This Week In Film History, 10.31.10

button-film-historyNovember 4, 1907: The Chicago City Council Ordinance forbids the showing of “obscene and immoral pictures” and grants police permission to ban a movie’s release.

November 4, 1948: The treatment of the mentally ill is graphically depicted in The Snake Pit, starring Olivia de Havilland.

November 3, 1956: The Wizard of Oz makes its network broadcast debut on CBS; “Cowardly Lion” Bert Lahr and a 10-year-old Liza Minnelli are the hosts.

November 6, 1958: Steve McQueen battles that man-eating goo from outer space, The Blob, in his first starring film role.

October 31, 1962: Screen divas Joan Crawford (article on the movie What ever Happened to Baby Jane) and Bette Davis’(article on Bette Davis career) feud on (and off) the screen fuels the horrific black comedy What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?

November 1, 1962: Shane star Alan Ladd is found lying in a pool of blood with a bullet wound near his heart; he’ll later tell police the self-inflicted shooting was accidental.

November 1, 1967: The popularity of screen “anti-heroes” continues with the arrival of Cool Hand Luke, starring Paul Newman as a prisoner with a “failure to communicate.”

November 1, 1968: George Romero‘s Night of the Living Dead, shot in black-and-white for $150,000, opens and sets a new, gorier tone for American horror films.

November 1, 1968: The MPAA’s self-imposed ratings system goes into effect. They are: G (General Audiences), M (Mature Audiences), R (Restricted), X (Over 18 Only).

November 1, 1975: The disfigured body of Italian director Pier Paolo Pasolini, 51, is found on a beach in Italy, the victim of an apparent homicide.

November 4, 1980: America puts its first professional actor in the White House, as Ronald Reagan is elected the 40th President of the United States.

November 2, 1990: Pioneering silent comedy producer Hal Roach, who created Our Gang and teamed Laurel and Hardy, passes away at the age of 100.

November 4, 1994: After winning acclaim at the Sundance Film Festival, Kevin Smith‘s $30,000 convenience-store comedy Clerks goes into general release.