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Today in History: Saturday, December 16, 2023

© by CBS

The original “One Day at a Time” debuted on CBS in 1975….“Dragnet,” which officially launched on January 3, 1952, was previewed on the NBC variety half-hour “Chesterfield Sound Off Time” with Jack Webb and Raymond Burr in 1951..Jenilee Harrison made her first appearance as Chrissy’s cousin Cindy Snow on the ABC sitcom “Three’s Company” in 1980. It was the first of her 42 episodes on the series. When Priscilla Barnes joined the cast in season 6 as nurse Terri Alden, Harrison was downgraded and ultimately exited “Three’s Company”…Two classic episodes of NBC sitcom “Seinfeld” originally aired. In 1992, Elaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) sent Christmas cards with, unbeknownst to her and the card’s photographer Kramer (Michael Richards), an unintentional revealing image of herself. And, in 1993, George (Jason Alexander) converted to the Latvian Orthodox religion in order to be with his girlfriend.

Charlie Chaplin began his film career at Keystone at $150 per week in 1913…Shirley Temple announced her retirement from acting at the age of 22 in 1950…“Lawrence of Arabia” directed by David Lean and starring Peter O’Toole, opened  in the United States in 1962. It won seven Oscars including Best Picture and Best Director…“Hello Dolly!” starring Barbra Streisand opened in 1969. It won 3 Academy Awards: Best Art Direction, Best Score of a Musical Picture and Best Sound…“Love Story” starring Ryan O’Neal and Ali McGraw was released in 1970…“The Color Purple”, based on the novel by Alice Walker, directed by Stephen Spielberg, and starring Whoopi GoldbergDanny Glover and Oprah Winfrey, opened in 1985. It was nominated for 11 Oscars but did not win any… Best Picture winner “Rain Man” starring Dustin Hoffman (in his Best Actor Oscar-winning role) and Tom Cruise opened in 1988…Hit farcical comedy “Dumb and Dumber” directed by the Farrelly Brothers and starring Jim CarreyJeff Daniels and Lauren Holly was released in theaters in 1994.

Reaching No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart: “Me and Mrs. Jones” by Billy Paul in 1972…Mariah Carey single “All I Want For Christmas Is You” first hit No. 1 in 2019, 25 years after its initial release. This week, it revisited the top spot.

The famous improvisational comedy club Second City opened for business in Chicago in 1959. It was the original place that began the careers of many comedians and comic actors like Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, John Candy, John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Eugene Levy, Catherine O’Hara, Steve Carnell, Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler among others…Then- President-elect George W. Bush tapped Colin Powell as U.S. Secretary of State in 2000, making Powell the first Black American to serve in that position.

In 2019, New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees makes his 540th career touchdown pass, breaking Peyton Manning‘s former NFL record. Thru Dec. 16, 2020, Brees has thrown for 565 touchdowns in his career.

Celebrity Birthdays:
Actress Joyce Bulifant (“The Mary Tyler Moore Show”) is 86; actress Liv Ullman (“The Emigrants”) is 85; “60 Minutes” journalist Lesley Stahl is 82; actress Alison La Placa (“Open House”) is 64; actor Jon Tenney (“The Closer”) is 62; actor Benjamin Bratt is 60; actor-comedian JB Smoove (“Curb Your Enthusiasm”) is 58; actress Miranda Otto (“Lord of the Rings”) is 56; actress Krysten Ritter (“Don’t Trust the B___ in Apt. 23) is 42; rapper Tramar Dillard aka Flo Rida is also 42; singer Zara Larsson is 26.

Did You Know?
“One Day at a Time” concluded after nine seasons on May 28, 1984. At the time, CBS expressed interest in another two seasons but Bonnie Franklin and Valerie Bertinelli called it quits. A backdoor pilot aired one week after the series ended featuring Pat Harrington, Jr. as Dwayne Schneider as he moves to Florida to take care of his suddenly orphaned niece and nephew. But it was not picked up to series.