July 3, 1905: The long tradition of cinematic canine heroes begins in England with the debut of the seven-minute melodrama Rescued by Rover.
June 29, 1933: The very day Warner Bros. signs him to appear in his first feature in a decade, scandal-plagued comic, Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle, 46, dies of a heart attack.
July 3, 1947: Elia Kazan, Cheryl Crawford and Bob Lewis open the Actors Studio in New York to teach Konstantin Stanislavsky’s “Method” style of acting.
June 28, 1961: The search is on for the perfect James Bond, after United Artists announces it will produce seven films based on Ian Fleming’s superspy.
July 3, 1965: A veteran performer in more than 80 movies–Roy Rogers’ beloved golden palomino, Trigger–dies of old age at 33.
June 29, 1967: Screen sex kitten Jayne Mansfield, 44, is killed in a car accident on a Louisiana highway. The sight of her wig nearby will stir up “beheading” rumors.
July 2, 1973: Betty Grable, the favorite actress and pin-up of many American G.I.s during World War II, dies of lung cancer at the age of 56.
July 2, 1980: Surely this can’t be the day the hit “disaster movie” spoof Airplane! opened? It is, and don’t call me Shirley.
June 30, 1983: Spanish-born director and master of cinematic surrealism Luis Buñuel dies in Mexico at 83.
July 1, 1984: The MPAA ratings chart expands as the new “PG13” category is added. The first film released with the rating: Red Dawn.
July 3, 1985: ’80s teen Michael J. Fox goes “back in time” to 1955 when the hit sci-fi/comedy Back to the Future opens.
June 30, 1989: Spike Lee’s controversial look at race relations in a Brooklyn pizza parlor, Do the Right Thing, opens.
July 3, 1991: The most expensive movie to date, James Cameron’s Terminator 2: Judgment Day, is released. Star Arnold Schwarzenegger’s salary: a reported $15 million.
July 3, 1993: “Curly Joe” DeRita, the last survivor among the six members of The Three Stooges, passes away at 83.
July 3, 1996: Debuting just in time for its namesake holiday, the sci-fi actioner Independence Day earns over $100 million in its opening week.
July 1, 1997: Robert Mitchum, sleepy-eyed tough guy and leading man from the ’40s through the ’90s, dies at age 79.
July 2, 1997: The affable “Everyman” star of It’s a Wonderful Life, The Philadelphia Story, Vertigo and more, James Stewart, dies at age 89.
June 28, 2001: Cancer claims the life of two-time Academy Award-winner Jack Lemmon, 76.
June 29, 2003: Four-time Academy Award-winning actress Katharine Hepburn passes away at the age of 96.
July 1, 2004: Marlon Brando, Oscar-winning star of On the Waterfront and The Godfather, dies at age 80.
July 3, 2007: Based on the popular toy line and cartoon, Michael Bay’s Transformers debuts with a $70 million opening weekend.