Thursday, October 6, 2011

Today in Pop Culture History: Movies, Talkies, the Can-can and La Liz

6 October 1989: Bette Davis died in France at the age of 81. She won two Academy Awards and was nominated for eight, including a nomination for her performance in All About Eve where she uttered the famous line, "Fasten your seatbelts . . . it's gonna be a bumpy night." She was known for, as she put it, "bitch roles," and her epitaph pretty awesomely reads "She did it the hard way." Kim Carnes would capitalize on Davis's most distinctive feature in her 1981 hit "Bette Davis Eyes." And yes, that song will now be stuck in your head for the rest of the day.

6 October 1847: Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre was published. Its irresistible blend of goth and romance has spawned literally dozens of adaptations on stage and screen, including one just last year starring yummy Michael Fassbender.

6 October 1889: Thomas Edison shows his first motion picture. Thanks for taking some time out of your busy inventing schedule to create the medium that inspires this blog, Tom!

6 October 1889: The Moulin Rouge in Paris opens its doors. Its risque dancers inspired the popular culture of its time, including a series of paintings by Henri Toulouse Lautrec, and a little over a century later continued to provide raw material for another colorful and theatrical artist, Baz Luhrmann.

God, I love that scene.

6 October 1927: Another milestone in film came today with the opening of The Jazz Singer, the first motion picture with sound! And not the first nor the last motion picture with toxic racism! The film's legacy includes not only technique but story. The movie was remade three times and referenced in Singin' in the Rain, and, my personal favorite, the Simpsons episode "Like Father Like Clown."

Whatever She Does is Pop Culture History
6 October 1991: Elizabeth Taylor married Larry Fortensky at the Michael Jackson's estate. It was Liz's eighth wedding, not that EVERYBODY wasn't counting. Whatever. She's the only one who doesn't look hopelessly 80s and/or terrifying.

No comments:

Post a Comment