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Today in History: Friday, April 19, 2024

© by Photo courtesy of HBO Max

Television and Radio:
The American Broadcasting Company (ABC) launched in 1948…In 1987, the animated family named The Simpsons debuted on comedy/variety half-hour “The Tracey Ullman Show” as a series of shorts…NBC sitcom “Wings” premiered in 1990. It aired through May 21, 1997 and was what you would call a “time period hit”…Animated comedy “The Angry Beavers” opened on Nickelodeon in 1997. It aired for four seasons…The “Together At Home” concert for COVID-19 aid curated by Lady Gaga aired in 2020.

Shirley Temple appeared in her 1st feature length film, “Stand Up & Cheer” in 1934…“Casino Royale”, the James Bond comedy film starring Peter Sellers and David Niven, premiered in 1967. It is loosely based on Ian Fleming’s first James Bond novel…Charlton Heston starred as a New York City detective in the dystopian thriller “Soylent Green” which opened in theaters in 1973. It was the final film of Edward G. Robinson’s career before his passing…“My Big Fat Greek Wedding” starring Nia Vardalos, John Corbett, Michael Constantine and Laine Kazan and based on Vardalos’ one-woman play, opened in U.S. theaters in 2002. It was co-produced by Rita Wilson and Tom Hanks. Despite not reaching No. 1 at the box office, it earned over $240 million in North America making it the highest-grossing romantic comedy of all-time. It spawned the short-lived CBS sitcom “My Big Fat Greek Life” (also starring Vardalos) in 2003, and two movie sequels in 2016 and 2023, respectively.
Johnny Cash released his single “Ring Of Fire”, written by his future wife June Carter and Merle Kilgore, 1963…Barbra Streisand recorded single “Between Yesterday & Tomorrow” in 1973… Reaching No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100: “Call Me” by Blondie in 1980 and “Kiss” by Prince and the Revolution in 1986

Actress Mae West was found guilty of “obscenity and corrupting the morals of youth” in a New York stage play entitled “Sex” in 1927. She was sentenced to 10 days in prison and fined $500.

Bonnie Parker was captured in a failed hardware store burglary, and subsequently jailed in 1932. A grand jury fails to indict her, however, and she was released a few months later…In 1971, Charles Manson was sentenced to life in prison for the murder of Sharon Tate. He died in 2017 at the age of 83…Sally Ride was named the first American female astronaut in 1982…Rodney King was awarded $3,800,000 compensation by the Los Angeles County in 1994 for his police beating…Timothy McVeigh set a truck bomb at Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in 1995, killing 168 and injuring 500 people.

Celebrity Birthdays:
Actress Ashley Judd (“Missing”) is 56; Oscar nominee James Franco (“127 Hours”) is also 46; Oscar nominee Kate Hudson (“Almost Famous”) is 45.
Did You Know?:
The top-rated series on ABC the first season complete national ratings from Nielsen were available, in 1950-51, was half-hour western “The Lone Ranger.” It ranked No. 7 overall, with a 41.2 household rating. Leading the rankings that season was the “Texaco Star Theater” on NBC, hosted by Milton Berle, at a 61.6 household rating. If you think a 61.6 rating was hefty, “I Love Lucy” on CBS holds the record with the highest season long rating for any series historically at a 67.3 in 1952-1953.