This Week in Film History: 11/8/15

November 13, 1921: After gaining fame in The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, Italian-born leading man Rudolph Valentino mesmerizes female filmgoers as The Sheik.

November 13, 1933: Seen on-screen for less than a minute, Claude Rains makes a memorable film debut as H.G. Wells’ title villain in Universal’s The Invisible Man.

November 13, 1940: Walt Disney’s Fantasia, featuring animated sequences based on classical performances by Leopold Stokowski and The Philadelphia Orchestra, opens.

November 12, 1946: Amid controversy over its depiction of African-Americans, Disney’s mix of live-action and animation, Song of the South, opens.

November 10, 1953: Disney’s first Cinemascope cartoon, the Oscar-winning short Toot, Whistle, Plunk, and Boom, opens.

November 11, 1959: After two years of reshoots, Shadows, the gritty directorial debut of actor-turned-indie filmmaker John Cassavetes, opens.

November 14, 1964: One of the most bizarre Christmas movies ever made, Santa Claus Conquers the Martians, opens in kiddy matinees across the country.

November 8, 1966: Two years after retiring from the screen in The Killers (his first villainous role), Ronald Reagan is elected governor of California.

November 11, 1976: Universal and Disney launch proceedings against Sony for copyright infringement, hoping to halt the manufacture of its Betamax machine.

November 8, 1972: Cable TV takes a giant step when Home Box Office debuts in 350 homes in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. The first movie shown: Sometimes a Great Notion.

November 10, 1981: Shortly after his 1927 epic Napoleon is re-released to a new generation of fans, pioneering French director Abel Gance dies at the age of 92.

November 9. 1984: Horror fans are introduced to the “man of their dreams,” razor-gloved killer Freddy Krueger, in Wes Craven’s A Nightmare on Elm Street.

November 8, 1989: Actor Kenneth Branagh’s bold directorial debut, Henry V, offers an innovative adaptation of Shakespeare’s historical drama.

November 10, 2006: Screen heavy, Oscar-winner, and one-handed pushup expert Jack Palance passes away at 87.

November 10, 2010: Italian-born producer Dino DeLaurentiis, whose films included La Strada, Death Wish and 1976’s King Kong, dies in Beverly Hills at 91.