On This Day

Year 1927 in Film & Television

Events in Film & TV

  • Jan 5 Fox Studios exhibits Movietone
  • Jan 10 Fritz Lang's silent film "Metropolis" premieres in Berlin
  • Jan 11 Royale Theater (Golden, CBS Radio Playhouse) opens at 242 W 45th NYC
  • Jan 11 Louis B. Mayer head of film studio MGM announces creation of Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

Film release premierFilm Release

Jan 24 Alfred Hitchcock releases his first film as director - The Pleasure Garden, in England

Music releaseTheater Premiere

Jan 26 Maxwell Anderson's play "Saturday's Children" premieres in New York City

Playwright and Dramatist Maxwell Anderson
Playwright and Dramatist
Maxwell Anderson
  • Feb 5 "The General", American silent film directed by Buster Keaton and Clyde Bruckman, starring Al Boasberg, premieres in New York City

Film release premierFilm Release

Feb 15 Silent film "It" is released in the US starring Clara Bow

Silent Screen Actress Clara Bow
Silent Screen Actress
Clara Bow

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Feb 16 Noël Coward's "Marquise" premieres in London

Playwright, Director and Singer Noël Coward
Playwright, Director and Singer
Noël Coward

Music releaseMusic Recording

Apr 5 Johnny Weissmuller set records in 100 & 200 m free style

Swimmer and Actor Johnny Weissmuller
Swimmer and Actor
Johnny Weissmuller

Millions Come Up to See Mae WestMillions Come Up to See Mae West

Apr 19 Actress Mae West found guilty of “obscenity and corrupting the morals of youth” in a New York stage play entitled "Sex". She is sentenced to 10 days in prison and fined $500, the resulting publicity launches her Hollywood career.

Read Article
Mae West at the height of her career
Mae West at the height of her career
Read Article
  • May 18 Grauman's Chinese Theater opens in Hollywood, California
  • Jun 5 Johnny Weissmuller sets 100-yard & 200-yard free-style swim record
  • Aug 1 Earliest date for a film to be considered for the Academy Awards
  • Aug 12 "Wings", one of only two silent films - the other being The Artist in 2011 - to win an Oscar for best picture, opens starring Clara Bow (Outstanding Picture 1929)
  • Sep 7 Philo Farnsworth demonstrates the first use of his electronic television in San Francisco

Film release premierFilm Release

Sep 23 "Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans", directed by F. W. Murnau, starring George O'Brien and Janet Gaynor, is released (Academy Awards Unique and Artistic Picture 1927)

Actress Janet Gaynor
Actress
Janet Gaynor

Jazz Singer Sounds Death Knell for Silent MoviesJazz Singer Sounds Death Knell for Silent Movies

Oct 6 "The Jazz Singer", directed by Alan Crosland, starring Al Jolson and May McAvoy, released, 1st film with a soundtrack (Honorary Academy Award 1928)

Read Article
An advertising  poster for The Jazz Singer distributed by Warner Brothers
An advertising poster for The Jazz Singer distributed by Warner Brothers
Read Article

Film release premierFilm Release

Oct 8 "The Second Hundred Years" silent short film released starring Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy - 1st Laurel and Hardy film with them appearing as a team

Comic Actor Oliver Hardy
Comic Actor
Oliver Hardy
Comedian and Actor Stan Laurel
Comedian and Actor
Stan Laurel

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 27 Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II's "Show Boat" premieres in New York City

Broadway Composer Jerome Kern
Broadway Composer
Jerome Kern

Birthdays in Film & TV

  • Jan 1 Patricia "Pat" Heywood, Scottish actress (10 Rillington Place, Lucky Feller), born in Gretna Green, Scotland
  • Jan 4 Barbara Rush, American actress (Marsha-Peyton Place, It Came From Outer Space, Flamingo Road), born in Denver, Colorado
  • Jan 10 Gisele MacKenzie [LaFlèche], Canadian singer and actress (Your Hit Parade), born in Winnipeg, Manitoba (d. 2003)
  • Jan 10 Lee Philips, American actor and director (Peyton Place, Ellery Queen), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 1999)
  • Jan 10 Basu Chatterjee, Indian film director (Rajanigandha, Chhoti Si Baat), born in Ajmer, Merwara, British India (d. 2020)
  • Jan 17 Eartha Kitt, American singer (Santa Baby), dancer, activist, and actress (Batman - "Catwoman"), born in North, South Carolina (d. 2008)
  • Jan 17 Michael Herford Wooller, TV/film producer
  • Jan 25 Gregg Palmer [Palmer Edvind Lee], American actor (Scream, To Hell & Back), born in San Francisco, California (d. 2015)
  • Jan 26 William Redfield, American actor (Jimmy Hughes Rookie Cop, Marriage), born in NYC, New York (d. 1976)
  • Jan 27 Doretta Morrow, American actress (Because You're Mine), born in NYC, New York (d. 1968)
  • Jan 27 Michael Craig [Gregson], American actor (Escape 2000, Vault of Horror), born in Poona, British India
  • Jan 27 Nancy Dickerson, pioneering American radio and TV journalist (NBC, CBS), born in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin (d. 1997)
  • Feb 3 Kenneth Anger, American Underground Filmmaker
  • Feb 5 Robert Brown, American actor (Here Come the Brides, Primus), born in Trenton, New Jersey
  • Feb 5 Val Dufour, American actor (Eugenie Grandet, Another World), born in New Orleans, Louisiana (d. 2000)
  • Feb 7 Juliette Gréco, French singer (Sous le ciel de Paris) and actress, born in Montpellier, France (d. 2020) [1]
  • Feb 7 Laurence "Laurie" Johnson, British film and television score composer (Dr. Strangelove; The Avengers), born in Hampstead, England
  • Feb 12 Anne Gillis [Alma Conner], American actress (Faline-Bambi, Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Little Men), born in Little Rock, Arkansas (d. 2018)
  • Feb 14 Lois Maxwell [Hooker], Canadian actress (Goldfinger, Dr. No, Miss Moneypenny), born in Kitchener, Ontario (d. 2007)
  • Feb 15 Harvey Korman, American actor (The Carol Burnett Show, Blazing Saddles), born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 2008)
  • Feb 16 June Brown, British actress (EastEnders, Sitting Target), born in Needham Market, Suffolk

Person of interestSidney Poitier

Feb 20 Sidney Poitier, Bahamian-American actor, first black actor to win Oscar for Best Actor ('Lillies in the Field' - 1963), born in Miami, Florida

  • Feb 21 Erma Bombeck, American humorist (The Grass is Always Greener over the Septic Tank), born in Dayton, Ohio (d. 1996)
  • Feb 22 Donald May, American actor (Adam-Edge of Night, Colt .45), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Feb 22 Guy Mitchell [Albert George Cernik], American singer and actor (Red Garters, 3 Redheads from Seattle), born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 1999)
  • Feb 24 Emmanuelle Riva, French actress (Hiroshima Mon Amour), born in Alsace-Lorraine (d. 2017)
  • Feb 25 Richard "Dick" Jones, American actor ("Pinocchio "- Pinocchio, The Frontiersman), born in Snyder, Texas (d. 2014)
  • Feb 25 Jane Nigh, American actress (Lorelei-Big Town, Blue Blood, Rawhide), born in Hollywood, California (d. 1993)
  • Feb 27 Doralyn "Lynn" Cartwright, American character actress (A League of Their Own), born in McAlester, Oklahoma (d. 2004)
  • Mar 1 Harry Belafonte, Jamaican-American calypso singer ("Banana Boat Song"; actor (Buck & the Preacher), and human rights activist , born in Harlem, New York
  • Mar 4 Thayer David, American actor (Eiger Sanction, Rocky, Nero Wolfe, Savages), born in Medford, Massachusetts (d. 1978)
  • Mar 5 John "Jack" Cassidy, American singer and actor (Oscar-He & She, The Eiger Sanction), born in Richmond Hill, Virginia (d. 1976)
  • Mar 6 William J Bell, soap opera creator (Young & Restless), born in Chicago, Illinois

Person of interestGabriel García Márquez

Mar 6 Gabriel García Márquez, Colombian novelist, short-story writer, screenwriter and journalist (1982 Nobel Prize in Literature), born in Aracataca, Colombia (d. 2014)

Colombian Writer Gabriel García Márquez
Colombian Writer
Gabriel García Márquez
  • Mar 7 James Broderick, American actor and director (Dog Day Afternoon, Family), born in Charlestown, New Hampshire (d. 1982)
  • Mar 10 Claude Laydu, Belgian-born Swiss actor (Diary of a Country Priest), born in Brussels, Belgium (d. 2011)
  • Mar 10 Donn Trenner, orchestra leader (ABC's Nightlife), born in New Haven, Connecticut
  • Mar 10 Barbara Sinatra, American model and philanthropist, born in Bosworth, Missouri (d. 2017)
  • Mar 16 Karlheinz Boehm, Austrian actor (Face of Fear, Peeping Tom, Unnatural), born in Darmstadt, Austria (d. 2014)
  • Mar 16 Olga San Juan, American actress, dancer and comedian (Variety Girl, 1 Touch of Venus), born in NYC, New York (d. 2009)
  • Mar 17 Patrick Allen, British actor (Roman Holiday, Dial "M" for Murder), born in Nyasaland, Africa (d. 2006)
  • Mar 30 Peter Marshall, TV game show host (Hollywood Squares), born in Huntington, West Virginia
  • Mar 31 William Daniels, American actor (Dr Mark Craig-St Elsewhere, 1776), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • Apr 13 Maurice Ronet, French film actor, director, and writer (Frantic, Sphinx, Circle of Love), born in Nice, France (d. 1983)
  • Apr 14 Dany Robin, French actress (Follow the Boys, Topaz, Jupiter, Julietta), born in Clamart, France (d. 1995)
  • Apr 16 Edie Adams [Edith Enke], American businesswoman, singer, actress and comedian (Murial Cigar), born in Kingston, Pennsylvania (d. 2008)
  • Apr 16 Peter Mark Richman, American actor (Andrew-Dynasty), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Apr 21 Gerald Flood, British actor (Doctor Who, Patton), born in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England (d. 1989)
  • Apr 24 Pasqualino de Santis, Italian cinematographer, born in Fondi, Latina, Italy (d. 1996)
  • Apr 26 Jack Douglas, English comedian (My Brother Was an Only Child, Jack Paar Show), born in Newcastle upon Tyne, England (d. 1989)
  • May 1 Roland Verhavert, Flemish screenwriter (Sea Gulls Die in the Harbor)
  • May 2 Raymond "Ray" Barrett, Australian actor (The Troubleshooters, Gillette Summer Sports Reel), born in Brisbane, Queensland (d. 2009)
  • May 4 Owen "Terry" Scott, British actor and comedian (Terry and June, Carry On Films), born in Watford, Hertfordshire (d. 1994)
  • May 5 Patricia "Pat" Carroll, American comedienne and actress (Ursula- The Little Mermaid, Make Room for Daddy), born in Shreveport, Louisiana
  • May 6 Ettore Manni, Italian actor (Street People, Divine Nymph, Fatal Desire, Heroes in Hell), born in Rome, Italy (d. 1979)
  • May 7 Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, German-American novelist and screenwriter, born in Cologne, Germany (d. 2013)
  • May 8 Murray Lerner, American documentary and experimental film director and producer (Secrets of the Reef), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 2017)
  • May 11 Mort Sahl, comedian/political satirist/beatnik (Big Party), born in Montreal, Quebec
  • May 13 Herbert Ross, director/choreographer (Footloose)
  • May 20 David Hedison, American actor (Colbys, Voyage to Bottom of Sea), born in Providence, Rhode Island
  • May 21 Kay Kendall [Justine McCarthy], British actress (Genevieve, The Constant Husband, Les Girls), born in Withernsea, East Riding of Yorkshire (d. 1959)
  • May 22 Michael Constantine, American actor (Room 222, Don't Drink the Water), born in Reading, Pennsylvania
  • May 22 Phil Tucker, American film director (Robot Monster), born in Kansas City, Missouri (d. 1985)
  • May 26 Jacques Bergerac, French actor (Gigi, Les Girls, Thunder in Sun) and business executive (Revlon), born in Biarritz, Pyrénées-Atlantiques, France (d. 2014)
  • May 30 Norman "Clint" Walker, American actor (Kodiak, Cheyenne, Dirty Dozen), born in Hartford, Illinois
  • May 30 Dick Noel, American TV host (It's a Small Wonder), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • Jun 2 W. Watts Biggers, American novelist and animator, (d. 2013)
  • Jun 4 Geoffrey Palmer, British actor (A Fish Called Wanda, The Madness of King George, Butterflies, Smacks & Thistle), born in London, England (d. 2020)
  • Jun 4 Priscilla Morrill, American actress (Edie Grant-Mary Tyler Moore), born in Medford, Massachusetts (d. 1994)

Person of interestJerry Stiller

Jun 8 Jerry Stiller, American comedian (Frank Constanza-Seinfeld, Stiller & Meara), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 2020)

Comedian Jerry Stiller
Comedian
Jerry Stiller
  • Jun 10 Michael Walsh, major-general/director (Overseas Relations)
  • Jun 15 Ibn-e-Insha, Pakistani humourist and Urdu poet (d. 1978)
  • Jun 18 Paul Eddington, British actor (Devil Rides Out, Devil's Bride), born in Paddington, London (d. 1995)
  • Jun 21 Carl Burton Stokes, African American politician (51st mayor of Cleveland) and TV newscaster, born in Cleveland, Ohio (d. 1996)
  • Jun 22 Ann Petersen, Belgian actress (Home Sweet Home, Pauline & Paulette), born in Wuustwezel, Belgium (d. 2003)
  • Jun 23 Bob Fosse, choreographer/director (Cabaret, Damn Yankees), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Jun 27 Bob Keeshan, American actor (Captain Kangaroo), born in Lynbrook, New York (d. 2004)
  • Jun 27 Robert Casey, American actor (Henry-Aldrich Family Show, What to Do on a Date), born in Rochester, New York
  • Jun 30 Harvey Vernon [Chet Smith], American actor (Teen Wolf, Jasper-Carter Country), born in Flint, Michigan (d. 1996)
  • Jun 30 James Goldman, American screenwriter and playwright (The Lion in Winter, They Might Be Giants), born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 1998)
  • Jul 2 Brock Peters [George Fisher], American actor and singer (Carmen Jones, To Kill a Mockingbird), born in NYC, New York (d. 2005)
  • Jul 2 Ruth Berghaus, choreographer/director
  • Jul 3 Ken Russell, British film director (Tommy, Altered States, Gothic), born in Southampton, Hampshire, England (d. 2011)
  • Jul 4 Luigina "Gina" Lollobrigida, Italian actress, photojournalist and sculptor (Trapeze, Falcon Crest), born in Subiaco, Italy
  • Jul 5 Beverly Tyler, American singer and actress (Fireball, The Youngest Profession, Big Town), born in Scranton, Pennsylvania (d. 2005)

Person of interestJanet Leigh

Jul 6 Janet Leigh [Jeanetta Morrison], American actress (Psycho), born in Merced, California (d. 2004)

Actress Janet Leigh
Actress
Janet Leigh
  • Jul 6 Pat Paulsen, American comedian (Smothers Brothers Show) and presidential candidate, born in South Bend, Washington (d. 1997)
  • Jul 6 Susan Cabot, American actress (Sorority Girl, Carnival Rock), born in Boston, Massachusetts (d. 1986)
  • Jul 9 Ed Ames [Edmund Dantes Urick], American popular singer and actor (Ames Brothers, My Cup Runneth Over), born in Malden, Massachusetts
  • Jul 10 William Smithers, American actor (Witness, Peyton Place, Attack!), born in Richmond, Virginia
  • Jul 14 John William Chancellor, news anchor (NBC, VOA), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Jul 15 Carmen Zapata, American actress (Hagen, Viva Valdez, Man & the City), born in NYC, New York (d. 2014)
  • Jul 25 Daniel Ceccaldi, French actor (Stolen Kisses, Bed and Board), born in Meaux, Seine-et-Marne, France (d. 2003)
  • Jul 30 Richard Johnson, British stage and screen actor and producer (Never So Few, Restless, Beyond the Door), born in Upminster (d. 2015)
  • Jul 30 Victor Wong [Yee Keung Victor Wong], American actor (Big Trouble in Little China), born in San Francisco, California (d. 2001)
  • Aug 7 Carl Switzer, American actor (Our Gang, Beginner's Luck, General Spanky), born in Paris, Illinois (d. 1959)
  • Aug 9 Robert Shaw, British actor, novelist, and playwright (Deep, Jaws, Sting, Black Sunday), born in Westhoughton, Lancashire (d. 1978)
  • Aug 10 Vernon Washington, American actor (Roots, The Last Starfighter, Friday the 13th: A New Beginning), born in Hartford, Connecticut (d. 1988)
  • Aug 14 Frank Cvitanovich, Canadian filmmaker, born in Vancouver (d. 1995)
  • Aug 17 Robert Moore, American director and actor (Murder by Death, Marshall-Diana), born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 1984)

Weddings in Film & TV


LoveWedding of Interest

May 30 Academy Award-winning actor Fredric March (29) marries actress Florence Eldridge


Divorces in Film & TV


Broken heartDivorce of Interest

Aug 22 Actor Charlie Chaplin divorces his 2nd wife Lita Grey after 3 years of marriage in the largest divorce settlement at the time (US$600,000, plus trusts for children)

Comedian, Actor and Filmmaker Charlie Chaplin
Comedian, Actor and Filmmaker
Charlie Chaplin
Actress Lita Grey
Actress
Lita Grey

Deaths in Film & TV

  • Jun 14 Johanna Barbiers, Dutch actress (Voddenraper of Paris), dies at 79
  • Jul 9 John Drew Jr., American Shakespearean actor (The Big Bonanza), dies at 73
  • Sep 20 George Nichols, American director and actor (His Favorite Pastime, Star Boarder), dies at 62 or 63