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January 8, 2015 -- Bicentennial of the Battle of New Orleans


jakeem
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In addition to being Elvis' 80th birthday, January 8, 2015 is also of significance because it's the 200th anniversary of the Battle of New Orleans, which made Andrew Jackson a national hero and presidential material. It also put the finishing touches on the War of 1812, although the conflict between the United States and Great Britain had been settled weeks earlier. 

 

Cecil B. DeMille's black-and-white film "The Buccaneer" (1938) visited this territory with Fredric March as the notorious privateer Jean Lafitte, who sides with the American forces led by General Jackson (Hugh Sothern).

 

Anthony Quinn, who appeared as a character named Beluche in DeMille's film, was the director's son-in-law for a time. The only film that Quinn ever directed in his illustrious career was a 1958 color remake of "The Buccaneer," starring Yul Brynner as Lafitte and Charlton Heston as Jackson.

 

Here's a trailer featuring DeMille, who served as the executive producer of Quinn's version of "The Buccaneer":

 

 

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Interesting factoid, would have been interesting to screen both versions today. And also to screen The Day of the Locust, the 1975 film which features the premiere of The Buccaneer (1938).

 

100R-197-027.jpg

 

Is that where the infamous riot began?

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Although the song mentions the wrong year, Johnny Horton had the No. 1 hit of 1959 with "The Battle of New Orleans." Check out this elaborate production from the June 7, 1959 edition of "The Ed Sullivan Show" on CBS:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XBmE_clkBBU

 

 

Sadly, Horton was killed on November 5, 1960 after his appearance at the Skyline Club in Austin, Texas. His car was hit by a drunk driver in Milano, Texas. He was 35 years old.

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