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It happened on this day


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october thirty-first

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1940: The Hollywood film industry has pledged its entire facilities to the U.S. Army for the production of movies used in training draftees.

 

1943: Max Reinhardt, 70, dies in New York.

 

1949: Regina, a musical based on Lillian Hellman’s The Little Foxes, opens on Broadway.

 

1956: Auntie Mame opens on Broadway with Rosalind Russell.

 

Tomorrow: wedding bells for John Wayne…

 

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november first

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1945: Robert E. Burns—who was convicted in 1922 of robbing a grocer of $5.85 and wrote the book I Am a Fugitive from a Georgia Chain Gang—has surrendered to the governor of Georgia. The Georgia Parole Board has commuted his 23-year sentence to time served.

 

1946: A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH premieres in London. It’s the first Royal Command Performance of a motion picture.

 

1952: Dixie Lee Crosby, singer and wife of Bing Crosby, has died at age 40 from cancer.

 

1954: John Wayne marries Peruvian actress Pilar Palette in Hawaii.

 

Tomorrow: Tallulah has the write stuff…

 

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november second

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1942: Stefanie Powers is born on this day in Los Angeles.

 

1947: Howard Hughes conducts the only flight of the Spruce Goose.

 

1950: Influential playwright George Bernard Shaw has died in St. Lawrence, England from a kidney infection. He was 94.

 

1952: Tallulah, by Tallulah Bankhead, is selling like hotcakes. The tell-all autobiography by the world’s most shocking celebrity is number one on the national bestseller list.

 

Tomorrow: tragedy for cowboy star…

 

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november third

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1946: Roy Rogers’ wife Arlene dies in Hollywood after giving birth to a son.

 

1953: Peggy Lee has divorced Brad Dexter in Santa Monica.

 

1955: The film version of GUYS AND DOLLS premieres in New York.

 

1959: Xavier Cugat testifies that he received questions and answers on The $64,000 Question.

 

Tomorrow: Rita Hayworth is unlucky in love…

 

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november fourth

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1942: Top songs—White Christmas; and Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition.

 

1948: THE SNAKE PIT premieres in New York.

 

1955: Rita Hayworth heads back to divorce court to end her marriage with singer Dick Haymes. He is her fourth husband.

 

1958: In the wake of the TV quiz show scandal and declining ratings, CBS drops The $64,000 Question.

 

Tomorrow: Sam Goldwyn makes a prediction…

 

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november fifth

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1942: Playwright/producer/songwriter George Cohan has died in New York. He was 64.

 

1945: Jessamyn West’s Friendly Persuasion is published.

 

1952: Sam Goldwyn says half the country’s movie theatres will close in five years because of television.

 

Tomorrow: Our Miss Arden …

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november sixth

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1941: Elmer Rice has been re-elected the president of the Dramatists Guild.

 

1950: Eve Arden has been named the most popular star on radio, thanks to her success in Our Miss Brooks.

 

1950: Sid Caesar is number one on television.

 

1955: Angry soccer fans have killed an umpire in Naples, Italy. Film at eleven.

 

Tomorrow: Ingrid Bergman is unlucky in love…

 

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november seventh

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1949: Eleanor Roosevelt publishes This I Remember, a memoir of life with FDR from 1924 to 1945.

 

1951: Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner have been married in Pennsylvania.

 

1956: Long Day’s Journey Into Night opens on Broadway and receives favorable reviews.

 

1957: Ingrid Bergman and Roberto Rossellini have separated on grounds of incompatibility of character.

 

1958: The love bug has bitten Martha Raye again. This time she has married her bodyguard in New Jersey.

 

Tomorrow: DeMille’s latest film…

 

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november eighth

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1949: ALL THE KING’S MEN premieres in New York.

 

1951: QUO VADIS premieres in New York. MGM publicity materials claim the picture cost $7 million to make.

 

1955: Victor Mature has been divorced by his wife in Santa Monica.

 

1956: Cecil B. DeMille’s THE TEN COMMANDMENTS premieres in New York.

 

1958: The hope diamond has been donated by jeweler Harry Winston to the Smithsonian. Value: a cool $1.5 million.

 

Tomorrow: Screen legend calls it quits…

 

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november ninth

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1942: Stage and screen character actress Edna May Oliver has died in Hollywood on her 59th birthday.

 

1947: United Artists releases BODY AND SOUL starring John Garfield.

 

1948: Keystone Kop Edgar Kennedy has died at 58 in San Fernando, California.

 

1953: Dylan Thomas is dead after a cerebral ailment at age 39. The Welsh poet was in New York on tour.

 

1954: Betty Hutton is retiring from show biz at the end of a Desert Inn nightclub engagement in Vegas.

 

Tomorrow: film shared by rival nations…

 

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november tenth

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1947: Ingrid Bergman and Bing Crosby have been rated the year’s most popular movie stars by Box Office Magazine.

 

1949: President Truman says that November 24th is Thanksgiving Day. Not all states have been observing the holiday on the same day.

 

1953: HOW TO MARRY A MILLIONAIRE premieres in New York.

 

1956: Victor Young, age 56, has died in Palm Springs. He conducted music heard in over 300 studio films.

 

1959: Maybe this will thaw out cold war relations? A Soviet-U.S. film exchange is occurring—the simultaneous premiere of THE CRANES ARE FLYING in Washington D.C. and MARTY in Moscow.

 

Tomorrow: Reagan is re-elected…

 

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november eleventh

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1945: Songwriter Jerome Kern has died in New York. He was 60.

 

1946: A manuscript of a string quartet by Benjamin Franklin has been found in Paris.

 

1947: GENTLEMAN’S AGREEMENT premieres in New York.

 

1948: JOAN OF ARC, starring Ingrid Bergman, premieres in New York.

 

1951: Ronald Reagan has been re-elected as the president of the Screen Actors Guild.

 

1962: Demi Moore is born on this day in Roswell, New Mexico.

 

Tomorrow: wedding bells for Joan Fontaine…

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I want to thank the readers who make this a popular thread each day, as we approach 7,000 views. I started this back in June and I am nearly half-way done. The thread will continue to have new posts from me through the end of next May, until the year-long cycle is complete.

 

Afterwards, I may do a few 'specials' where I examine everything that happened to Liz Taylor or to Charlie Chaplin or Ingrid Bergman-- the ones who seemed to make a lot of headlines.

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november twelfth

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1947: Baroness Orczy, author of The Scarlet Pimpernel, has died in London.

 

1950: Julia Marlowe, the most famous Shakespearean actress of her generation, has died at age 85 in New York.

 

1951: Paint Your Wagon opens on Broadway, receiving mixed reviews.

 

1952: Joan Fontaine has married Collier Young in Saratoga, California.

 

1957: Somerset Maugham has destroyed his personal letters. He doesn’t want them published after his death.

 

Tomorrow: Disney’s latest movie…

 

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november thirteenth

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1940: FANTASIA premieres in New York.

 

1941: NBC radio has cancelled all broadcasts originating from Berlin. At issue is Nazi censorship, which the network feels deprives news reports of any real value.

 

1955: Whoopi Goldberg is born on this day in Manhattan.

 

1958: John Randolph Hearst is dead at age 49 in the Virgin Islands.

 

Tomorrow: NBC has more trouble in Germany…

 

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november fourteenth

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1941: The German government is now banning reporters at NBC from broadcasting in its cities. The ban will also apply to other U.S. news companies.

 

1945: Top songs—Till the End of Time; and It Might As Well Be Spring.

 

1948: Charles, Prince of Wales, is born on this day.

 

1959: Maria Callas is separating from her husband in Italy.

 

Tomorrow: Screen legend’s death in Madrid…

 

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november fifteenth

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1940: Ethel Merman has married William B. Smith, manager of a film actors agency, in Maryland.

 

1952: CBS has a dedication ceremony for its new 15-acre production lot—Television City. Cost: $12 million.

 

1954: Lionel Barrymore has died at 76 in Van Nuys from a heart attack.

 

1956: LOVE ME TENDER premieres in New York.

 

1958: Tyrone Power has died in Madrid during the shooting of SOLOMON AND SHEBA. He was 44.

 

Tomorrow: The sound of Mary Martin…

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november sixteenth

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1940: The National Board of Review unanimously recommends films that stress social responsibility and idealism of our youth.

 

1942: Fox buys Maxwell Anderson’s hit Broadway play The Eve of St. Mark for $300,000.

 

1959: The Sound of Music opens on Broadway, receiving favorable reviews. The production stars Mary Martin and Theodore Bikel.

 

1981: William Holden has died at age 63 in Santa Monica.

 

Tomorrow: John Wayne’s latest film…

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Thank you for the Mary Martin/Theo Bikel photo from The Sound of Music.  I've only seen him on film in his older years and while I know he can sing wondered about him as a leading man.  He doesn't look bad here.

 

For the record I also had doubts about Christopher Plummer in the movie version as I'd only seen him as villains; he surprised me also.   

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Thank you for the Mary Martin/Theo Bikel photo from The Sound of Music.  I've only seen him on film in his older years and while I know he can sing wondered about him as a leading man.  He doesn't look bad here.

 

 

Yeah, in fact, I'd say Theo in his younger days there looked quite a lot like Tony Franciosa...after a good couple of meals.

 

(...am I RIGHT?!)

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november seventeenth

 

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1940: NBC will extend broadcasting into 20 Latin countries to promote Pan-American solidarity.

 

1943: Top songs—Paper Doll and Pistol Packin’ Mama.

 

1949: SHE WORE A YELLOW RIBBON premieres in New York.

 

1955: Lillian Hellman’s The Lark opens on Broadway and receives favorable reviews.

 

1956: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof closes on Broadway after 694 performances.

 

Tomorrow: Mary Pickford plans a motion picture comeback…

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november eighteenth

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1942: Thornton Wilder’s The Skin of Our Teeth opens in New York.

 

1948: No Nobel Peace Prize awards will be given this year due to a lack of suitable candidates.

 

1950: Death of a Salesman closes on Broadway after 742 performances.

 

1951: Mary Pickford, 58, and last on screen in 1933, announces she’ll act in THE LIBRARY, produced by Columbia Pictures.

 

1952: Mickey Rooney marries model Elaine Mahnken in Vegas.

 

1959: BEN-HUR premieres in New York.

 

Tomorrow: wedding bells for Pearl Bailey…

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november nineteenth

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1941: Marshall Field’s new Chicago newspaper will be called The Chicago Sun.

 

1952: Pearl Bailey marries drummer Louis Bellson in London.

 

1954: Sammy Davis Jr. has lost his left eye in a car accident.

 

1956: Kurosawa’s MAGNIFICENT SEVEN premieres in New York.

 

Tomorrow: Another triumph for Lillian Hellman…

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november nineteenth

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1952: Pearl Bailey marries drummer Louis Bellson in London.

 

 

 

 

My father was a partner in a music arranging company in the late 1960s (his partner, the actual arranger, was a crook, but that's another story). At the time, they were doing a lot of work for the Shady Grove and Painters Mill Music Fairs in Washington and Baltimore.

 

My dad and mom were fortunate enough to get to have dinner with the Bellsons on more than one occasion when they played those halls.

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