Friday, December 19, 2014

Everybody's getting into the act

Even Dr. Nick says: "Shalom, everybody!"

It's the fourth night of Hanukkah -

now it time to figure out how to get rid of all of your relatives.

December 19, 1961
Released in time for the holidays, the star-studded Stanley Kramer film, Judgment At Nuremberg, opened in New York City on this date.

Marlene Dietrich had a great deal of trouble performing in the scene between Mrs. Bertholt and Judge Haywood when she claims German civilians did not know of the atrocities the Nazi government committed during the war. Dietrich, who during the war had worked for the Allies against the Nazis, found the sentiment so repulsive that she could not keep her concentration. Only after counseling by Spencer Tracy was she able to complete the scene.

December 19, 1971
The pilot for the hit family series The Waltons, The Homecoming: A Christmas Story premiered on CBS-TV on this date

Earl Hamner's (the novelist, who book the series was based on) two children Scott and Carrie are in the film as two of the children listening to the missionary lady. Carrie is the short-dark-haired girl in a home-made hat and Scott is the boy with paler hair, also wearing a hat.

Today's Holiday SpecialGuess the theme.

December 19, 1971 -
A Clockwork Orange premiered on this date, originally with an X rating. Censors objected more to the sex scenes than the violence.

The doctor standing over Alex as he is being forced to watch violent films was a real doctor, ensuring that Malcolm McDowell's eyes didn't dry up.

December 19, 1997 -
The movie, Titanic was released in theaters on this date. This movie would become the most financially successful movie in U.S. history, grossing approximately $1.8 billion worldwide (until the release of Avatar in 2009, which grossed an astounding $2.075 billion. Avatar was conveniently directed by Mr. Cameron as well.)

In the scene where the water comes crashing into the Grand Staircase room, the film makers only had one shot at it because the entire set and furnishings were going to be destroyed in the shot.

December 19, 2001 -
New Line Cinema
releases the The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (based on the epic 1954 novel by J.R.R. Tolkien,) directed by Peter Jackson and starring a very large number of people in the U.S. on this date.

Christopher Lee
reads The Lord of the Rings once a year and has done so since the year it was published, and is the only member of the cast and crew ever to have met J.R.R. Tolkien.

Today in History:
December 19, 1154
Henry was 18 when we met and I was queen of France ... We shattered the commandments on the spot.

Henry Plantagenet of the Angevin dynasty was crowned Henry II, King of England with Eleanor of Aquitaine as queen, on this date.

December 19, 1733 -
Benjamin Franklin
, writing under the pseudonym of Poor Richard, published Poor Richard's Almanack on this date.

The book, filled with proverbs and parables, was published continuously for 25 years and became one of the most popular publications in colonial America, selling an average of 10,000 copies a year.

December 19, 1777 -
These are the times that try men's souls

General George Washington led his ragtag army of about 11,000 men to Valley Forge, Pa., to camp for the winter on this date.

December 19, 1903 -
On this date, the Williamsburg Bridge, was opened in New York City. It was America's first major suspension bridge using steel towers instead of the customary masonry towers.

It was built to alleviate traffic on the Brooklyn Bridge and to provide a link between Manhattan and the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. Taking over seven years to complete, the 1,600 foot Williamsburg Bridge was the world's longest suspension bridge until the 1920s.

December 19, 1922 -
In a Sheffield, England, courtroom, accused bigamist Theresa Vaughn admitted under oath that in the past five years she had acquired 61 husbands in 50 cities throughout England, Germany and South Africa, averaging a marriage a month.

And you think you've been busy.

December 19, 1928 -
The first autogyro flight in the U.S., piloted by H.F. Pitcairn, was made on this date.

The autogyro would later lead to the development of the helicopter.

December 19, 1941 -
days after Pearl Harbor, Franklin D. Roosevelt under authority of Congress, created the Office of Censorship. The bureau had discretion over communications with foreign countries. Participation by domestic publishers was "voluntary."

From December 1941 to August 1945, every letter that crossed international or U.S. territorial borders was subject to being opened and reviewed for details.

Sounds a little familiar.

December 19, 1972  -
Apollo 17
completed their mission and splashed down in the Pacific on this date.

With this return to earth, the Apollo program of manned lunar landings ended.

December 19, 1974 -
Nelson A. Rockefeller
was sworn in as the 41st vice president of the United States after a House vote. Rockefeller was the second person appointed Vice President under the 25th Amendment – the first being Gerald Ford (the man for whom he was serving as Vice President.)

After the proceedings, Rockefeller celebrates by copulating vigorously with three of his assistants in the Warren G. Harding memorial cloakroom.

And so it goes

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