MOVIE FAMILIES

November 28 in history:

A newspaper story called it “the worst disaster in Boston’s history.”  On November 28th, 1942, a fast-moving fire swept through the Cocoanut Grove nightclub of Boston, killing nearly 500 of the estimated 1000 people in the building.  Flammable decorations apparently ignited when a busboy lit a match to find a light socket.  Jammed and locked exits were blamed for some of the loss of life.

One of the most powerful men in the history of Hollywood started his career modestly in Massachusetts on this day in 1907, when Louis B. Mayer opened his first movie theater in Haverhill.  Mayer started making movies before long, and in less than 20 years, became the head of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.  Both of his daughters married movie producers, with David O. Selznick becoming a son-in-law of Mayer.

A Hollywood family named Newman has written movie music for decades.  Famous family members include Alfred Newman, Lionel Newman…and Randy Newman, born November 28th, 1943.  Randy has won Oscars for songs from the animated movies “Toy Story 3” and “Monsters, Inc.,” and has written the popular hits “Mama Told Me Not to Come” and “Short People.”

November 28th is also the birthday of two-time Oscar host Jon Stewart (1962), best known as the former host/anchor of “The Daily Show.”

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