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Today in History: Wednesday, June 2, 2021


Millions worldwide tuned in to see the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in the United Kingdom in 1953. It was the first major world event to be broadcast internationally on television…ABC half-hour soap opera “Peyton Place,” based on the Grace Metalious book and the 1957 Lana Turner movie, ended its five season run in 1969. It originally featured Mia Farrow…In 1981, Barbara Walters made the news by asking legendary Katharine Hepburn what kind of tree she would be. (“I hope I am not an elm. I would like to be an oak tree. That’s very strong, very pretty,” she laughably responded)…The legendary Norman Lear returned to CBS as creator and producer of the sitcom “Sunday Dinner” starring Robert Loggia and Teri Hatcher which premiered in 1991. It only lasted 6 episodes…”Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” concluded in first-run syndication in 1999. It aired for seven seasons…Crime drama “The Wire,” created by David Simon and starring Idris Elba and Dominic West debuted on HBO in 2002. It aired for 5 seasons…Also in 2002, the start of Comedy Central’s “Crank Yankers” co-created by Adam Carolla and Jimmy Kimmel. Its original run lasted three seasons. Its revival has been currently airing since September 2019…NBC first entered the romance reality competition genre in the 21st century with “For Love or Money” which debuted in 2003… Contestant Ken Jennings began his 74-game winning streak on syndicated game show “Jeopardy!,” earning $2,520,700 in total, in 2004…Three short-lived series concluded: 1) CBS drama “Whiz Kids” in 1984; 2) Fox sci-fi drama “Space: Above and Beyond” in 1996; and 3) CBS drama “The Education of Max Bickford” in 2002…“Port Charles”, the spin-off of “General Hospital”, debuted on ABC daytime in 1997. It starred several notables from its parent soap opera: Lynn Herring, Jon Lindstrom, Kin Shriner and Marie Wilson. The daytime drama lasted six years…The Fox Family Network (now known as Freeform) debuted two series in 2001: the Olsen twins sitcom “So Little Time” (which only lasted one season) and animated “Braceface”, featuring the voice of Alicia Silverstone…The fifth season of reality competition “The Mole” premiered on ABC in 2008. After two celebrity editions in 2003 and 2004, it returned to featuring civilian contestants. Jon Kelley hosted…Family sitcom “According to Jim” starring Jim Belushi concluded its eight-season run on ABC in 2009. It marked the third consecutive hit series for Courtney Thorne-Smith, following “Melrose Place” and “Ally McBeal”“Are We There Yet?”, the TV adaptation of the 2005 feature film of the same name, debuted on TBS in 2010. It starred Terry Crews and Essence Atkins. The family comedy ran for 100 episodes across three seasons…Romantic anthology “Love Bites” premiered on NBC in 2011. Eight episodes aired…ABC Family sci-fi drama “Stitchers” debuted in 2015. It ran for 31 episodes across three condensed seasons…Comedy “Community” concluded its six-season run in 2015. After five seasons on NBC, the Dan Harmon-created series that starred Joel McHale, Danny Pudi, Yvette Nicole Brown, Alison Brie, Donald Glover and Ken Jeong moved to the streamer Yahoo Screen for its sixth – and final – season…Two notable but short-lived dramas premiered in 2019: supernatural “NOS4A2” on AMC and critically-acclaimed “Perpetual Grace, LTD” on EPIX.

Our Gang theatrical short “Crazy House” was released in theaters in 1928. It was the 76th film in the series and marked the first appearance by Mary Ann Jackson“Dead Poet’s Society, starring Robin Williams, opened in theaters in 1989…”The Bridges of Madison County,” starring Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep premiered in theaters in 1995. Eastwood turned 90 years of age on Sunday…Martin Lawrence scored a box office hit with the cross-dressing detective comedy flick “Big Momma’s House” released to theaters in 2000…“Wonder Woman,” directed by Patty Jenkins, was released in 2017. It earned over $100 million in North American in its opening weekend, which is a domestic record for a female director.

Ray Charles’ cover “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You” from his crossover album “Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music” hit #1 on Billboard in 1962…Donna Summer scored her second No. 1 hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart with “Hot Stuff” in 1979…Whitney Houston’s second studio album “Whitney“, featuring the hits “I Wanna Dance With Somebody”, “So Emotional” and “Where Do Broken Hearts Go”, was released in 1987…Five of the most popular female music artists at the turn of the century — Christina AguileraLil’ KimMyaPink and Missy Elliott — performed on the remake of the 70’s hit “Lady Marmalade” for the movie musical “Moulin Rouge“. It reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2001.

The New York Yankees famously sat the then-struggling Wally Pipp for Lou Gehrig at first base in 1925. Gehrig earned the starting role as first baseman and played in 2,130 consecutive games across 14 seasons…In 1935, at the age of 40, George Herman “Babe” Ruth announced his retirement from Major League Baseball. Throughout his 22-season career, he hit 714 home runs and 2,213 runs batted in. Ruth was among the first five players ever inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame and is considered one of the greatest sports icons in American history.

Celebrity Birthdays:
Actress Sally Kellerman (“M*A*S*H”) is 84; actor Ron Ely (“Tarzan”) is 83; actor Stacy Keach is 80; Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts is 80; Actor-director Charles Haid (“Hill Street Blues”) is 78. Singer Chubby Tavares of Tavares is 77; “Leave it to Beaver” star Jerry Mathers is 73; actress Joanna Gleason is 71; actor Dennis Haysbert (“24″) is 67; “Saturday Night Live’s” Dana Carvey is 66; actor Gary Grimes (“Summer of 42”) is also 66; TV producer and talk show host Andy Cohen is 53; “Prison Break” star Wentworth Miller is 49; “Let’s Make a Deal” host Wayne Brady is also 49; actor Zachary Quinto (“Star Trek” films, “Heroes”) is 44; U.S. soccer star Abby Wambach is 41; actress Nikki Cox (“Unhappily Ever After”) is 43; actor Justin Long (“Accepted,” ″Dodgeball”) is 43; actress Morena Baccarin (“Gotham,” ″Homeland”) is 42; actress Nora Lum aka Awkwafina (“Crazy Rich Asians”) is 33.

-Did You Know?:
Mia Farrow, who never expected “Peyton Place” to be a success, tried to get out of her contact in the first season. It wasn’t until the third season, when she married Frank Sinatra, that ABC agreed to release her. Farrow’s character of Allison Mackenzie was written out by simply having her run away from town and never be heard from again.