This Week In Film History, 11.14.10

button-film-historyNovember 19, 1924: Mystery surrounds the death of director Thomas H. Ince. Rumors suggest he was shot aboard the yacht of William Randolph Hearst.

November 18, 1928: Mickey Mouse whistles his way onto the screen in his first speaking performance, in Walt Disney’s Steamboat Willie.

November 15, 1935: The Marx Brothers’ first feature for MGM, A Night at the Opera, opens; it will prove to be their masterpiece and will break box office records across the country.

November 16, 1945: A cartoon spirit named Casper first materializes onto movie screens in Paramount’s The Friendly Ghost.

November 15, 1956: The greatest film career for a rock star gets underway when Love Me Tender, Elvis Presley‘s first film, opens in New York.

November 15, 1958: Following a swordfight with George Sanders during the filming of Solomon and Sheba, Tyrone Power has a fatal heart attack at age 44.

November 16, 1960: Less than two weeks after completion of The Misfits, Clark Gable (article), 59, dies of a heart attack; he will be buried next to Carole Lombard.

November 15, 1974: Universal Pictures’ Earthquake rattles the American movie-going public with the first use of Sensurround.

November 20, 1975: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, which producer Michael Douglas‘ father Kirk had been trying to bring to the screen for years, debuts.

November 16, 1977: With the future of Columbia resting on its release, Close Encounters of the Third Kind debuts and becomes a critical and commercial success.

November 19, 1980: Director Michael Cimino‘s $35 million western, Heaven’s Gate, becomes one of the biggest bombs in film history and sinks United Artists.

November 20, 1981: James Cagney returns to the big screen after a 20-year absence in director Milos Forman‘s Ragtime.

November 20, 1986: The epitome of Hollywood sophistication and suaveness, Cary Grant (article), dies at 82 while taking part in an Iowa film festival.

November 15, 1989: Disney’s animated feature division is revitalized with the critical and box office success of The Little Mermaid.

November 16, 1990: John Hughes and Chris ColumbusHome Alone opens and will become the season’s biggest surprise and a starmaker for youngster Macaulay Culkin.

November 17, 1995: The name is Brosnan…Pierce Brosnan, who finally becomes the new James Bond in Goldeneye.