November 8, 1962 -
Lewis Milestone's second major Hollywood telling of the Mutany on the Bounty, starring Marlon Brando, Trevor Howard and Richard Harris, premiered on this date.
Marlon Brando, wearing his naval uniform, was widely booed and jeered at the New York City premiere, while Trevor Howard received thunderous applause. Brando walked out of the cinema after the audience started laughing at his English accent.
November 8, 1971 -
Led Zeppelin released their untitled fourth album, on this date.
And kids remember, according to the Consumer Protection and Toxic Materials Committee of the California State Assembly, if you play Stairway to Heaven backwards, you can hear:
So, don't play you albums backwards (many of you have no idea what albums are.)
November 8, 1978 -
Richard Attenborough's masterful adaptation of William Goldman's thriller, Magic, starring Anthony Hopkins, Ann-Margret, and Burgess Meredith premiered in the US on this date.
Upon seeing the ventriloquist dummy, Fats for the first time, Anthony Hopkins was allowed to take the doll home to work with it. However, he wound up being so unnerved by it, that he called the consulting ventriloquist in the middle of the night, threatening to throw Fats into the canyon if someone didn't come and get the doll immediately. Richard Attenborough ended up going to Hopkins' house to calm him down.
November 8, 1979 -
The program, The Iran Crisis: America Held Hostage, premiered on ABC-TV on this date.
The show was planned to be temporary, but it evolved into Nightline in March of 1980.
November 8, 1989 -
Kenneth Branagh's adaptation of William Shakespeare's play, Henry V, starring Kenneth Branagh, Paul Scofield, Derek Jacobi, Ian Holm, Emma Thompson, Alec McCowen, Judi Dench, Robbie Coltrane, Brian Blessed, and Christian Bale, premiered on this date.
Kenneth Brannagh said in an interview that carrying the "corpse" of Christian Bale caused him terrible back pain. He carried his dead weight for the whole of a long tracking shot. The look on his face was genuine pain, and not acting.
Another ordinary day
Today in History:
November 8, 1431 -
Vlad III the Impaler (Vlad Dracula), Transylvanian prince, inspiring the name of the vampire in Bram Stoker's 1897 novel Dracula, was probably born on this date.
People had better things to do back then (like find something to eat or keep warm) than keep track of the birth date of some sadistic royal person.
November 8, 1519 -
The Aztecs and their leader, Moctezuma, foolishly welcomed Hernando Cortez and about 300 Spanish soldiers, 18 horses and thousands of Mexico's native inhabitants who had grown resentful of Aztec rule marched unmolested into Tenochtitlán, the capital city of the Aztec empire, on this date.
The Aztec ruler Moctezuma, believing that Cortez could be the white-skinned deity Quetzalcoatl, whose return had been foretold for centuries, greeted the arrival of these strange visitors with courtesy--at least until it became clear that the Spaniards were all too human and bent on conquest.
November 8, 1789 -
Elijah Craig, a Baptist minister, from Georgetown, Kentucky, distilled the first sour-mash whiskey for public sale on this date.
November 8th, 1895 -
Wilhelm Röntgen discovered X-rays on this date, when he discovered treated cardboard he was using in routine experiments glowed in certain situations – the result of radiation hitting the surface.
During subsequent experiments he found that objects of different thicknesses interposed in the path of the rays showed variable transparency to them when recorded on a photographic plate.
November 8, 1923 -
Adolf Schicklgruber, failed artist and World War I veteran, launched his first attempt to seize power with a failed coup in Munich, Germany, that came to be known as the Beer-Hall Putsch. He proclaimed himself chancellor and General Erich Ludendorff dictator.
No one really taken him too seriously at the time. Unfortunately, he wasn't joking.
November 8, 1950 -
The world’s first battle in which a jet plane shoots down another jet plane took place on this date, early in the Korean War during a raid near the Yalu River, which separates Korea and China. A group of about ten Soviet MiG-15 jet fighters approach the American bombers and were confronted by the four U.S. fighter jets escorting the bombers, Lockheed F-80 “Shooting Stars.”
Within about five minutes one MiG was destroyed, another was damaged, and the rest were in retreat. None of the U.S. jets were damaged. U.S. Air Force Lieutenant Robert Brown was credited with being the first pilot to take down another jet fighter.
November 8, 1954 -
I never knew when I was gong to leave. I might be walking over to a kid's house, then of all a sudden I would just stick out my thumb and hitchhike across three states.
Rickie Lee Jones, The Duchess of Coolsville, two-time Grammy Award-winning vocalist, musician, songwriter and producer, was born on this date.
November 8, 1957 -
Britain tested its first hydrogen bomb, called Operation: Grapple X, over Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean, on this date. (The U.K. had become an actual thermonuclear power with the detonation of Grapple X.)
It was a bit more powerful than they expected and caused infrastructure damage and destroyed some buildings on the island. I'm guessing this finally answers the question for me: No, I do not wish to spend Christmas (or any time for that matter) on Christmas Island.
November 8, 1994 -
One of my problems is I am getting so mature that I have to pick up a TV and toss it through the coffee table just to remind people of who I am. I want to go ranting and screaming into the grave.
Michael O'Donoghue writer for National Lampoon magazine and the first head writer for Saturday Night Live, died on this date, of a cerebral hemorrhage at age 54, after a long history of what were thought to be chronic migraine headaches.
(Hanukkah starts at sundown on the 2nd of December at 4:46 pm, in NYC. I believe if I were a child I would eagerly count the evening of the 2nd as the start, so that's what I'm going with.)
And so it goes.