The Woodstock music festival (“3 Days of Peace & Music”) was held August 15-18, 1969 on Max Yasgur’s dairy farm in Bethel, New York. A watershed moment for the 60s counterculture and a milestone in rock music history, Woodstock contained iconic performances by some of the period’s greatest artists. The festival spawned an Academy Award-winning film, a #1 three-album soundtrack and two anniversary festivals, Woodstock ’94 and Woodstock ’99.
On this day in 1939, The Wizard of Oz held its Hollywood premiere at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre. Starring Judy Garland, Ray Bolger, Jack Haley, Bert Lahr, Frank Morgan and an absolutely terrifying Margaret Hamilton, The Wizard of Oz was a commercial failure upon its initial release but has gone on to be one of the most beloved and iconic films ever made. It also inspired generations of stoners to watch the flick while listening to Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon.
Apocalypse Now was released on this day in 1979 after premiering at Cannes the previous May. A loose adaptation of Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, Apocalypse Now stars Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall and Martin Sheen, who suffered a near-fatal heart attack during filming. Warning: this clip is not for the faint of heart, but the scene is brilliant and the use of The Doors’ “The End” is perfect.
Željko Ivanek was born on this day in 1957. A venerable character actor of stage and screen, Ivanek has appeared in critically-acclaimed films and series such as Oz, 24, Donnie Brasco and Black Hawk Down. Fun fact: his contract includes a rider that the Ž in his first name has its caron properly placed in any credits sequence where his name appears.
I’m really enjoying Stephen King’s latest, Billy Summers.
Speaking of King, Chapelwaite premieres next Sunday on Epix. The series, based on King’s short story “Jerusalem’s Lot”, will star Adrien Brody, the divine Emily Hampshire and lots of lanterns.