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Today in History: Friday, May 17, 2024

In 1975, NBC TV bought the rights to telecast 1939 theatrical “Gone With the Wind. The one time rights came with a price tag of $5 million…Bobby Ewing (Patrick Duffy) “died” on the season finale of “Dallas” in 1985. He returned the following season after it was all Pam’s (Victoria Principal) dream….Beloved Alex Trebek received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1999…Long-running “Beverly Hills, 90210” from Aaron Spelling concluded on Fox in 2000, as nearly 17 million viewers tuned in to the wedding of David (Brian Austin Green) and Donna (Tori Spelling). A total of 293 episodes were produced…Two short-lived series began: Fox dating competition “Coupled” in 2016; and ABC comedy “Downward Dog” in 2017…Six series of note concluded: 1) CBS prime time soap “Falcon Crest” in 1990; 2) NBC drama “Midnight Caller” in 1991; 3) syndicated “The Adventures of Superboy” in 1992 (which was originally titled just “Superboy”); 4) E! comedy “Talk Soup” in 2002; 5) AMC’s multi Emmy-winning drama “Mad Men” in 2015; and 6) MTV romantic comedy “Faking It” in 2016…Seven short-lived series concluded: 1) Fox sitcom “Stand By Your Man” in 1992; 2) CBS spy drama “The Agency” in 2003; 3) syndicated action-themed “She Spies” in 2004; 4) ABC sitcom “Romantically Challenged” in 2010; 5) The CW cheerleader comedy “Hellcats” in 2011; 6) ABC mystery thriller “Missing” in 2012; and 7) CBS “Criminal Minds” spin-off “Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders” in 2017…ABC’s two-part “Peter Benchley’s Creature” premiered in 1998. The miniseries about a terrorizing amphibious shark-like monster starred Craig T. Nelson and Kim Cattrall…In 2001, Prue Halliwell (Shannen Doherty) was killed by a demonic assassin in the third season finale of the original “Charmed” on The WB. It would mark Doherty’s final appearance on the series. Rose McGowan as Halliwell half-sister Paige Matthews entered the show at the start of season four…Also in 2001, Monica and Chandler (Courteney Cox and Matthew Perry) wed while Rachel (Jennifer Aniston) discovered she was pregnant in the seventh season finale of NBC sitcom “Friends“…Tom Bergeron hosted ABC’s “America’s Funniest Home Videos” for the final time in 2015, after 15 seasons on the program. For this, the 25th season finale, was filmed at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif. with Bergeron being carted off by original “AFV” host Bob Saget…“Catch-22”, the six-part satirical dark comedic WWII-set miniseries based on the Joseph Heller novel, premiered on Hulu in 2019. It starred Christopher AbbottKyle ChandlerHugh Laurie, and George Clooney. Clooney also served as an executive producer on the project…“Snowpiercer”, the post-apocalyptic dystopian drama set aboard the world’s only passenger train amidst the Earth having become a frozen wasteland, debuted on TNT in 2020…James Thomas Jr., aka “J.T.”, became the million dollar Sole Survivor on the 18th season finale of CBS reality competition “Survivor” in 2009, for the season entitled “Survivor: Tocantins – The Brazilian Highlands“. J.T. was the second castaway to ever win by a unanimous jury vote (joining Fiji’s Earl Cole), having defeated Stephen Fishbach by a 7-0 result. J.T. was the first-ever winner to receive no votes cast against him at any Tribal Council throughout a season. Until “Survivor: Cagayan” five years later, Tocantins was the final season to feature a final two to face the jury in the final Tribal Council. It then featured the final three in subsequent seasons.

“Our Gang” theatrical short “Bear Shooters” opened in theaters on this day in 1932. The scoop: Spud wants to go camping and shoot many bears with Jackie, Chubby, and Farina. But his mother has forced him to look after his little brother Wheezer, who has the croup. “Bear Shooters” was a remake of the 1924 silent entry “It’s a Bear.”

Stevie Wonder released single released “You are the Sunshine of My Life” in 1973...Taylor Swift was the big winner at the Billboard Music Awards in 2015, winning eight awards due to her successful album “1989”. The ABC network telecast drew 11.2 million viewers which marked a 14-year high for the event that had aired on Fox from 1990-2006…Just Sam (aka Samantha Diaz) was crowned the winner of ABC’s “American Idol” in 2020, on the singing competition’s 18th season finale. Much like other programs at the time, the COVID-19 pandemic had forced its staff and contestants to present and perform remotely from their homes.

The first Kentucky Derby was run at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky in 1875. The winning horse was Aristides…The New York Islanders won their fourth consecutive NHL Stanley Cup championship title, with a four-game sweep of the Edmonton Oilers in the Stanley Cup Final in 1983….In 1998, New York Yankees pitcher David Wells tossed a perfect game in a 4-0 win against the Minnesota Twins at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, NY. The fan giveaway promotion that day was Beanie Baby Day, for those 14 years or younger

L. Frank Baum’s “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” was first published in 1900. The book is considered by some to be the first American fairy tale because of its references to clear American locations such as Kansas and Omaha.
The New York Stock Exchange was founded at 70 Wall Street by 24 brokers in 1792…In 1996, President Bill Clinton signed Megan’s Law, which required that law-enforcement officials notify local schools, day-care centers, and residents of the presence of registered sex offenders in their communities…The U.S. Postal Service issued a stamp based on Charles M. Schulz’s “Peanuts” comic strip in 2001…Massachusetts became the first U.S. state to legalize same sex marriages in 2004.

Celebrity Birthdays:
TV personality Kathleen Sullivan is 71; singer Enya is 63; former late night talk show host Craig Ferguson is 62; actor David Eigenberg (“Sex and the City”) is 60; musician Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails is 59; actor Hill Harper (“CSI: NY,” ″He Got Game”) is 58; TV personality-interior designer Thom Filicia (“Queer Eye for the Straight Guy”) is 55; singer Jordan Knight of New Kids on the Block is 54; singer Josh Homme of Queens of the Stone Age is 51; actor Sendhil Ramamurthy (“Heroes”) is 50; R&B singer Kandi Burress is 48; actress Kat Foster (”’Til Death”) is 46; dancer Derek Hough is 39; actor Tahj Mowry (“Smart Guy,” ″Kim Possible”) is 38.

Did You Know?:
When Shannen Doherty left “Beverly Hills, 90210” in 1994, Drew Barrymore was offered a role on the show. Barrymore, who was featured in Aaron Spelling’s “2000 Mailibu Road” on CBS in the summer of 1992, wanted to focus on her film career. Other contenders before Tiffani Thiessen was cast included Alyssa Milano and Alicia Silverstone.