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Today in History: Saturday, May 4, 2024

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Television and Radio:
NBC daytime drama “Another World” began its 35 season run on NBC in 1964…Bernard Fox debuted in his recurring role as Dr. Bombay on ABC sitcom “Bewitched” in 1967…In 1973, PBS’ airing of play “Steambath, starring Valerie Perrine, featured the first glimpse of female nudity on network television…In 1977 was the first of four interviews between President Richard Nixon and journalist David Frost. This premiere episode drew 45 million viewers, the largest television audience for a political interview in history…Also in 1977 was the season one finale of the original “Charlie’s Angels” on ABC, which featured the final regular appearance of Farrah Fawcett Majors. She ultimately returned for six guest appearances in seasons three and four…Short-lived CBS variety show “The Book of Lists”, hosted by Bill Bixby, launched in 1982…Blair (Lisa Whelchel) and Jo (Nancy McKeon) graduated from Eastland on the fourth season finale of NBC’s “The Facts of Life” in 1983…In 1985, Lana Turner was the 1,000th guest star on ABC’s “The Love Boat.” The series aired on ABC from 1977 to 1984…In 1985, News Corporation and 20th Century Fox Film Corporation announced their intent to purchase Metromedia’s television stations and Metromedia Producers Corp. for $3.5 billion. That would paved the way for the launch of the Fox broadcast network aka Fox Broadcasting Company, which debuted in October 1986…Part one of the six-part Civil War miniseries “North and South, Book II” premiered on ABC in 1986. It starred Patrick Swayze, James Read, David Carradine, Morgan Fairchild and Forest Whitaker…On ABC’s “Good Morning America” in 1998 was the debut of new hosts Lisa McRree and Kevin Newman. They replaced Joan Lunden and Charles Gibson, but exited in 1999 and were reassigned to other duties within ABC News…Game Show “Classic Concentration,” hosted by Alex Trebek, debuted on NBC in daytime in 1987. This marked the third edition of the “Concentration” game, following its runs from 1958-73 on NBC and from 1973-78 in syndication…In 1987, Valerie Harper made her final appearance as Valerie Hogan on the sitcom initially titled “Valerie”. Contractual disputes led to her dismissal and the series was renamed “Valerie’s Family” and finally, “The Hogan Family” with new lead Sandy DuncanJulia Louis-Dreyfus received the 2,407th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2010…Muppets creator Jim Henson made his final public appearance when he was a guest on syndicated “The Arsenio Hall Show” in 1990. Henson would pass away twelve days later…Dating game show “Next” premiered on MTV in 2005. It ran for six seasons within a three-year span for a total of 288 episodes…To celebrate the 550th episode of Fox’s animated “The Simpsons” in 2014, the Simpson family and other characters are turned into LEGOs in CG-animated form in the episode entitled “Brick Like Me”…“A Little Help With Carol Burnett”, featuring kids dishing out advice to celebrities and everyday people alike in front of a live audience, opened on Netflix in 2018…In 2020, CBS legal drama “All Rise” was the first prime time scripted series to produce an original episode since the nation’s March 11 lockdown due to coronavirus. FaceTime, WebEx, Zoom, and other videotelephony software were used to film the episode…Five short-lived series concluded: ABC sitcom “Just the Ten of Us” in 1990; Fox high school docuseries “Yearbook” in 1991; CBS sitcom “The Closer” (starring Tom Selleck) and The WB sitcom “Alright Already” (starring Carol Leifer) — both in 1998; and Olsen twins sitcom “So Little Time” on ABC Family in 2002. “Just the Ten of Us” was spunoff from “Growing Pains”…There were seven notable series finales: NBC’s soapy family drama “Sisters” in 1996; NBC sitcom “NewsRadio” in 1999; David E. Kelley medical drama “Chicago Hope” on CBS in 2000; CBS detective comedy-drama “Nash Bridges” in 2001; the original run of MTV’s alternative music showcase “120 Minutes” in 2003; CBS drama “The Guardian” in 2004, starring Simon Baker and Dabney Coleman; and witness protection dramedy “In Plain Sight” on USA Network in 2012 with Mary McCormack.

Theatrical “Gaslight,” starring an 18-year-old Angela Lansbury in her film debut, was released in 1944…Molly Ringwald theatrical “Sisteen Candles”, directed by John Hughes, opened in theaters in 1984.

The first annual “Grammy Awards” was telecast on 1959. The record of the year “Volare” by Domenico ModugnoGrand Funk Railroad hit No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100  with their version of “The Locomotion” in 1974…Mariah Carey’s “Always Be My Baby” hit No. 1 in 1996.

In 1979, Margaret Thatcher became the first female Prime Minister of Britain…In 2001, Robert Blake’s wife Bonnie Lee Bakely was shot and killed outside a Los Angeles restaurant. Blake was charged with one count of murder with special circumstances, but was found not guilty of murder and not guilty of one of the two counts of solicitation of murder

At the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby in 2019, a horse named Maximum Security first crossed the finish line but due to interference, its victory was voidied. Runner-up Country House, considered a long shot prior to the race, was thus declared the winner. It was the first disqualification in Kentucky Derby history due to a race infraction.

Celebrity Birthdays:
Jackson family matriarch Katherine Jackson is 94; actor Richard Jenkins (“The Shape of Water”) is 77; Jackie Jackson of the Jackson 5 is 73; singer Oleta Adams is 71; actress Pia Zadora is 70; country singer Randy Travis is 65; “The Waltons” star Mary McDonough (Erin) is 63; “SNL’s” Ana Gasteyer is 57; “Arrested Development” star Will Arnett is 54; “Dancing with the Stars” co-host Erin Andrews is 46; singer Lance Bass is 45.

-Did You Know?:
Pia Zadora is remembered for her infamous Golden Globe victory for Best New Star of the Year in 1982…Elizabeth Hoffman is known for playing the role of matriarch Beatrice Reed on NBC drama “Sisters. The original choice for the role, however, was “Family” star Sada Thompson, who turned it down…After a failed career in movies, Farrah Fawcett appeared opposite Ryan O’Neal in CBS sitcom “Good Sports” in 1991. It aired for only 15 episodes…In 2018, Mary McDonough’s book “Christmas on Honeysuckle Lane” was adapted into the Hallmark Channel film of the same name starring Alicia Witt and Colin Ferguson. Earlier, McDonough penned “Lessons From the Mountain.”