Today in History: World Premiere of 2001: A Space Odyssey in 1968

Today in History: World Premiere of 2001: A Space Odyssey in 1968

Stanley Kubrick’s epic about human evolution, technology, and extraterrestrial life has polarized audiences and critics alike. Today, it is widely regarded as one of the greatest and most influential films ever made.

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Today in History: The Premiere of the “Blue Angel”

Today in History: The Premiere of the “Blue Angel”

89 years ago today, the German movie Der Blaue Engel (The Blue Angel) celebrated its premiere in Berlin and introduced the world to a new movie star, Marlene Dietrich. The opening was completely sold out, possibly helped by rumors that the movie may not have been allowed to be shown at all due to its disreputable plot: a disciplinarian professor falling for a cabaret singer.

Josef von Sternberg was brought in from Hollywood to be the film’s director; Emil Jannings, who had just won an Oscar, was hired to play the professor. But filling the role of cabaret singer Lola-Lola turned out to be more problematic. Sternberg wanted Metropolis star, Brigitte Helm but she was booked; Jannings preferred theater singer Lucie Mannheim but Sternberg considered her too serious. Author Heinrich Mann would have liked to have seen his girlfriend Trude Hesterberg in the role but she was not sufficiently well-known.

Enter Marlene Dietrich. Supposedly, Sternberg was immediately fascinated by this inexperienced woman from a local drama school. It seems that the young Dietrich embodied Lola-Lola, a seductress with the longest legs and the right smile. It is said that Dietrich did not even prepare a song for her first audition, telling Sternberg that she assumed she would not be seriously considered for the role. Her flippant behavior intrigued the director and because Dietrich was behaving like the film character Lola Lola, she was hired.

Nobody could have predicted the film’s enormous success. A new star was born and immediately following the triumphant premiere in Berlin, the blue angel and her director went off to pursue a career in Hollywood.

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Today in History: King Kong Premiere in 1933

Today in History: King Kong Premiere in 1933

The black and white movie marked a milestone in the history of film, especially due to Willis O’Brien’s stop-motion effects.

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Today in History: Buster Keaton died in 1966

Today in History: Buster Keaton died in 1966

53 years ago today, Hollywood actor, director, and producer Buster Keaton passed away at the age of 70 in Los Angeles, California. Keaton was best known for his comic performance in silent films during the 1920s. His films “The General” (1926) and “The Cameraman” (1928) remain among the most highly regarded films of all times.

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Today in History: Marlene Dietrich is born in 1901

Today in History: Marlene Dietrich is born in 1901

117 years ago today, Marlene Dietrich, German-born American actress and singer, was born. She became internationally famous after performance as Lola-Lola in The Blue Angel (1930), directed by Josef von Sterngerg. After signing the contract with Paramount Pictures Dietrich performed in a number of successful films, including Shanghai Express and Desire. She was one of the highest-paid actresses of the era. She died in 1992 in Paris .

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Today in History: Charlie Chaplin dies in 1977

Today in History: Charlie Chaplin dies in 1977

41 years ago today, Charlie Chaplin passed away. Sir Charles Spencer “Charlie” Chaplin was an English comic actor, filmmaker, and composer who rose to fame in the era of silent film. Chaplin became a worldwide icon through his screen persona “The Tramp” and is considered one of the most important figures in the history of the film industry. His career spanned more than 75 years, from childhood until a year before his death in 1977. Source Wikipedia.org.

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