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Today in History: Tuesday, August 8, 2023

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The long-defunct DuMont television network, which began operation in 1946, ceased broadcasting in 1956. Notable series airing on DuMont during its 10-year tenure were variety themed “Cavalcade of Stars;” “Ted Mack’s The Original Amateur Hour; “Cash and Carry, the first televised game show; and kids favorite “Captain Video and His Video Rangers”… “Hanging In”, the sitcom created by Norman Lear and starring Bill Macy (“Maude”), debuted on CBS in 1979. Only four episodes aired…”Here Comes Honey Boo Boo“, the reality spin-off of “Toddlers & Tiaras“, debuted on TLC in 2012. The series about the Thompson family featuring Alana “Boo Boo” and Mama June aired for four seasons within a two-year span. A fifth season had been filmed but wound up airing as a two-hour “lost episodes” special in April 2017…”The Knick“, the early 1900’s-set medical drama starring Clive Owen, debuted on Cinemax in 2014, during the pay cable’s brief foray into original scripted programming. Award-winning director Steven Soderbergh served as one of the critically acclaimed series’ executive producers. Twenty episodes were produced across two seasons — all of which were directed by Soderbergh…The Walt Disney Company announced plans to create its own streaming service in 2017, cancelling ties with Netflix. That service would become Disney+.

Notable films released: “White Lightning” starring Burt Reynolds in 1973; Olivia Newton-John musical “Xanadu” in 1980; coming-of-age flick “Stand By Me“, animated “Transformers: The Movie” and comedy “A Fine Mess” — all in 1986; Spike Lee’s romantic comedy “She’s Gotta Have It” in 1988… Hindi film “Chennai Express” opened in 2013. It was the fastest Bollywood film to earn $1 billion.

Iain Macmillan photographed The Beatles in their famous cover shot for the album “Abbey Road” in 1969 outside EMI Recording Studios in London, England… Reaching No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart: “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” by U2 in 1987 and “This Used To Be My Playground” by Madonna (from her movie “A League Of Their Own“) in 1992… legendary rap album “Straight Outta Compton” by N.W.A. was released in 1988… the original version of the single “Missing” by Everything But The Girl was released in 1994. It did not achieve commercial success until a Todd Terry remix was subsequently released fifteen months later, making “Missing” one of the iconic dance songs of the 90’s. It became the first single in Billboard magazine history to remain on its Hot 100 chart for an entire calendar year uninterrupted …  Single “Gangster’s Paradise” was released by Coolio in 1995. In was named the Billboard Song of the Year.

In 1974, Richard Nixon addressed the nation on TV that he’d resign from the office of President of the United States the following day…Sylvester Stallone and former heavyweight boxing contender Chuck Wepner settled a lawsuit out of court for an undisclosed sum in 2006. Wepner claimed he was the inspiration for the “Rocky” movies.

The United States Olympic men’s basketball team, also known as “The Dream Team“, won the gold medal in Barcelona, Spain in 1992. The team that featured Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Charles Barkley, Larry Bird and many other Hall of Famers, helped catapult the NBA’s prominence as a global entity in sport… In 2008, Beijing produced a four-hour Olympics opening ceremony considered by many to be the most spectacular Olympic opener ever staged. Directed by Chinese filmmaker Zhang Yimou, the show featured more than 15,000 performers, ranging from children to martial arts masters.

Celebrity Birthdays:
Actress Nita Talbot (“Hogan’s Heroes”) is 93; two-time Oscar winner Dustin Hoffman is 86; actress-singer Connie Stevens is 85; actor Larry Wilcox (“CHiPs”) is 76; actor Keith Carradine (“Madam Secretary”) is 74; drummer Anton Fig (“Late Show with David Letterman”) is 70; actor Donny Most (“Happy Days”) is 70; actor Harry Crosby (“Friday the 13th”) is 65; “Inside Edition” host Deborah Norville is 65; U2 guitarist David Evans aka The Edge is 62; rapper Mohammad Dewese aka Kool Moe Dee is 61; Crees lead singer Scott Stapp is 50; ‘NSYNC singer J.C. Chasez is 47; 98 Degrees singer-“DWTS” champion Drew Lachey is 47; actress Countess Vaughn (“The Parkers”) is 45; actor Michael Urie (“Ugly Betty”) is 43; actress Meagan Good (“Think Like A Man”) is 42; actress Jackie Cruz (“Orange Is the New Black”) is 39; singer-songwriter Shawn Mendes is 25.

Did You Know?
The original “Honeymooners” sketches aired on the DuMont network’s variety series “Cavalcade of Stars” with Jackie Gleason as Ralph Kramden, Art Carney as Ed Norton, Pert Kelton as wife Alice Kramden and, in one episode, Elaine Stritch as Trixie Norton. The popularity of the sketches led Gleason to rework “The Honeymooners” as a filmed half-hour series, which debuted on Oct. 1, 1955 on CBS in place of Gleason’s then variety series on the Eye net. After one season (and 39 episodes), the sketches were reverted back into the variety series on CBS. For a look, click here