1969: Herbie Drives into Town
Walt Disney’s The Love Bug movie came to theaters with a limited release on Christmas Eve in 1968, but the Volkswagen film got its major release on this day in 1969. In fact, Disney wasn’t even sure what type of car would be starring in film when he first began working on it back in the early 60’s. Volkswagen wouldn’t even permit Disney to use its name or logo in the film. And despite the film’s title, the car is never referred to as a bug. The story involves Jim Douglas, a washed up car racer being reduced to race in demolition derby races. After purchasing the car, Douglas notices that “Herbie” (a name his roommate came up with) has a mind of his own. The film starred Dean Jones, Michele Lee, David Thomlinson and Buddy Hackett. Not only did The Love Bug get fairly decent reviews, it was the second top grossing movie of 1969 (Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid was #1), it spawned four sequels and even a limited TV series.
2012: The Printed Encyclopedia Britannica is No More
The first printed edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica was published between 1768 and 1771 in Edinburgh as the “Encyclopedia Britannica, or, A Dictionary of Arts and Sciences compiled upon a New Plan.” On this day in 2012, Britannica’s president, Jorge Cauz, announced that it would not produce any new print editions and that the 2010 15th edition would be the last. Today the company only focuses on the online edition and other educational tools
Uncle Sam first appeared on the pages of New York Lantern Weekly.
At the age of 77, Pablo Picasso married his model who was 37.
Starring William Shatner, T.J. Hooker debuted on this day.
- 1921: Al Jaffee (cartoonist)
- 1950: William H. Macy (actor)
- 1956: Dana Delany (actress)
- 1960: Joe Ranft (animator)
- 1985: Emile Hirsch (actor)
I write about pop culture, arts and entertainment in the greater Seattle area.