What else happened in 1955?
In the news…
*Jan. 14 – Alan Freed produces the first rock and roll concert in New York City.
*Jan. 19 – Scrabble debuts on the board game market.
*Feb. 8 – Bulganin becomes Soviet premier.
*Feb. 12 – Pres. Dwight Eisenhower sends the first US advisors to South Vietnam.
*Mar. 20 – Blackboard Jungle opens in theaters featuring the song Rock Around the Clock, thus propelling rock and roll as a musical genre.
*Apr. 5 – Winston Churchill resigns as Prime Minister of the UK.
*Apr. 15 – Ray Kroc starts the McDonald’s restaurant chain.
*Apr. 18 – Albert Einstein dies from a ruptured aortic aneurysm.
*Jul. 9 – Rock Around the Clock becomes the first rock and roll single to reach number one on the US charts.
*Jul. 17 – Disneyland opens.
*Aug. 28 – Emmett Till is killed in Mississippi.
*Sep. 10 – Gunsmoke debuts on CBS.
*Sep. 15 – Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita is published.
*Sep. 30 – James Dean is killed in an auto accident.
*Oct. 7 – Allen Ginsberg’s “Howl” is first performed.
*Dec. 1 – Rosa Parks refuses to give up her bus seat to a white man and is arrested.
*Feb. 12 – Arsenio Hall, talk show host and funny guy.
*Feb. 19 – Jeff Daniels, cool actor. See Dumb and Dumber and Something Wild.
*Feb. 21 – Kelsey Grammer, Frasier Crane.
*Feb. 23 – Howard Jones, cool British New Wave artist.
*Mar. 5 – Penn Jillette, awesome magician.
*Mar. 15 – Dee Snider, singer of Twisted Sister.
*Mar. 17 – Gary Sinise, cool actor. Check out Forrest Gump.
*Mar. 19 – Bruce Willis, cool actor. Check out The Fifth Element.
*Mar. 31 – Angus Young, lead guitarist for AC/DC. One of the most under-rated guitarists in rock.
*Apr. 6 – Michael Rooker, cool actor. Check out Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer.
*Apr. 8 – Kane Hodder, horror icon. Played Jason in several Friday the 13th movies.
*Apr. 17 – Pete Shelley, singer for The Buzzcocks.
*May 16 – Debra Winger, cool actress.
*May 17 – Bill Paxton, cool actor. Check out A Simple Plan and One False Move.
*May 18 – Chow Yun-Fat, one of the coolest actors in the world today. Awesome action hero. Check out Crouching Tiger and The Killer. Actually, check out anything he’s done with John Woo directing.
*May 30 – Topper Headon, drummer for The Clash.
*Jun. 2 – Dana Carvey, SNL alum and funny guy.
*Jun. 6 – Sandra Bernhard, extremely funny woman.
*Jun. 23 – Glenn Danzig, very buff rock star.
*Jun. 26 – Mick Jones, singer and guitarist for The Clash.
*Jul. 22 – Willem Dafoe, cool actor. Check out The Last Temptation of Christ and Shadow of the Vampire.
*Aug. 4 – Billy Bob Thornton, cool actor. Check out Sling Blade.
*Sep. 3 – Steve Jones, lead guitarist for The Sex Pistols.
*Sep. 9 – John Kricfalusi, creator of Ren and Stimpy.
*Oct. 29 – Kevin Dubrow, singer for Quiet Riot.
*Nov. 13 – Whoopi Goldberg, cool actress and very funny person.
*Nov. 30 – Billy Idol, cool British rock star.
*Dec. 15 – Paul Simonon, bass player for The Clash.
*Mar. 11 – Sir Alexander Fleming, discoverer of penicillin.
*Mar. 12 – Charlie Parker, legendary jazz saxophonist.
*Apr. 7 – Theda Bara, great silent film actress.
*Apr. 18 – Albert Einstein, physicist, Nobel Prize laureate, and one of the great minds of human history.
*May 10 – Tommy Burns, great boxer, former World Heavyweight Champion.
*Sep. 30 – James Dean, great actor and cultural icon.
*Nov. 22 – Shemp Howard, one of the Three Stooges.
In the world of movies…
The Top Grossing Films of 1955
5. The Country Girl
4. Not as a Stranger
3. (tie) Battle Cry & 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
2. Mister Roberts
1. Cinerama Holiday
Oscar Winners of 1955
Best Picture – Marty
Best Actor – Ernest Borgnine (Marty)
Best Actress – Anna Magnani (The Rose Tattoo)
Best Supp. Actor – Jack Lemmon (Mister Roberts)
Best Supp. Actress – Jo Van Fleet (East of Eden)
Best Director – Delbert Mann (Marty)
Other Films released in 1955
Bad Day at Black Rock
The Desperate Hours
Guys and Dolls
Kiss Me Deadly
Lady and the Tramp
The Man with the Golden Arm
Night and Fog
The Night of the Hunter (I highly recommend this amazing film. Wonderfully directed by Charles Laughton, it was the great actor’s only film as a director. It featured a terrifying performance by Robert Mitchum and an incredible comeback for silent film icon Lillian Gish. If you haven’t seen it, run out and rent it now.)
The Quatermass Xperiment
Rebel Without a Cause
To Catch a Thief
In the world of television…
Shows premiering in 1955
Alfred Hitchcock Presents
The Benny Hill Show
The Johnny Carson Show
The Lawrence Welk Show
The Mickey Mouse Club
Emmy Winners of 1955
Best Dramatic Series – Producers’ Showcase (NBC)
Best Actor in a Series – Phil Silvers (The Phil Silvers Show, You’ll Never Get Rich)
Best Actress in a Series – Lucille Ball (I Love Lucy)
Best Comedy Series – The Phil Silvers Show, You’ll Never Get Rich (CBS)
Best Variety Series – The Ed Sullivan Show (CBS)
In the world of books…
Great Books published in 1955
Notes of a Native Son – James Baldwin
The Body Snatchers – Jack Finney
The Quiet American – Graham Greene
The Talented Mr. Ripley – Patricia Highsmith
Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King – J.R.R. Tolkien
In the world of comics…
DC Comics publishes Detective Comics #225 in November, featuring the first appearance of Jonn J’onnz, the Martian Manhunter, arguably the first Silver Age character.
In the world of sports…
*World Series – The Brooklyn Dodgers win 4 games to 3 over the New York Yankees.
*NBA Finals – The Syracuse Nationals win 4 games to 3 over the Fort Wayne Pistons.
*Boxing – On Sep. 21, Rocky Marciano knocks out Archie Moore in the 9th round to retain his World Heavyweight Championship.
*NFL Championship – The Cleveland Browns win 38-14 over the Los Angeles Rams.
*College Football champions – The Oklahoma Sooners.
*Stanley Cup – The Detroit Red Wings win 4 games to 3 over the Montreal Canadiens.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
What else happened in 1955?