwyn and Mayer Films all merged to become Metro-Goldwyn- Mayer. By 1940 MGM was the largest studio in Hollywood.

1929- Baseball great Babe Ruth married Ziegfeld Follies dancer Marge Colson in a morning ceremony. Then he drove to Yankee Stadium and hit a home run.


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 Schlesinger. 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. 

1987- Comedian Dick Shawn the Hippy-Hitler in the original Mel Brooks film the Producers- was doing his one-man show The Second Funniest Man in the World at UC San Diego. After one particularly funny punch line he fell over dead from a heart attack. The audience roared for several more minutes at him lying there face down because they thought it was part of the act.


2011- The first season of Game of Thronespremiered in the U.S. on HBO. 

Monday, April 16, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 16, 2018


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, Disney artist Victor Haboush, Martin Lawrence is 53, John Cryer is 53, Ellen Barkin is 64, Claire Foy, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI is 91.

1260- Chartres Cathedral completed. Art history teachers rejoice!

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 exactly 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. 

1983- Disney Channel debuted.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Animation fun facts for April 15, 2018


Birthdays: Leonardo DaVinci, composer Domenico Gabrieli, Nanak I the guru of the Sikh religion 1469, Charles Wilson Peale, Theodore Rousseau, Henry James, Bessie Smith, Heinrich Klee, Kim Il Sung, Claudia Cardinale is 79, Roy Clark, Emma Thompson is 58, Hans Conried, Olympic runner Evelyn Ashford, Alice Braga is 34, Seth Rogen is 36, Emma Watson is 28

Happy St. Matthews Day, the patron saint of tax-collectors.

1729- The Saint Matthew’s Passion oratorio by Johann Sebastian Bach was first sung at the Thomaskirche in Leipzig.

1850- The townships of Yerba Buena- Good Herbs, incorporated as the City of San Francisco.

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 chauffeured limousines.

1934- Chief of production Darryl F. 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 turned into a giant.

1935- Kodachrome film developed. First as motion picture film, later for home photography.


1940- Franklin Roosevelt covertly gave permission for American volunteer pilots to join General Claire Chennault in fighting the Japanese invasion of China as part of a freelance foreign corps serving in the Chinese air force. The Flying Tigers are born. The famous toothy grimace painted on their planes was created by a Walt Disney artist.

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.”

1962-AUNTIE EM, AUNTIE EM! actress Clara Blandick, 80, the Auntie Em of the Wizard of Oz, took an overdose of sleeping pills and tied a plastic bag around her head. She left out on a table her resume and press clippings so the newspapers would get her obituary right. 

1964- Walt Disney sent attorney Robert Foster to Orlando Florida to quietly start buying up land for a planned new Disneyland Park.

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.


Saturday, April 14, 2018

Animation Fun Fact for April /14/2018

\
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, Kenneth Mars, Anthony Michael Hall, Steve Martin is 67, Sarah Michelle Geller is 40, Adrien Brody is 44. Japanese animator Katsuhiro Otomo

1828- The first edition of Noah Webster’s Dictionary published. In the 70.000 entries Webster made it a political point to separate American English from the King’s English, and substituted Spanish roots for words in the place of Norman French roots. This is when “Colour” became “Color”, Theatre became Theater, and Checque became Check.

1871- Canada set it’s currency in dollars, cents and mills.

1883- Leopold Delibes’ opera Lakme premiered in Paris. 


1956- In Redwood City, Cal. Charles Ginsburg, Ray Dolby and Charles Anderson demonstrated the first videotape recording machine. They were going then for a mere $75,000 each.

1960- The musical Bye Bye Birdieopened 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.
            


2008- Ollie Johnston, the last animator of Walt Disney’s original Nine Old Men, passed away at age 96.


Friday, April 13, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 13, 2018


Birthdays: St. Thomas Becket, Thomas Jefferson, Frederick 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, Animator Glen Keane is 64



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. 

1953- A British ex-intelligence officer turned newspaperman named Ian Fleming was bored with his life. He resolved to write a novel about his ideal of the ultimate spy. Looking for a suitably bland name, his favorite book on birdwatching was written by someone named James Bond. "It struck me that this brief, unromantic, Anglo-Saxon and yet very masculine name was just what I needed.” His wife thought the finished story was too vulgar. This day, the first Bond novel, Casino Royale, came out and was an instant hit.

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 McDaniel as Best Supporting Actress for Gone With the Wind in 1939. Best actress was not won until Halle Berry in 2002.

1967- Columbia Picture’s bizarre satire of Ian Flemings Casino Royalepremiered. Several directors, John Huston, Orson Welles, Ursula Andress, Peter Sellers, Woody Allen, George Raft, and David Niven. Richard Williams opening titles, and Dusty Springfield ‘s song “The Look of Love.” 


Thursday, April 12, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 12, 2018


Birthdays: Henry Clay, Lily Pons, Lionel Hampton, Herbie Hancock, Monserrat Caballe', Ann Miller, Tiny Tim, Shannon Dougherty, Andy Garcia is 62, Claire Danes is 39, David Letterman is 71


1709- In London the first issue of the Tattler published. “All accounts of gallantry, pleasure, poetry, foreign and domestick news you will have from Saint James Coffeehouse.”

1796- George and Martha Washington sit for painter Gilbert Stuart. Stuart noted that the General was a singularly uncooperative model. He tried small talk about his famous battles but that made GW even more annoyed. Washington much preferred a discussion on how to raise turnips to reliving his military career. 

1911- Cartoonist Winsor McCay opened his vaudeville act with his "Little Nemo" animated short. 

1954- "ROCK AROUND THE CLOCK' recorded by Bill Haley and the Comets- arguably the first true Rock & Roll hit.

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. Many felt it should have been built in Barcelona. The first Disneyland in California drew 100,00 on opening day alone. Disneyland Paris finally paid for itself in 1997.

1995- To celebrate David Letterman’s 49tbirthday, actress Drew Barrymore climbed up on his desk and flashed her breasts. For once, the bucktoothed talkshow host was speechless.


Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 11, 2018


Birthdays: Roman Emperor Septimius Severus, Frederick the Warlike of Saxony-1370, Ethel Kennedy is 90, Joel Grey is 86, Louise Lasser, Mason Reese, Oleg Cassini, Cameron Mitchell. Norman McClaren, Bill Irwin, John Milius, Jennifer Esposito

1506- Pope Julius II laid the corner stone for the new Saint Peter’s Basilica. It was completed in 1626.

1914- George Bernard Shaw’s play Pygmalion premiered at the Haymarket in London.

1933- the Bauhaus directed by Mies Van Der Rohe was closed down by the Nazis.

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. 

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 an LA  jail for assault, and his Oscar wound up in the bushes.




Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Animation Funn Facts for April 10, 2018


Birthdays: Josef Pulitzer, Lew Wallace, George Arliss, Omar Sharif, Harry Morgan, Max Von Sydow is 88, Ken Griffey Sr,  Claire Booth Luce, Chuck Connors, John Madden, Don Meredith, Paul Theroux, David Halberstram, Steven Segal is 67, Orlando Jones, Mandy Moore is 34, Haley Joel Osment is 30

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.”

1985- Madonna began her first tour, the Virgin Tour.

1992- Bill & Sue Kroyer’s Ferngully the Last Rainforestpremiered.

1992-   Raunchy comedian Sam Kinison was killed in a head on collision with a truck on the road to Laughlin Nevada. Ironically, the comedian who had glorified the wild sex, drugs and rock& roll lifestyle was sober at the time, and the other driver was drunk. 

 



Monday, April 9, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 9, 2018


Birthdays: Tamerlane, Lenin, Paul Robeson, Jean Paul Belmondo, Ward Bond, Seve  Balesteros, Carl Perkins, Michael Learned, Tom Lehrer, Paula Poundstone, Cynthia Nixon, Hugh Hefner, Dennis Quaid is 64, Elle Fanning is 20

1747- Famed British actor David Garrick signed a contract to take over the management of London’s Drury Lane Theatre.

1914- The first all color film” The World, The Flesh and the Devil” premiered in London.

1942- Black opera star Marian Anderson gives her concert at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington to an audience of 75,000. She was snubbed from giving a recital at the Daughters of the American Revolution Hall which caused a furious Eleanor Roosevelt to resign from the DAR and arrange this concert.

1943- A U.S. Patents court concluded that Gulgielmo Marconi had used several of Nichola Tesla’s patents to create Wireless Broadcasting. So in effect, Tesla was the real inventor of radio broadcasting. Vindication came too late. Marconi died a rich Nobel-Prize winner, and Tesla died alone and penniless.

1948- Variety columnist Lee 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 as Sinatra passed Mortimer in front of Ciro's restaurant on Sunset Blvd. he heard Mortimer call him a “dirty Dago”. Frank went at Mortimer and punched his lights out.

1953- The first issue of the T.V. Guide.

1966- actress Sophia Loren married producer Carlo Ponti, with whom she had been living with for a decade but not allowed to marry because Catholics did not allow divorce from their previous spouses.

1974- Ray Kroc the founder of MacDonalds Restaurants was the owner of the San Diego Padres baseball team. After yet another sorry performance, losing 8-0, Kroc stormed over to the broadcast booth, grabbed the mike and out shouted ” You Guys Stink!” Despite this morale booster, the Padres eventually did win championship pennants and get to the World Series.

2005- Prince Charles wed Lady Camilla Parker-Bowles, his mistress of thirty years. They were not allowed to marry in Saint George’s Chapel in Windsor, the Queen avoided the ceremony and his father didn’t feel like interrupting his trip to Germany; and because of  a delay to respect Pope John Paul II’s funeral, all the commemorative cups and dishes have the wrong date on them. Among the thirty invited guests, were Mrs. Bowles divorced husband.

2008- Stuntman Rupert MacDonald built a full size Viking ship out of 15 million popsicle sticks. 


Sunday, April 8, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 8, 2018


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, Catfish Hunter, Jacques Brel, Darlene Gillespie, Julian Lennon, Carmen McCrae, Shecky Green, Douglas Trumbull, Robin Wright is 52, Patricia Arquette


1876- Amilicare Ponchielli’s opera La Gioconda debuted. The ballet portion is famous as the Dance of the Hours.

1911-Vitagraph released Winsor McCay's short cartoon "Little Nemo" theatrically.


1949- A three year old girl named Kathy Fiscus fell into a well in the little LA suburb of San Marino California. After a concerted effort by authorities to rescue her, she was found dead. What makes this sad incident memorable, was it was the first time a news event was followed by television cameras and reported live as it happened.



1973- 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.

1986- Actor Clint Eastwood was elected mayor of the town of Carmel, California.


1994- Grunge rocker Kurt Kobain’s body was discovered by a security system electrician three days after he blew his own head off with a shotgun.

1995- Disney’s A Goofy Movie premiered.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Animation Fun Facts for April 7, 2018


Birthdays St. Francis Xavier, William Wordsworth, Mongo Santamaria, Walter Winchell, David Frost, Percy Faith, Daniel Ellsberg, Jerry Brown, Alan Pakula, Billie Holiday, Ravi Shankar, Irene Castle, Wayne Rogers, Stan Winston, James Garner, Olkirk Christenson-the inventor of Lego toys, Francis Ford Coppola is 79, Russell Crowe is 54, Jacky Chan is 64


1891- Showman P.T. Barnum died of old age. The last words of the man who invented kiddie matinees, the Greatest Show on Earth and coined the word “Jumbo” were "How were the box office receipts today?"

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 Gance’s 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 in many modern movies.

1933- Hitler's regime passed the Professional Civil Service Restoration Act, which ordered Jews and other political undesirables fired from all government posts including university professorships,  museum curators, and arts funded grants. The exile of Germany's intellectual elite began- Bertholdt Brecht, Billy Wilder, George Gropius, Thomas and Heinrich Mann, George Grosz, Michael Curtiz, Lazslo Moholy-Nagy, Max Reinhardt and Otto Klemperer -Colonel Klink's dad. 

1939-"The Ugly Duckling" the last Disney Silly Symphony short cartoon.

1945-The SUICIDE MISSION OF THE BATTLESHIP YAMATO- The Japanese superbattleship had just enough fuel to sail into the midst of the American Navy around Okinawa, then it was to sell itself dearly. It never made it though. Because of Ultra, the cracking of the Japanese code, the Americans knew it was coming. The Yamato was bombed and torpedoed by swarms of U.S. planes and went to the bottom before it ever got within range of other surface ships. Later the Yamato had a second career as the star of a kids anime series.

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 only x-rated film ever to do so.
Disney’s It’s Tough to be a Bird” won best animated short.


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.

20 Years Ago 1998- Lead singer for the punk band 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.