Monday, September 30, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 30, 2019


Birthdays: William Wrigley the Chewing Gum king 1868, Truman Capote, Eli Weisel, Lester Maddox, Buddy Rich, David Oistrach, Deborah Kerr, Angie Dickinson is 87, Marylin McCoo, Len Cariou, Johnny Mathis, Rula Lenska, Eric Stolz, Monica Bellucci is 55, Jenna Elfman is 48, Marion Cotillard is 44, Al Leong (Al KaBong) is 67

1791- Mozart's opera "Die Zauberflotte, The Magic Flute" premiered at Emanuel Schiknader's theater in Vienna.

1868- Louisa May Alcott’s novel Little Women first published in installments.

1919- The Fleischer Brother's first Out of the Inkwell cartoon featuring Koko the Clown. Koko was rotoscoped- meaning traced from live action like Motion Capture does today. Dave Fleischer put on the clown suit and was filmed by his brother Max.

1928- Walt Disney and his crew re-recorded the final soundtrack and music for the first Mickey Mouse short, Steamboat Willie. Walt was unhappy with the first version of the track, and pawned his car for the money to pay for this second session.

1930- Death Valley Days Show premiered on radio, sponsored by Twenty Mule Team Borax powder. When it moved to television in the 50’s the host was Ronald Reagan.

1935- George Gershwin's opera Porgy and Bess premiered at the Colonial Theater in Boston. It flopped originally but after some rewrites it became a major hit.

1947- The first World Series Game on Television- New York Yankees beat the Brooklyn Dodgers 5-3. Gillette and Ford paid $65,000 to sponsor the entire series.

1952- This Is Cinerama, showcasing the widescreen film process, opened in theaters.

1955- James Dean (24) was killed when his Porsche 550 Spyder crashed head on into a pickup truck driven by college student Donald Turnipseed on Highway 41 outside of Paso Robles, California. Dean was driving 85 mph at dusk without his headlights on, and two hours earlier had been given a ticket for speeding. 


1960- Hanna & Barbera's "The Flintstones" debuted. For six seasons in prime time the inhabitants of 301 Cobblestone Lane, Bedrock, was one of the most successful TV series ever. Originally going to be named the Flagstones, then Gladstones, before Flintstones. Ed Benedicts' designs with Alan Reed as the voice of Fred, Jean Van Der Pyl the voice of Wilma, Mel Blanc doing Barney and Bea Benaderet doing Betty. 

1982- The TV comedy Cheers premiered. The Beacon Street Bar in Boston where everybody knows your name. It made stars of Ted Danson, Woody Harrelson, Kirstie Alley and Kelsey Grammar.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 29, 2019


Birthdays: Roman general Pompey Magnus, Miguel de Cervantes, Admiral Horatio Nelson, Rudolph Diesel (inventor of the engine), Enrico Fermi, Jerry Lee Lewis, Gene Autrey, Lech Walesa, Stanley Kramer, Bryant Gumbel, Greer Garson, Michelangelo Antonioni, Ian McShane, Anita Ekberg, Andrew Dice-Clay, cartoonist Russ Heath, Tom Sizemore, Emily Lloyd is 50, Silvio Berlusconi, Stephanie Miller is 58

1930-Ninety year old writer George Bernard Shaw turned down the offer of a Peerage.

1930- First day of shooting on the Tod Browning horror classic Dracula. Hungarian actor and morphine addict Bela Lugosi played the lead role he had already made famous on stage. Lugosi was identified with the character Dracula for the rest of his life and when he died he was buried in the Dracula cape.

1933- The movie A Bill of Divorcement introduced the star Katherine Hepburn.

1953- The television show “Make Room for Daddy” premiered, making a star out of big nosed nightclub entertainer Danny Thomas. The Lebanese Thomas had tried to break into films with no luck.  He burst into tears after Columbia studio chief Harry Cohn suggested he get a nose job and forget about it. Danny Thomas at one time was the richest man in Beverly Hills. 

1959- Hanna Barbera's "Quick Draw McGraw" TV show. Baba Louie and El Kabong!

1961- Russian ballet star Rudolph Nureyev, acclaimed as the greatest dancer of his age, defected to the west in Paris and was granted asylum. 

1967- The cult TV series The Prisoner premiered. 

1969- The TV series Love American Style premiered.

1969- Country singer Merle Haggard released the song “I’m Proud to be an Oakie from Muskogee”. It was a huge hit on the country charts, but more than that, it was a conservative declaration of cultural war of against the urban-hippy, rock & roll counterculture that dominated American media at the time. It crystalized rural anger into an already polarized American public. 

1975- The legendary R&B singer Jackie Wilson, collapsed of a heart attack while performing on stage for Dick Clark’s ‘Good Ol’ Rock and Roll Revue’ at the Latin Casino in Cherry Hill, N.J. He lingered in an out of a coma for 8 years, dying in 1984. He was only 49. All the time he was comatose, Dick Clark covered all his medical bills, and kept it a secret.  This wasn’t revealed until Clark himself died in 2012.

1976- At his birthday party musician Jerry Lee Lewis accidentally shot his bass player Norman Owens in the chest with his 357 magnum. He said he was using the gun to try and open a soft drink bottle and it accidentally went off. Owens survived and sued Lewis.


1996- The first Nintendo 64 bit game system, The NES, debuted in the US. It sold 500,000 the first day. 




Saturday, September 28, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 28, 2019


 Birthdays: Michel Caravaggio, Georges Clemenceau, Al Kapp, William Paley, Max Schmelling, Bridgette Bardot is 85, Frederic Engels, Marcello Mastroianni, Moon Unit Zappa, Ed Sullivan, Sylvia Kristel, John Sayles, Arnold Stang, J.T. Walsh, Seymour Cray, Janeane Garofalo is 55, Mira Sorvino is 52, Hillary Duff is 32, Naomi Watts is 51


1928- For his birthday, William Paley, son of a cigar manufacturer, was given control of a little radio company called the Columbia Broadcasting System. He turned CBS into a corporate broadcasting giant, and threw his support behind developing television and long playing records.

1961- Richard Chamberlain made a name for himself by playing the handsome Dr. Kildare on TV, Raymond Massey co-starred.

1961-The Hazel TV show with Shirley Booth premiered.

1967- Speed Racer premiered in the U.S.


1976- Stevie Wonder released his album Songs in the Key of Life.

1994- Michael Eisner cancelled plans for a theme park called Disney’s America in Northern Virginia. 


1996- The Ambiguously Gay Duo premiered on the Dana Carvey Show. Created by SNL writer Robert Smigel. J.J. Sedelmier created the animation, Steve Carrell and Stephen Colbert did the voices.

Friday, September 27, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 27, 2019


 Birthdays: King Stefan Bathory of Poland, Thomas Nast, Arthur Penn, Mike Schmidt,
 Meatloaf, William Conrad, Dick Schapp, Samuel Adams, George Cruikshank, Jayne Meadows, Wilford Brimley, Shaun Cassidy, Greg Morris, Amanda Detmer, Avril Lavigne is 35, Gwynneth Paltrow is 47

100 Years Ago- 1919- Entrepreneur Frank Toulet partnered with Oregon restaurant manager Joe Musso to open a new restaurant in the heart of Hollywood. First called Franks Café, later Musso & Frank, it became an important hangout for the movie industry. It is still in the business today, still the same menu, and you can still see Hollywood types having power meetings there where Chaplin and Barbara Stanwyck once sat. 

1935-13 year old singer Frances Gumm of the singing Gumm Sisters signed an exclusive contract with MGM Pictures. Louis B. Mayer changed Frances name to Judy Garland.

1937- J R R Tolkiens’ The Hobbit first appeared in bookshops.

1938- Bob Hope first sang “Thanks For the Memory” on his NBC radio show. It became a hit in his movie “The Big Broadcast of 1938.”

1947- Disney’s film Fun and Fancy Free, featuring Mickey and the Beanstalk.

1954- The Tonight Show premiered. Steve Allen was the first host.


1961- Hanna Barbera's "Top Cat" show premiered. Do you remember the words to the theme song..?  "Top Cat, the most effectual- Top Cat, who's intellectual: Close friends get to call him T.C., Providing it's with dignity. Top Cat, the indisputable leader of the gang... He's the Boss he's a pip, he's the championship, He's the most tip-top, Top Cat !"

1962- Rachel Carson’s book Silent Spring was publishedThe best seller first brought to the public’s eye how indiscriminate use of chemical pesticides, particularly DDT, was damaging the environment and killing off wildlife.


1989- The Japanese corporate giant Sony purchased Columbia Pictures.

2003- Hours after the season’s final concert, in the dead the night, the historic bandshell at the Hollywood Bowl was demolished. After a long legal fight with preservationists, the historic 1929 structure designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, that Gershwin and Stokowski played in, was replaced with a new shell promising better acoustics. 

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 26, 2019


Birthdays: George Gershwin, T.S. Elliot, John Chapman (also known as Johnny Appleseed)-1774, Winsor McCay-1869, Theodore Gericault -1791, Olivia Newton-John, Cheryl Tiegs is 71, Marty Robbins, Linda Hamilton, Pope Paul VI, Jack Lalanne, Melissa Sue Andersen, Phillip Bosco, James Cavaziel, Surena Williams, Linda Hamilton is 63.

1835- Donizetti’s opera Lucia De Lammermoor premiered.

1887- Emile Berliner patented the gramophone, rejecting Thomas Edison's cylinder in favor of a flat disc record on a turntable.

1914- The Federal Trade Commission, or FTC created.

1926- Bullock's Wilshire department store opened. The Tea Room quickly became the in place for Hollywood Society to see and be seen in.

1937- "Queen of the Blues" Singer Bessie Smith died after a car accident in Mississippi. She crashed her Packard into a parked car. She was 43. One account said she died because she was refused treatment in a segregated hospital, but the truth was she was treated by a white doctor at the scene and sent to the nearest hospital, which was a black one. 


1941- Max Fleischer's "Superman" cartoon debuts. They were much more expensive that the usual short cartoons- $90,000 to the usual $40,000, but Paramount wanted them.

1955- Eddie Fisher married Debbie Reynolds.

1957- The musical West Side Story opened. The legend goes composer Leonard Bernstein was in the hospital to be operated on for a deviated septum. While recuperating he ran into lyricist Steven Sondheim, who was also recovering from an operation. To pass the time while convalescing they started talking about the idea of an updated Romeo and Juliet set to music in the slums. One early title was Gang Way!

1961- Nineteen year old folk singer Bob Dylan made his debut in a Greenwich Village coffee house Gerde’s Folk City.

1962- The Beverly Hillbillies debuts. The story goes that CBS mogul William Paley disliked farm-humor type shows, and this was premiered behind his back while he was on vacation.

1964- The premiere of Gilligan’s Island. The good ship Minnow was named for Newton  Minnow, the FCC Chairman who first called television “A Vast Wasteland”. 

1987- A market research group called Q-5 tried to use a bank of computers number-crunching demographic surveys to design the ultimate safe, wholesome, politically-correct children's show.  They came up with "The Little Clowns of Happytown"-. Of the 26 children's series in syndication it remained dead last in ratings, He-Man, Jem and G.I. Joe on top. The people have spoken.

1990- The Motion Picture Association changed the rating for the naughtiest movies from X to NC-17.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Animation Fun Facts Sept 25, 2019


Birthdays: William Faulkner, Jean Phillipe Rameau, Mark Rothko, Dmitri Shoshtakovich, Sergei Bondarchuk, Phil Rizzutto the Scooter, Bob MacAdoo, Heather Locklear is 57, Scotty Pippin, Christopher Reeve, Mark Hamill is 68, Glen Gould, Barbera Walters is 90, Red Smith, Aldo Ray, Will Smith is 51, Michael Douglas 75 & Catherine Zeta-Jones-51


1887- The first Sears Catalog published.

1888- The beginning of the Sherlock Holmes adventure The Hound of the Baskervilles.

1933- Young writer John Huston was driving drunk on Sunset Blvd when he struck and killed a pedestrian. His father Walter Huston was a top movie star, so to avoid scandal, MGM head Louis B. Mayer paid $46,000 to cover it up. John Huston went on to become a great Hollywood director and screenwriter.

1953- Alfred Hitchcock wrapped filming on his only 3D film, Dial M for Murder.


1961- Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color debuted on NBC TV today.


1965- The Beatles animated cartoon show premiered. 

1980- John Bonham of Led Zeppelin was found dead of alcohol poisoning.

1984- THE RUBBERHEADS STRIKE- Disneyland workers including the actors who stroll the park in big Mickey and Goofy heads went on strike.

Animation Fun Facts for Sept. 24, 2019


Birthdays: Roman Emperor Vitellius, Duke Albrecht Wallenstein, Chief Justice John Marshall, Francis Scott Key, F. Scott Fitzgerald, George Raft, Chief Joseph, Sheila MacCrae, Anthony Newley. Phil Hartman, Mean Joe Greene, Billy Bletcher the voice of Pegleg Pete, Pedro Almodovar is 69, Jim Henson.

1934- Stanford graduate Frank Thomas’s first day as a Walt Disney Animator. 

1936- Babe Ruth's last appearance in a baseball game. Yankees lost to Boston 5-0.

1936- Noel Coward's play 'Private Lives' opened.


1938- Bob Clampett's cartoon "Porky in Wackyland" ( Foo!)

1953-UPA's "Unicorn in the Garden" directed by Bill Hurtz, based on the cartoon style and story by James Thurber.

1953- The movie "The Robe" premiered, the first movie in CinemaScope. It's success was part of a wave of 'Sword & Sandal" epics and fostered many variations on wide screen processes- Superama,VistaVision, Dynarama, WarnerVision, TotalScope-etc. There had been earlier experiments with wide screen - Abel Gance's 1925 Napoleon, which used three 35mm images shown simultaneously, and Cimarron 1930, which was a true wide screen 70mm film starring a very young John Wayne. It was superseded by 1967 by the more advanced Panavision lens. For many years in Hollywood we called a wide screen picture a "Scope" picture.

1960- The "Howdy Doody Time" children's show ended after thirteen years. The show remains a pivotal memory in the minds of thousands of American baby-boomers who grew up in the fifties. As the last song and the last credits rolled by, just before the cameras switched off, Clarabell the mute clown goes up to the lens and in a haunting voice said; "Goodbye, Kids."

1968- T.V. show "60 Minutes" debuts. Mike Wallace was pared with Harry Reasoner. The show was originally aired Tuesday nights at 10PM and fared poorly in the ratings. When it was moved to Sundays at 7:00PM it became a weekly institution.

1977- The TV series “The Love Boat “debuted.

1988- The Godfather of Soul Music James Brown got a little crazy sometimes. This day he burst into his office complex in Georgia waving a pistol and shotgun and demanded everyone stop using his washroom! After locking the bathrooms, he led police on high speed chase through Georgia and South Carolina, only stopping when the cops shot out his tires. He rode the sparking rims till they collapsed. James Brown did 2 years for being under the influence of drugs. Hey!


Monday, September 23, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 23, 2019


Birthdays: Euripides-484BC, Victoria Woodhull, Walter Lippmann, Ray Charles, John Coltrane, Mickey Rooney, Julio Inglesias, Walter Pidgeon, Louise Nevelson, Jason Alexander, Mary Kay Place, Harry Connick Jr, Bruce Springsteen is 71, William McGuffey

1862- writer Leo Tolstoy married Sophie Behrs.
 

1889- The Nintendo Company started in Kyoto, They began by making hand-painted playing cards. In 1956 they transitioned to electronics, and invented Donkey-Kong, Gameboys, Pokemon and The Legend of Zelda.

1912- "Cohen Collects a Debt" Max Sennett's first film comedy featuring the Keystone Kops.

1937- Mickey Mouse cartoon The Brave Littler Tailor premiered.

1962- H& B's show The Jetsons premiered. It was the first ABC show to be presented in color.  

1964- Marc Chagalls’ paintings on the ceiling of the Paris Opera House unveiled.

1969- the film "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" premiered. Written by William Goldman and directed by George Roy Hill. It made fortunes for stars Paul Newman and Robert Redford, who later started and independent film festival called Sundance.

1984- Michael Eisner, Jeffrey Katzenberg and Frank Wells met the Disney Animation Dept. and were pitched storyboards for the film Basil of Baker Street, later called theGreat Mouse Detective. Up to now their thinking had been to close the animation department, and earn income from the licensing of the existing library. Roy Disney was instrumental in insisting the animation division remain. Eisner dictates memos to start the Disney television animation division, moribund for a decade.  

1994- Quentin Tarentino’s film Pulp Fiction premiered.

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 22, 2019


Birthdays: Anne of Cleves 1515- Henry VIII’s fourth wife. Bilbo Baggins and Frodo Baggins, Mafioso Joe Valachi, Michael Farraday, Meryl Streep is 69, John Houseman, Joanie Jett, Erich Von Stronheim, Tom Lasorda is 92, Paul Muni, Debbie Boone

1925- Lon Chaney’s horror classic film The Phantom of the Opera premiered.

1963- Davy Crockett at the Alamowith Fess Parker premiered on Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color TV show.


1964- The T.V. series The Man from U.N.C.L.E.premiered. “Open Channel D, Please..”

1964- Jerome Robbins’ “The Fiddler on the Roof“ opened on Broadway. Based on the story “Tevye and His Daughters” by Scholom Alecheim in 1894. In 1953 Jerome Robbins had named names to the HUAC committee to save his career. Now in Fiddler he had to use blacklisted actors like Zero Mostel and Beatrice Arthur who all despised him. 

1976- TV show Charlie’s Angels premiered. It made a star out of Farrah Fawcett.

1979- Hanna Barbera's Super Globetrotter's Show, featuring Multi-Man, Sphere Man, Gizmo-Man, Spaghetti-Man and Fluid-Man.

1984- Michael Eisner named CEO of the Walt Disney Corporation.

1994- FriendsTV show premiered.

1996- Seymour Cray, genius engineer who designed the most powerful supercomputers for the Control Data Corporation and Cray Computers, was in a bad car accident in Colorado Springs. He died two weeks later. He was 71.

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 21, 2019


Birthdays: Louis Joliet of the explorers Marquette & Joliet, Chuck Jones, Gustav Holst, H.G. Wells, Stephen King, Cecil Fielder, Rob Morrow, Jay Ward, Larry Hagman, Ricky Lake, Fanny Flagg, Ethan Coen of the Coen Brothers is 62, Leonard Cohen- not one of the Coen Brothers, Faith Hill, Jerry Bruckheimer, Nicole Richie is 39, Bill Murray is 69

1599- A Swiss tourist named Thomas Platter was visiting London and kept a diary of his trip. He wrote on this day he attended the play The Tragedie of Julius Caesar by Master William Shakespeare at the New Globe Theatre, and enjoyed it very much. This is the first written account of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar being performed, and Shakespeare himself was one of the actors. 

1897- The famous column by Frank Church in Joseph Pulitzer's New York World first appeared with the answer to 8 year old Virginia O’Hanlon’s question :  " ...and yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus..."

1915- The British archaeological treasure Stonehenge was sold at auction to a Mr Chubb, who promptly donated it to the British nation.

1917- The Gulf Between, the first film shot in Technicolor.

1944- An internal FBI memo concludes "Communist infiltration of the Hollywood Guilds and unions and the only organization that could stop them was the Motion Picture Alliance for the Preservation of American Ideals" a conservative publicity group that included Walt Disney, John Wayne and Gary Cooper.

1945- Disney short "Hockey Homicide" the first Sport-Goofy directed by Jack Kinney.


1948- the first Texaco Star Theater television show featuring a minor nightclub comedian named Milton Berle. Berle’s antics make him a major star and with Arthur Godfrey’s show help grow television from a scientific curiosity to the entertainment every household had to have. For ten years the U.S. public never missed Uncle Miltie on TV.

1957- The Perry Mason TV show with Raymond Burr premiered.

1970-first ABC Monday Night Football - Cleveland Browns defeated the NY Jets led
by Broadway Joe Namath, 24-21. Announcers- Keith Jackson, Howard Cosell and retired Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dandy Don Meredith. 

1970- 20 year old Bill Murray was at O’Hare Airport waiting for a plane, when he joking told another passenger he had two bombs in his suitcase. An airline attendant overheard him and called the police. They didn’t find any bombs, but they did find ten pounds of marijuana. He was charged a misdemeanor. Dropped out of college, His older brother later landed him a tryout at Chicago’s Second City Improv comedy club.

1985- “Money for Nothing” by Dire Straights hit #1 in the Billboard charts. Writer Mark Knopfler was inspired by a workman in an electronics store making fun of celebrities on MTV and wrote the conversation down. The CG animation done by London company Mainframe for the video was also groundbreaking.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 19, 2019


Birthdays: Roman Emperor Antoninus Pius, Saladin, Hungarian nationalist Leopold Kossuth, Brian Epstein, "Momma" Cass Elliot, Frank Tashlin, Dr. Ferry Porsche- inventor of the Porsche race car, Twiggy– real name Leslie Hornby, William Golding author of The Lord of the Flies, Paul Williams, Adam West, Frances Farmer, David McCallum, Duke Snyder, Jeremy Irons is 71, Jimmy Fallon is 45.

1926- THE BIG ONE- This day Miami Florida was destroyed by a huge hurricane. They didn’t have names then. The storm stopped a real estate boom in South Florida. Snowbirds from up north invested millions in land that turned out to be under water. The Marx Brothers poked fun at the craze in their stage comedy The Cocoanuts. As Groucho said:” Florida Folks. Sunshine, Sunshine, now let’s get the auction started before there is a tornado.”

1931- The Marx Brothers comedy “Monkey Business”premiered.

1936- Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald record “Indian Love Call”. When I’m Calling You, Oooh-ohhoohhh, Ohhhh-ohhh-oohhhhhhh”, etc.


1942-  Chuck Jones cartoon The Dover Boys released. 

1945- Little Shirley Temple, now all grown up, married actor John Agar, who she met on the set of John Ford's film Fort Apache. The RKO studio turned the marriage into a media circus by inviting 12,000 people. John Ford teased Agar mercilessly, calling him Mr. Temple. John and Shirley divorced five years later. Shirley Temple remarried and became a career diplomat, and John Agar went on to star in sci-fi flicks like 'Tarantula", The Brain from Planet Aurous".  Eventually he built his own theme dinosaur park by an Arkansas freeway, "John Agar's House of Kong'.

1961- This is the night Betty and Barney Hill claimed they were picked up by a flying saucer and experimented on. It is one of the more famous abduction stories because it was one of the first, and it holds up under hypnosis. Hey little guy, what are you planning to do with that anal probe?

1968 - "Funny Girl"opened in theaters, starring a young singer named Barbra Streisand.Hello Gorgeous!

1970- The Mary Tyler Moore TV Show premiered.


1995- Orville Reddenbacher 'the Popcorn king' died.


Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 18, 2019


Birthdays: Roman Emperor Marcus Ulpius Trajan 53AD, Dr. Samuel Johnson, Frankie Avalon, Greta Garbo, Claudette Colbert, Leon Foucault (Foucault's Pendulum), Jack Warden, Canadian PM John Diefenbaker, Eddie “Rochester”Anderson,  Rossano Brazzi, Joe Kubert, Debbie Fields founder of Mrs. Field's Cookies, Jada Pinkett-Smith, James Gandolfini, June Foray

1895- In Davenport Iowa, Daniel David Palmer performed the first chiropractic adjustment session. Crack!

1917-Writer Aldous Huxley got a job teaching at Eton. One of his students was Eric Blair, who would write under the name George Orwell.

1927-The Columbia Broadcasting System-CBS broadcast its first program, an opera called the King’s Henchman.  

1932-Frustrated movie actress Peggy Enwhistle jumped off the Hollywood Sign. In case you are curious she jumped off the “H”. She also didn’t hit the ground immediately but hit a cactus patch, dying slowly later in great pain.  Ironically in her mailbox that day was a script and a job offer. The role was of a woman who commits suicide.

1964- H&B’s Johnny Quest Show premiered.

1964- The Addams Family TV show premiered. Lurch, Thing and Uncle Fester. You Rang?

1965- I Dream of Genie debuted on television. Network Standards & Practices said Barbara Eden could wear the harem outfit so long as her belly-button didn’t show. At first the reviews were not good. The Variety TV critic said: “The only thing that stands out in this show is Barbera Edens cleavage.”

1970- Jimmy Hendrix (27) was found dead of drug and alcohol abuse. He had passed out and choked on his own vomit. Janis Joplin's reaction was"G-ddammit! He beat me to it !" Joplin herself died three weeks later.


1987- Disney’s TV show Ducktales premiered.



Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 17, 2019


Birthdays: Hank Williams, Spiro Agnew, Ken Kesey, Jerry Colonna, Roddy MacDowell, George Blanda, Wendy Carlos Williams, Elvira- real name Cassandra Peterson, Anne Bancroft, cartoonist Jeff MacNelly, John Ritter, Sir Frederick Ashton, Rita Rudner, animator Tim Walker, Baz Luhrmann is 57

1925- In Mexico City, a streetcar crashed into a schoolbus carrying 14 year old Frida Kahlo. It fractured her pelvis, when she had already been dealing with polio. The difficulty she suffered recovering had a great impact on her painting.

1932- Mickey Mouse short Mickey’s Whoopee Party, premiered.

1965- If you ever wondered what could be funny about being held in a Nazi prison camp you could watch the TV sitcom HOGANS HEROES, which debuted this day. Commandant Colonel Klink was acted by Werner Klemperer, whose father was the famous orchestra conductor Otto Klemperer. They had to flee Germany because they were Jewish. Sargent Schulz and the Frenchman LeBeau were also played by actors who survived the Holocaust- John Banner and Robert Clary. 

1971- RCA gave up and pulled out of the retail computer market.

1972- Filmation’s The Groovie Ghoulies" debuts.

1975- Psychotherapist Lucile Yaney opened one of LA’s most unusual restaurants- the Inn of the Seventh Ray in Topanga Canyon. Built on the site of a country house 1920’s evangelist Aimee Semple MacPherson brought her toyboy lovers.  Premiere organic cuisine with berry wines, then you can browse the store for power crystals, I-Ching sticks and literature from Alastair Crowley and Edgar Cayce. Faaar- Out !

1991- The TV show Home Improvementdebuted, making a star out of stand up comedian Tim Allen.


Monday, September 16, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 16, 2019


Birthdays: J.C. Penney (James Cash Penney), B.B. King, Anne Francis, Linda Darnel, Nadia Boulanger, Alan Funt, George Chakiris, Peter Falk, Ed Begley Jr, Jennifer Tilly, Molly Shannon, Marvin Middlemark 1919-the inventor of the rabbit ears TV antenna, Mickey Rourke is 63, Lauren Bacall 

1920- Enrico Caruso made his last recordings for the Victor Recording Company.

1938- Los Angeles Mayor Frank Shaw recalled for corruption. The city father's frustration with the mob corruption of politicians and police back east moved them to create the unique city charter that made the Los Angeles City Council more powerful than the Mayor, and made the LAPD an independent entity. So after the LA riots, Mayor Tom Bradley could not fire LAPD chief Darryl Gates, when he thought him incompetent. 

1941- CBS radio premiered the Arkansas Traveler Show. In it, bandleader Bob Burns played a strange instrument made out of a stovepipe he called a Bazooka. Later, when the US Army issued the first hand-held rocket launchers to their infantry, the GI’s called the things bazookas because it resembled Burn’s instrument.


1949- Chuck Jones "Fast and Furrious"the First Road Runner-Coyote cartoon.

1963- The Beatles record “She Loves You-Yeah,Yeah,Yeah.” on the Swan Records label.

1963- The sci-fi thriller series The Outer Limitspremiered- Do not attempt to adjust your television- We control the horizontal, We control the vertical, etc.

1964- The Peter Potamus Showdebuted. Time for my hippo-hurricane-holler.

1965- The Dean Martin Showpremiered on NBC. “Well, Ah think I’m gonna go to da couch now..”

1966- the last LOOK magazine published.

1966- The new Metropolitan Opera House in Lincoln Center had its opening night. A performance of Samuel Barbers Anthony & Cleopatra sung by Leontyne Price and Justino Diaz. It was a near disastrous night because Ms Price got locked in a pyramid for awhile, and couldn’t get out.

1969- President Nixon appears on the TV comedy "Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In" and says:" Sock it to Me?"

1983- Arnold Schwarzenegger became a US citizen.

1984- “Miami Vice”TV show debuted.

1985- Steve Jobs was kicked out of the chairmanship of Apple. CEO John Scully denies he actually fired Jobs. He just stripped him of all his authority and this day Jobs quit. Jobs always claimed he had been fired. Jobs went on to run his new company Next and Pixar. In Dec 1996, after failing revenue, Steve Jobs was invited back to take over Apple. At the time of his death in 2007, Apple was the richest company on earth. 

2003- Sheb Wooley, the composer of the 1951 hit “One Eyed One Horned Flying Purple People Eater” and the theme song of the TV show Hee Haw, died in Henderson Tennessee at age 82.


Sunday, September 15, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 15, 2019


Birthdays: James Fennimore Cooper, William Howard Taft, Porfirio Diaz- Mexican President 1884-1911, Agatha Christie, Cannonball Adderly, Bruno Walter, Yuri Noorstein, Merlin Olsen, Oliver Stone, Jean Renoir (film director and son of painter August Renoir), Alexander Korda, Jesse Norman, Robert Benchley, Ron Shelton, Fay Wray, Tommy Lee Jones is 73, Britain’s Prince Harry is 35


1928- Walt Disney staged the first recording session for the music for Steamboat Willie. He was unhappy with the results, so he pawned his car to raise the cash to make a second session happen. 

1930- The first Blondie comic strip. 

1930- Hoagy Carmichael first recorded “Georgia on My Mind”.

1936- MGM producer Irving Thallberg, the "Boy Genius" of Hollywood, died of a pneumonia at age 37. He was the inspiration for F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Last Tycoon". His boss Louis B. Mayer was beginning to resent his popularity. When actress Gloria Swanson asked Mayer how he felt about Thallberg's death, Mayer replied:" God has been very kind to me."  

1945-In occupied Berlin, composer Anton Webern was shot and killed by an American sentry when he went outside for a smoke in violation citywide night curfew orders.  



1954- The day of shooting on the film The Seven Year Itch, when Marilyn Monroe stood over the subway grate and let the breeze blow her dress up, much to the annoyance of her husband, baseball star Joe Dimaggio. Her little white halter dress was thereafter known as a Marilyn Dress.


1957-The TV series Bachelor Fatherstarring John Forsythe premiered.


1965- "Green Acres"TV show debuted. Arnold Ziffel the pig gains national prominence.

1973- Star Trekanimated series by Filmation premiered. This was the first time Kirk, Spock, Sulu and Uhura were untied again with a Roddenberry script since the original series was cancelled in 1969.


1998- Rap star Coolio is busted in Lawndale Cal for driving on the wrong side of the road, using an expired license and having a 9mm pistol and bag of marijuana in his car. 


Saturday, September 14, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 14, 2019


Birthdays: Lao Tzu -604 BC, Caliph Al Mansur -the founder of Bagdhad-711AD, Dr. Ivan Pavlov, Charles Dana Gibson, Margaret Sanger the founder of Planned Parenthood, Clayton Moore-TV’s Lone Ranger, Luigi Cherubini, Hollywood Producer Hal Wallis, Joey Heatherton, Bowser from Sha-Na-Na., Walter Koenig-Star Trek’s Mr. Chekov, Nicole Williamson, Sam Neill is 72

1927-Modern dance pioneer Isadora Duncan died in freak car accident when her long scarf tangled in the spokes of her Bugatti sportscar and snapped her neck. She was 50. The scarf was a gift from the mother of future movie director Preston Sturges.

1927- Gene Austin recorded “My Blue Heaven”. 

1955- Little Richard recorded the song, “ Tutti Fruiti”.

1957- TV show “Have Gun Will Travel” with Richard Boone as Paladin, premiered.
The head writer of this show was Gene Roddenberry, who would later create Star Trek.



1968-Filmation's "the Archies" Show. "Sugar...ah, honey honey...."

1972- Premiere of the TV show The Waltons. “ Goodnight John-Boy.”

1978- The Mork & Mindy Showwith a young Robin Williams. “Na-Nuu, Na-Nuu.”

1985- Disney's TV shows "Gummi Bears and Wuzzlespremiered."

2002- Millennium Actressby director Saytoshi Kon premiered.

Friday, September 13, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 13, 2019


  Birthdays: Gen "BlackJack" Pershing, Clara Schumann, Milton Hershey, Arnold Schoenburg, Yma Sumac ( Star of Brazilian jazz and crossword puzzles- real name Zoila Augusta Emperatriz Chavarri del Castillo, from Ichocán, Peru. Descendent of Inca royalty), Jacqueline Bissett is 75, Frank Marshal, Laura Secord, Jesse L. Lasky, Richard Kiel – Jaws in the James Bond movies, Maurice Jarre, Roald Dahl, Don Bluth is 82, Fred Silverman “The Man with the Golden Gut.” Tyler Perry is 50

1928- Riding high on their big hit film The Jazz Singer, the Warner Bros. buy out First National Pictures and move into their big Burbank studio lot, where they are still today.

1945- Bugsy Siegel bought a 30 acre roadside tract from a widow in Las Vegas. On it will rise the first great Las Vegas Casino hotel-resort, the Flamingo. There were two little hayseed casinos in Vegas already, but the big glitzy hotel strip of mega casinos was Bugsy's dream.

1961- TV sitcom Car 54, Where Are You? debuted.

1965 – Ghidrah the Three Headed Monster was released in the U.S.

50 Years Ago- 1969-Hanna & Barbera's "Scooby-Doo, where are you?" and "Dastardly and Mutley and their Flying Machines" premiered.

1974- The Rockford Files TV series with James Garner debut.

1974- Kolchak the Night Stalker mystery TV series with Darin McGavin premiered. It was the show that inspired Chris Carter to create The X-Files.


 1979- On his birthday, Animator Don Bluth quits Walt Disney Studios taking a third of the top artists with him. Bluth becomes Disney's most serious rival since Max Fleischer and helped sparked the animation renaissance of the 1990s. A whole new group of young talent, "bluthies", exert great influence throughout the animation business.

1993- The Animaniacs Show premiered.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 12, 2019


Birthdays: Piero 'the Fatuous' de Medici, King Francis I of France-1494, H.L. Mencken, Maurice Chevalier, Ben Blue, Jesse Owens, Barry White, Alfred A. Knopf, Hans Zimmer, Rachael Ward, Michael Odaatje- author of The English Patient, Margaret Hamilton, Joe Pantoliano “Joey Pants”, Ian Holm is 88, Jennifer Hudson is 39.

1846- Poet Elizabeth Barrett secretly eloped with poet Robert Browning and were married at St. Marlybone Church in Durham England. Her father had refused his permission for the match but the Browning’s did it anyway, and ran off to Italy.

1866-Theater producer Fred Niblo got stuck with a French ballet troupe stranded and broke after the New York Academy of Music burned down. So he combined the dancers with a rather mundane melodrama and created" The Black Crook" and invented the first true Broadway Musical. It ran for twenty years and was continually revived until 1925.

1910- Gustav Mahler’s Symphony # 8, The Symphony of a Thousand, premiered in Munich.



1932- In his Thimble Theatre comic strip E.C. Segar introduced Popeye's perennial nemesis Bluto. 

1940- In southern France near Montignac a pet dog fell through a crack in the ground into an underground chamber. When four boys follow in to retrieve the dog they discover the Lascaux Caves Ice-Age paintings, where, a Stone Age man created some of the earliest artwork.

1941-THE WALT DISNEY STRIKE ENDS- Everyone goes back to work after the NLRB, with a lot of behind the scenes pressure from the Bank of America, settled the dispute. Walt Disney had to recognize the cartoonists guild, give screen credits, double the salaries of low paid workers retroactive to May 29th and re-hire animator Art Babbitt.  Walt Disney immediately got on a train to Washington to try and convince the feds to reverse the decision or get an injunction in court. He failed. Many of the lead strikers were made to feel so unwelcome, they left anyway and formed UPA Studios. Ironically within a few months the war would break out and artists who had been bitter foes would be compelled to work side by side in the U.S. Army Picture Unit.

1945- Young Captain Ronald Reagan was discharged from the US Army Signal Corps. He never left Hollywood but starred in movies, training films and USO benefits. Yet in his old age he acted the great war hero. Some annoyed veterans told me Marlene Dietrich in fishnet stockings and pumps got closer to the fighting than Captain Reagan ever did.

1954- Television comedian Ernie Kovacs married Edie Adams, the Muriel Cigar Girl. They married in Mexico, and at the insistence of Kovacs used a priest who read the entire service in Spanish, a language neither of them understood.

1953- THE RED REDHEAD? McCarthy investigators accused TV star Lucille Ball of being a communist. She and husband Desi Arnez immediately went and testified that Lucy’s grandfather was an old Socialist who routinely enrolled all his grandkids in the Communist Party as their birthday present. America wouldn’t stand to see their favorite TV family go down, so the matter quickly blew over. Years later Desi would condescendingly joke:" Lucy didn’t even know who the mayor of L.A. was.”” The only thing that was red about Lucy was her hair, and even that wasn’t real!"

1957- Market researcher James M. Vicary explains at a press conference the theory of Subliminal Advertising. His company proposed to unconsciously compel people to buy products by flashing messages at 1/24th of a second during movies. Even though the concept was discredited (givetomsitomoney) by the American Psychiatric Association  (givetomsitomoney) a national panic ensued as people feared they were being brainwashed.

1965- The Beatles released 'Yesterday'.

1966-"Gee Mr. French..." Family Affair premiered on TV.

1966- The Monkees TV show premiered. Two young television executives Bert Schneider and Sam Rafaelson convince their network to make "A Hard Day's Night" for American television. Of the four kids in the make-believe band Mike Nesmith was the only real musician. Micky Dolenz had to be taught how to play the drums the first day of shooting. Insiders nicknamed them "The Pre-Fab Four".  Still, the show was a major hit, won Emmy Awards and all their albums went gold. The producers took that success and used it to finance the hit film "Easy Rider". Mike Nesmith later inherited a fortune from his mom developing the Liquid Paper Company, and used his fortune to help start MTV. 

1992- Anthony Perkins, the star of Hitchcock’s Psycho, died of HIV/AIDS. His widow, Berry Berensen the sister of actress Marisa Berensen, died in one of the hijacked airliners that plunged into the World Trade Center on 9-11.

2003- Country-western singer Johnny Cash died of diabetes at 71.

2005- Disneyland Hong Kong opened.

2010- At the Video Music Awards, singer Lady Gaga wears a dress made out of 50 lbs of raw meat. 


Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 11, 2019


Birthdays: O. Henry, D.H. Lawrence, Brian DePalma, Hedy Lamarr, Lola Falana, Paul "Bear" Bryant, Tom Landry, Kristy McNichol, Lola Falana, Pinto Colvig the voice of Goofy, Grumpy, Pluto & Bozo the Clown, Peter Tosh, Virginia Madsen, Amy Madigan, Moby, Brad Bird is 62.

1841- British artist John Reno invented oil paint in a tube.

1847- Stephen Fosters song “Oh Susanna” published. Sometimes called the first pop song. 

1914- W.C. Handy's Saint Louis Blues, the first true Jazz recording to gain national popularity.  Also called the Birth of the Blues. Myron “Grim” Natwick, the cartoonist who would one day create Betty Boop, did the artwork for the music coversheet. For this he was paid one gold dollar.

1916- The Star Spangled Banner first sung at a baseball game at Cooperstown New York.

1947-Radio Bejing went on the air.

1951-METROPOLIS TO MOSCOW? Robert Shayne, the actor who played the Inspector Henderson character for television’s Superman show appeared before the House American Activities Committee accused of being a communist. He was led off the set by the FBI in handcuffs as George Reeves (Superman) and Jack Larson (Jimmy Olsen) protested vigorously. He was eventually cleared of all charges and continued to do small parts in TV until his retirement in 1990.

1960- Terrytoon's Deputy DawgTV show.

1960- Nancy Sinatra married Tommy Sands.

1966- "Kimba the White Lion"debuts in the U.S.

1967-The Beatles began filming the Magical Mystery Tour.

1971- The “Jackson Five” Saturday morning cartoon show.

1972- The BBC quiz show Mastermind first broadcast. The shows creator Malcolm Muggeridge claimed he got the idea while a prisoner of the Japanese in Malaysia. In truth the show resembles an interrogation. Some postman sits in a dark room with a single spotlight in his face while people shoot questions at him about the lesser known works of Thomas Hardy, etc.

1987-Peter Gabriel's "Sledgehammer" wins MTV's Best Video Award.

1987- Reggae great Peter Tosh and two others were shot and killed by
thieves who were robbing his Kingston, Jamaica home.

1992- Actor Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), began a second career as the voice of The Joker in Batman, The Animated Series.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 10, 2019


  Birthdays: Fae Wray, Ian Fleming, Raymond Scott (composer of songs Carl Stalling loved to score into Bugs Bunny cartoons), Margaret Trudeau, Amy Irving, Arnold Palmer, Charles Kuralt, Jose Feliciano, Karl Lagerfield, Chris Columbus, Charles Simonyi- who designed Microsoft Word, Colin Firth is 59

1953 - Swanson Foods sells it's first "TV dinner"

1955- the TV series 'Gunsmoke'premiered.

1963- The First New York Film Festival opened with Luis Bunuel’s The Exterminating Angel.

1966- H&B's Frankenstein Jr.and The Impossiblesdebut.

1968- Hanna Barbera's Space Ghost and Dino Boy' debut.

1972- Premiere of the TV special Liza with a Z. Bob Fosse directed and choreographed the one woman show of the spangled 23 year old. 



1977- H&B’s “Captain Caveman and the Teen Angels’show.


1981- Picasso's painting Guernicawas at last returned to Spain.


1993- The TV series The X Filespremiered. The truth is out there.

2009- The first D-23 opened in Anaheim. It is an annual Comicon just for Disneyanna fans. D-23 means the year the Walt Disney Company began, 1923.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Animation Fun Facts for Sept 9, 2019


Birthdays: Antonio Frescobaldi, Captain William Bligh, Jimmy the Greek Snyder, Joe Theismann, Cliff Robertson, Angela Cartwright, Alf Landon, Dee Dee Sharpe who sang the 60's R&B hit the Mashed Potato, Michael Keaton, Don Mattingly, Otis Redding, Anita Ekberg, Topol, Colonel Lyman Sanders the creator of Kentucky Fried Chicken, James Hilton-writer who created the name for paradise- Shangri-La, in his novel Lost Horizons. Adam Sandler is 53, Michelle Williams is 39, Hugh Grant is 60

1908- THE PATENTS TRUST- Thomas Edison, Charles Pathe and Leon Gaumont form the Motion Picture Patents Group. Called the "Trust". Their attempt to monopolize movie production and strangle off the independents had a lot to do with the early filmmakers exodus to Los Angeles. Otherwise the film capitol of the world would have been Ft. Lee, New Jersey.  The only positive result of the trust was they enforced a regular industry standard for film stock of 35 mm running at 24 frames per second. It seems the Mitchell Camera Company was developing a motorized motion picture camera to replace the hand crank variety but they needed an official speed to set it at. In a contentious meeting of the Trust held at the Waldorf Astoria no one could settle on a single speed. Finally the compromise was made to make it the number of delegates in the room- 24.

1926 – The National Broadcasting Company or NBC created by the Radio Corporation of America, RCA. Under the direction of David Sarnoff it became the powerhouse network of broadcasting, recording and later television.

1939- The first Andy Panda cartoon.

1939- The first day of shooting on Charlie Chaplin’s film the Great Dictator. The first day was the Ghetto street scene. One of his distributors grumbled “By the time Chaplin finishes his movie, people won’t even remember who Hitler ever was.”

1949- White Heat, with James Cagney premiered.

1950 - 1st use of TV laugh track invented by Hank McCune.

1951 - 1st broadcast of the soap opera" Love of Life " on CBS-TV.

1956- Elvis Presley appeared on nationwide television on the Ed Sullivan Show. Sullivan himself had vowed never to have the kid on his show but caved in to network pressure. He stayed home that first time, and actor Charles Laughton was the substitute host. CBS Network censors thought the gyrations of Elvis' pelvis so obscene that in many markets they blacked out the lower portion of the screen so he was covered the waist down.


1967- Jay Ward’s show George of the Jungle premiered, with Super Chicken and Tom Slick sequences.


1982- Princess Grace of Monaco, the former movie actress Grace Kelly, died in a car accident on the mountainous hill roads of Monaco. Twenty years earlier in the film To Catch a Thief, Alfred Hitchcock had her drive her car at dangerous speeds over the exact same hairpin turns.

1985- She-Ra the Princess of Power premiered on TV.