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This Day in History: Friday, July 29, 2022

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Jack Paar began his five season hosting duties on NBC’s “The Tonight Show” in 1957…In 1974, Jim Hartz became the first host of NBC’s “The Today Show” to share the title of co-anchor with a woman (who was Barbara Walters)…The “wedding of the century,” Charles, Prince of Wales and Lady Diana Frances Spencer, took place at St Paul’s Cathedral, London, United Kingdom in 1981. It was watched by an estimated global TV audience of 750 million viewers. The couple separated in 1992 and divorced in 1996…“Friday Night Videos” debuted on NBC in 1983.  It ran through May 24, 2002…”Boy Meets Boy,” a gay male version of “The Bachelor”, debuted on Bravo in 2003. Its six-episode single season run was all that was produced for the series…Sketch comedy “Blue Collar TV,” featuring Jeff FoxworthyBill Engvall and Larry the Cable Guy, premiered on The WB in 2004. It aired for two seasons…President Barack Obama visited ABC’s “The View” in 2010, making him the first sitting president to appear on a daytime talk show…The Comedy Central Roast of Bruce Willis first aired in 2018. Joseph Gordon-Levitt was the night’s “roastmaster”, with the guests including Martha Stewart, Dennis Rodman, Willis’ “Moonlighting” co-star Cybill Shepherd and Willis’ first wife Demi Moore…Comedic talk show “Lights Out with David Spade” debuted on Comedy Central in the post-“Daily Show” slot in 2019. A total of 107 nightly editions were produced in seven-and-a-half months until the pandemic-caused lockdowns forced its conclusion… “At Home with Amy Sedaris“, the comedic parody of hospitality TV shows, concluded its series run on truTV in 2020. Thirty episodes were produced across three seasons.

Test footage first created for Walt Disney’s “Steamboat Willie” with Mickey Mouse was seen in 1928. The cartoon is considered the debut of Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse (although both characters appeared several months earlier in a test screening of “Plane Crazy”)…”National Lampoon’s Vacation,” starring Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo, premiered in 1983. Exactly 32 years later, in 2015, the revival of the film with Ed Helms and Christina Applegate opened…Tom Cruise continued his successful box office streak with “Cocktail,” which opened in 1988. It also starred Elisabeth Shue and Bryan BrownJim Carrey followed up on his post-“Ace Ventura” success with the hit comedy “The Mask,” which opened in 1994. The film marked the cinematic debut of actress Cameron Diaz…A pre-teen Lindsey Lohan portrayed both roles of teen sisters in the remake of “The Parent Trap,” which was released in 1998.

The Beatles movie “Help” opened in theaters in 1965… Reaching No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100: “Light My Fire” by The Doors in 1967; “Alone Again (Naturally)” by Gilbert O’Sullivan in 1972; “It’s Gonna Be Me” by *NSYNC in 2000.News
President Dwight Eisenhower signed legislation establishing the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, or NASA, in 1958.Sports
Monica Seles beat Martina Navratilova in her return to tennis in 1995.

Celebrity Birthdays
Actor Robert Fuller (“Wagon Train”) is 90; actress Roz Kelly (“Happy Days”) is 80; actress Leslie Easterbrook (“Police Academy”) is 74; actor Mike Starr (“The Bodyguard”, “Dumb and Dumber”) is 73; “Project Runway” mentor Tim Gunn is 70; documentarian Ken Burns is also 70; singer Patti Scialfa (Bruce Springsteen’s wife) is 67; boxing analyst Teddy Atlas is also 67; actress Alexandra Paul (“Baywatch”) is 60; country singer Martina McBride is 57; actor Timothy Omundson (“Paych”) is 54: actor Wil Wheaton is 51; actor Stephen Dorff (“Deputy”) is 50; Boyz II Men singer Wanya Morris is also 50; “How I Met Your Mother” star Josh Radnor is 49.

Did You Know?
Jack Paar’s original announcer was comedic actor Franklin Pangborn (known for a trio of films starring W.C. Fields), but he was fired after only a few weeks for not showing enough “spontaneous enthusiasm”. His replacement was Hugh Downs, who stayed with Paar to the end….Unlike most sketch comedy programs, each episode of “Blue Collar TV” was generally centered on a theme, which Foxworthy revealed at the start of each episode. Themes included “Food”, “Kids”, and “Stupidity”, among others, with Foxworthy generally performing a short comedic monologue based on the theme.