On This Day

On This Day in Film & TV for December 15

Events in Film & TV

Film release premierFilm Premier

1939 "Gone With the Wind", drama film directed by Victor Fleming and starring Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh, premieres in Atlanta (Best Picture 1940, inflation not adjusted highest-grossing film of all time)

  • 1952 KHON TV channel 2 in Honolulu, HI (NBC) begins broadcasting
  • 1953 WJHG TV channel 7 in Panama City, FL (NBC/ABC) begins broadcasting
  • 1956 KGW TV channel 8 in Portland, OR (NBC) begins broadcasting
  • 1956 WRAL TV channel 5 in Raleigh-Durham, NC (CBS) begins broadcasting
  • 1961 Equal access rule, political parties get TV broadcasting time

Music release#1 in the Charts

1962 Vaughn Meader's "1st Family" album goes #1 & stays #1 for 12 weeks

Comedian and Musician Vaughn Meader
Comedian and Musician
Vaughn Meader
  • 1973 Pirates of Caribbean ride opens at Disneyland

Film release premierFilm Premier

1997 "Spice World" movie directed by Bob Spiers and starring girl group the Spice Girls premieres in the UK

Singer-Songwriter Mel C
Mel C
Pop Star Emma Bunton
Pop Star
Emma Bunton
Singer Geri Horner
Geri Horner

Film release premierFilm Release

2004 "Million Dollar Baby", directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Hilary Swank and Morgan Freeman is released (Best Picture 2005)

Actor and Director Clint Eastwood
Actor and Director
Clint Eastwood
Actor Morgan Freeman
Morgan Freeman
Actress Hilary Swank
Hilary Swank
  • 2011 ESPN and the NCAA extend their TV rights deal through 2023-24, giving the network worldwide multi-media rights to 24 NCAA championships for various sports; deal worth $500m

AppointmentAppointment of Interest

2017 Anita Hill is appointed to lead a Hollywood commission on sexual harassment, spearheaded by Kathleen Kennedy

Film Producer Kathleen Kennedy
Film Producer
Kathleen Kennedy
  • 2017 Pakistani teenager Ahed Tamimi filmed slapping Israeli officers during protest, arrested 4 days later

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2020 UK newspaper "The Sun" publishes recording of Tom Cruise berating his film crew for breaking COVID-19 protocols

Actor Tom Cruise
Tom Cruise

Birthdays in Film & TV

  • 1881 James Schneider, American actor (The Key to Yesterday, Keystone Kops), born in NYC, New York (d. 1967)
  • 1896 Margaret Bannerman, Canadian actress (Elopement), born in Toronto, Ontario (d. 1976)
  • 1899 Frank Vosper, British actor (The Man Who Knew Too Much, Rome Express), born in London, England (d. 1937)
  • 1912 Ray Eames, American designer and filmmaker, born in Sacramento, California (d. 1988)
  • 1918 Jeff Chandler [Ira Grossel], American actor (Broken Arrow), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 1961)
  • 1925 Kasey Rogers, American actress (Bewitched), born in Morehouse, Missouri (d. 2006)
  • 1928 Jimmy Nelson, American ventriloquist (Nestles, Farfel), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1931 Evald Schorm, Czech film director (Courage for Every Day), born in Prague, Czechoslovakia (d. 1988)
  • 1933 Tim Conway, American comedian (McHale's Navy; The Carol Burnett Show), born in Willoughby, Ohio
  • 1937 Karen Morrow, American actress (The Boy in the Plastic bubble, Ladies' Man), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1940 Nick Buoniconti, American NFL linebacker (Miami Dolphins) and sportscaster (NBC), born in Springfield, Massachusetts (d. 2019)
  • 1941 Geoffrey Davies, English actor (Doctor at Sea, Doctor on the Go), born in Leeds, England
  • 1945 Thaao Penghlis, Australian actor (Mission Impossible, Tony-Days of Our Life), born in Sydney, Australia
  • 1948 David Gwillim, English actor (Island at Top of the World), born in Plymouth, Devon, England
  • 1948 Melanie Chartoff, American actress (Fridays, Parker Lewis) and director, born in New Haven, Connecticut
  • 1948 Cassandra Harris, Australian actress (For Your Eyes Only), born in Sydney, Australia (d. 1991)
  • 1949 Don Johnson, American actor (Miami Vice, Nash Bridges), born in Flatt Creek, Missouri
  • 1954 Justin Ross, American actor (Sinatra, Chorus Line, Fan, Quick Change), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • 1957 Yuuichi Nagashima, Japanese voice actor
  • 1959 Heidi Bohay, Somerset NJ, actress (Megan-Hotel)
  • 1960 Don Franklin, actor (Seaquest 2032, Noah Dixon-The Young Riders)
  • 1961 Annie Pujol, Perpignan, French TV hostess (Roue de la Fortune)
  • 1963 Helen Slater, American actress (Supergirl, Billie Jean, Ruthless People), born in NYC, New York
  • 1966 Manos Papayiannis, Greek fashion model and actor
  • 1968 Garrett Wang, actor (Star Trek Voyager)
  • 1968 Javid Hussain, Indian film producer
  • 1970 Michael Shanks, Canadian actor and director (Stargate), born in Vancouver, British Columbia
  • 1972 Stuart Townsend, Irish actor
  • 1973 Ryu Seung-wan, South Korean actor and director
  • 1976 Elix Skipper, American professional wrestler
  • 1979 Adam Brody, American actor
  • 1979 Eric Young, Canadian professional wrestler
  • 1981 Brendan Fletcher, Canadian actor
  • 1981 Michelle Dockery, English actress (Downton Abbey), born in London, England
  • 1982 Charlie Cox, English actor
  • 1982 George O. Gore II, American actor
  • 1983 René Goguen (René Duprée), Canadian professional wrestler
  • 1985 Sheeba Reiter, American comedian and daughter of Jackie Mason
  • 1986 Snejana Onopka, Ukrainian supermodel

Person of interestRachel Brosnahan

1990 Rachel Brosnahan, American actress (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel), born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

  • 1991 Eunice Cho, American actress

Weddings in Film & TV

LoveWedding of Interest

1933 Actor Gary Cooper (32) weds actress Veronica Balfe (20) in Park Avenue, New York City

LoveWedding of Interest

1984 Singer and actress Olivia Newton-John marries 1st husband actor Matt Lattanzi

Singer and Actress Olivia Newton-John
Singer and Actress
Olivia Newton-John

LoveWedding of Interest

1984 Academy Award-winning actress Sally Field weds second husband Alan Greisman

Actress Sally Field
Sally Field

LoveWedding of Interest

1985 Actor Sylvester Stallone (39) weds "Rocky IV" actress Brigitte Nielsen (22) in Beverly Hills, California

Actor and Director Sylvester Stallone
Actor and Director
Sylvester Stallone

LoveWedding of Interest

1989 Actor and director George Clooney (28) weds actress Talia Balsam (30) in Las Vegas

LoveWedding of Interest

1990 Rocker Rod Stewart marries supermodel Rachel Hunter

Singer Rod Stewart
Rod Stewart

LoveWedding of Interest

1990 Actress Natasha Richardson (27) weds producer Robert Fox (37)

LoveWedding of Interest

1990 Academy award-winning director David Lean (82) weds interior designer Sandra Cooke (51)

Film Director David Lean
Film Director
David Lean
  • 2005 "Eastenders" actress Elaine Lordan (39) weds BBC manager Peter Manuel at Islington Town Hall in London

LoveWedding of Interest

2007 "Marchesa" designer Georgina Chapman (31) weds Miramax mogul Harvey Weinstein (55) in Connecticut, USA

Film Producer Harvey Weinstein
Film Producer
Harvey Weinstein
  • 2012 "Scrubs" actor Donald Faison (38) weds CaCee Cobb (35) in Los Angeles, California

LoveWedding of Interest

2014 "Theory of Everything" actor Eddie Redmayne (32) weds Hannah Bagshawe at Babington House in Somerset, England

Divorces in Film & TV

Broken heartDivorce of Interest

1942 Actress Mary Astor (36) divorces film editor Manuel del Campo (29) after more than 4 years of marriage

Actress Mary Astor
Mary Astor

Broken heartDivorce of Interest

2008 Pop singer Madonna (50) divorces film director Guy Ritchie (40) due to unreasonable behavior after almost 8 years of marriage

Pop Star Madonna
Pop Star
  • 2010 Nip/Tuck actor Dylan Walsh (47) divorces actress Joana Going (47) due to irreconcilable differences after 6 years of marriage

Deaths in Film & TV

Person of interestCharles Laughton

1962 Charles Laughton, English actor (Hunchback of Notre Dame), dies at 63

Person of interestWalt Disney

1966 Walt [Walter Elias] Disney, American animator and producer (co-founder of Walt Disney Co), dies of lung cancer at 65

Animator Walt Disney
Walt Disney
  • 1972 Edward Earle, Canadian actor (Charlie Chan-Meeting at Midnight), dies at 90
  • 1974 Anatole Litvak, Russian-born American film director, writer and producer (Mayerling, Anastasia, The Snake Pit), dies at 72
  • 1978 Chill Wills, American actor (Frontier Circus, Rounders), dies at 75
  • 1979 Bern Hoffman, actor (Major Dell Conway), dies at 66
  • 1984 Jan Peerce [Jacob Pincus Perelmuth], American tenor (NBC Symphony, 1938-55; NY Metropolitan Opera, 1941-67; "Bluebird of Happiness"), dies at 80
  • 1984 Lennard Pearce, British actor (Only Fools and Horses....), dies of a heart attack at 69
  • 1989 Arnold Moss, American actor (Loves of Carmen, Kim, Quebec, Viva Zapata), dies at 79
  • 1989 Edward Underdown, British actor (Beat the Devil, Thunderball), dies at 81
  • 1990 Betty Warren actress (Passport to Pimlico), dies
  • 1990 Jean Paige, actress (Capt Blood, Black Beauty), dies
  • 1991 Ray Smith, British actor (And Then You Die), dies at 55
  • 1995 Charles Fletcher, British pioneering physician and TV presenter (wrote the 1st report into the dangers of smoking), dies at 84
  • 2001 Russ Haas, American professional wrestler, dies of heart attack at 27
  • 2006 Henny Alma [Hendrika den Broek], Dutch actress (Soldier of Orange), dies at 83
  • 2007 John Berg, American actor (Star Trek: Nemesis), takes his own life at 58
  • 2010 Blake Edwards, American writer and director (10, SOB, Breakfast at Tiffany's), dies at 88

Person of interestJoan Fontaine

2013 Joan Fontaine, British-American actress, dies of natural causes at 96

Actress Joan Fontaine
Joan Fontaine
  • 2015 Ken Pogue, Canadian actor (Adderly, Katts and Dog), dies of cancer at 81
  • 2017 Heinz Wolff, German-born British scientist and TV/ radio presenter (BBC series "The Great Egg Race"), dies from heart failure at 89