On this day 60 years ago, in 1955, the DiISNEYLAND theme park opened in Anaheim, California. More than 1 million people visited the park in its first seven weeks.
The first drive-in movie theater opened on this day in 1933. A young man named Richard Hollingshead Jr. was a sales manager at his dad's auto parts store in Camden, New Jersey. In his spare time, he dreamed of creating something that would bring a little fun to the tough daily life of the Depression era. He was also thinking about his mother, who was a little bit overweight and wasn't comfortable in movie theater seats.

Hollingshead applied for a patent in May of 1933. With an initial investment of $30,000, he opened his first theater just three weeks later, on Crescent Boulevard in Camden. Six hundred people turned out on opening night. The cost was 25 cents per car, and 25 cents per person after that, with a cap at one dollar. He called it a "Park-In" theater, and his early ad campaigns targeted families. He said, "The whole family is welcome, regardless of how noisy the children are."

Drive-ins hit their peak in popularity in the 1950s and early 1960s. At one point, there were almost 5,000 drive-in theaters in the United States. Now there are fewer than 500 today.

The LIttle Prince

John Denver gets a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Friday's unveiling coincided with the opening of a Hollywood exhibition of photos called "Sweet Sweet Life: The Photographic Works of John Denver." The musician's photos will be on display at Hollywood's Substrate Gallery for the next month.
It's the birthday of puppeteer Jim Henson, known as "The Father of Dreams," born in Greenville, Mississippi (1936). He's the creator of the characters on Sesame Street, including Big Bird and Cookie Monster, as well as Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, and the rest of the Muppets  a name he made by combining the words "marionettes" and "puppets."
Jim Henson said: "Follow your enthusiasm. It's something I've always believed in. Find those parts of your life you enjoy the most. Do what you enjoy doing."

What's up, Doc?

It was on this day in 1940 that Bugs Bunny made his official debut in an animated film short called A Wild Hare. It was the first cartoon in which Bugs Bunny acted like himself. The storyline of the cartoon involved Elmer Fudd hunting rabbits, only to have Bugs thwart him at every turn. Bugs Bunny's first line in the cartoon, when he meets Elmer Fudd, is, "What's up, doc?" It was a phrase that one of the writers remembered people saying where he grew up in Texas. It got such a big laugh in the theaters that the writers decided to make it a catchphrase.

A Long, Long Time Ago...

After months of silence, Lucasfilm finally announced the main cast of the forthcoming Star Wars revival, Episode VII, in one explosive sentence Tuesday.

Star Wars Episode VII Cast Announced

Today You, Tomorrow Me

Today You, Tomorrow Me from Ben Pettis on Vimeo.

Who will fill those big shoes?

Clown Shortage
"Membership at the World Clown Association, the country's largest trade group for clowns, has dropped from about 3,500 to 2,500 since 2004. 'The challenge is getting younger people involved in clowning,' said Association President Deanna (Dee Dee) Hartmier, who said most of her members are over 40."
John Henson, son of famed Muppet creator Jim Henson, has died.

Croissant de Triomphe


Hobbit Tickets: Acquired!

Singin' in the Rain

Today would have been Gene Kelly's 100th birthday. Here is NPR's remembrance/tribute.

Bert or Ernie? Beaker or Animal? Elmo or Oscar?

Which Muppet are you?
Today marks the 79th anniversary of the first drive-in movie theater.
Here is Google's doodle for the occasion.

The Duel from The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

It's the 75th birthday of Muppets creator Jim Henson, born James Maury Henson in Greenville, Mississippi (1936).
Henson started his puppeteering career when he was in high school, performing for a children's show on a local TV station. In college, he majored in home ec so he could take craft and textile courses, and parlayed his early TV experience into his own five-minute show, which he produced daily with another college student. The show, called Sam and Friends, introduced him to two of the most important figures in his life: His collaborator became his wife, and one of his puppets, a green lizard-like creature that Henson made from his mom's old coat and a dissected ping-pong ball became Kermit the Frog.

Kennedy Center Honors

This years recipients of the Kennedy Center Honors mostly focuses on music. Meryl Streep is the only exception.
Yo Yo Ma, cellist
Barbara Cook, opera singer
Neil Diamond, pop musician
Sunny Rollins, saxaphonist

It's the birthday of comedian Bob Hope (1903), born Leslie Townes Hope in Eltham, near London. His family moved to the United States when he was four years old, and he grew up in Cleveland, Ohio. His first successful show-biz venture came at the age of 10, when he won a Charlie Chaplin look-alike contest. By 1940, after working in vaudeville, Broadway, and radio, he was one of America's most popular comedians. His comedy was verbal, not physical, and he usually played unsympathetic characters that the audience could feel superior to.

He never won an Oscar for his acting — "Oscar Night at my house is called Passover," he once quipped — but the Academy nevertheless honored him five times, with two honorary Oscars, two special awards, and a Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award. The Guinness Book of World Records named him the most honored entertainer in the world, with 2,000 awards and citations, including 54 honorary doctorates and a knighthood from his native England.

In 1941, he performed his first show for soldiers, a group of airmen stationed in March Field, California. It was the beginning of nearly 60 years of shows at military bases at home and abroad. Congress unanimously passed Resolution 75 in 1997 to make him the nation's first Honorary Veteran, and he considered this his highest achievement.

Bob Hope died in 2003, two months after his 100th birthday.

May the Fourth be with you.

Today is Star Wars Day.
According to the online resource Wookieepedia, it is typically celebrated by sci-fi fans the world over with parties, movie marathons, Star Wars-themed toys, the occasional light-saber duel, and movie-quote exchanges on Twitter. You could also celebrate by reading one of the many Star Wars-related novels, playing a video game, or gazing at your collection of action figures in their original packaging. “It’s nice that this particular date seems to observe and celebrate the power of the Force, and we’re thrilled that Star Wars fans continue to find new ways to connect with a galaxy far, far away,” said a Lucas Films spokesperson.

Gandalf is Tested

Ian McKellen: Principal photography of The Hobbit began on 21 March, without me ... The wizard still had to be tested.

Sound Man

The Art of Foley

SoundWorks Collection: Gary Hecker - Veteran Foley Artist from Michael Coleman on Vimeo.

Another good Super Bowl commercial

Happy 70th Birthday, John Lennon.
Go to the Google start page to see a neat tribute to Lennon.

May the 3D Force be with you!

All 6 of the "Star Wars" films are going to be re-released in 3D.

Dr. Seuss Converse Collection

Converse has created a collection of Chuck Taylor canvas shoes embellished with a variety of favorite iconic illustrations by beloved children's author Dr. Seuss.

Today is Ringo's Starr's 70th birthday. What does he want for his present?

Starr’s birthday wishes are on the record: For his 70th, he wants “peace and love.”

Oprah got one too...

The Muppets get a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame.

"I find aging a lousy deal...I'm 74 now. You don't get smarter, you don't get wiser, you don't get more mellow, you don't get more kindly....Your back hurts more. You get more indigestion. Your eyesight isn't as good. You need a hearing aid. It's a bad business getting older, and I would advise you not to do it."
Woody Allen

"1stBank Center is unquestionably the best of the bunch."

Newly remodeled 1stBank Center (formerly Broomfield Events Center) opens with a crowd-pleasing show.

With such a strong opening night, we have high expectations for 1stBank Center, which already has a busy schedule ahead of it. And while some have questioned its projected success from the start, you need only look to the companies behind it — Phil Anschutz's AEG and Stan Kroenke's KSE — to realize that this arena is a major player that is here to stay.
Ricardo Baca, Denver Post Pop Music Critic

A blast from the past!

Schoolhouse Rock Live! presented by the Arvada Center Children's Theater.

The Denver Roller Dolls are coming to Broomfield! They will have several bouts at the Odeum Colorado Events Center starting in March.

Strange name...?

The Broomfield Events Center has been re-named The Odeum and will begin booking acts starting next year.

what's an odeum?

"I'm on a HIGH!"

First lady, Michelle Obama, appears on Sesame Street.

Coraline may be the only tween girl who hates the Jonas Brothers

Mouse Circus

Coraline, the movie, opens today. The New York Times has a review.

Can they do the Kessel Run in less than twelve parsecs?

Kite flying season is a couple months away, but these 3-D Star Wars kites are pretty cool. I'd like to see the X-Wing go up against the TIE-fighter in an aerial battle. "They're coming in too fast!"

In theatres February 6th

Neil Gaiman's Favorite Trailer

End of an era

Boulder Library is phasing out VHS movies.

And she'll be able to talk now, too

Always a bit player in the past, Tinker Bell will now be the star of several new Disney-Pixar films. The series will be called Disney Fairies and will aim for the success of Disney Princesses.

Angus MacLane, the supervising animator on Wall E, talks about the secrets of Pixar, the joys of Lego, R2D2 and his love for James Camerons' Aliens
Angus MacLane of Pixar: The Den of Geek interview

Turn off the lights!

Check out what Google did for Earth Hour.

You can make it with LEGO!

Today is the 50th anniversary of the first Lego brick! Here is a timeline of the brick's evolution, and here is informaton on how they're made.

Tintin will be made into a movie.

Books to Film

Huh. I didn't realize that they were making a Nancy Drew movie. Wonder if it will increase interest in the books?

Star Wars in a New Light

A New Sith, or Revenge of the Hope
Reconsidering Star Wars IV in the light of I-III

If we accept all the Star Wars films as the same canon, then a lot that happens

Bond not a Turkey

Last night Cameo and I went to see the new James Bond film "Casino Royal". The movie is an attempt to reboot the franchise by portraying Bond as a new agent - in affect it's his first assignment as he'


Tonight Cameo and I will be seeing The Who play at Pepsi Center. They are touring to promote their new album, so we'll hear some old classics along with ne

I attended "The Lion King" last night at Denver's Buell Theater. It was as visually beautiful as all the reviews had said. The music and plot were not as good as the Disney movie cartoon version (in my opinion) but the incredible puppetry and stage set


Last night Cameo, May, and I watched Zatoichi the Blind Swordsman - the 2003 version by Takeshi Kitano. Zatoichi has a long cinamatic history: 2

Pixar's magic man. A long, but informative, interview with John Lasseter, and how Pixar will be bringing changes to animation at Disney. Counter tha


Last night we finally got to see Mirror Mask on DVD (we checked it out from the library). The movie, written by Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean, was produced by the Hensen Company and released

Muppets take the Smithsonian

A display of many of the original Muppets, created by Jim Henson, has just been put on display at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History to mark the 50th anniversary of the pup


Play-Doh turns 50.


Last night Cameo and I watched Primer on DVD (imdb record). It's a short, independent sci-fi film that won the 2004 Grand Jury award at Sundance. This film does

Sarah, Ben, Cameo, and I went to see Narnia today. It was a fine show - the kids enjoyed it but I thought it dragged in the second act - and well attended. Because it was filmed in New Zealand, and because the special effects was done by WETA (the folk

Electric Boogaloo

For years now Disney has been exploting their back catalog, coming up with "sequals" to their old classics - Lady and the Tramp II, Cinderella II - bu

40 things that only happen in movies

Last night we went to see Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. It was a good movie, and probably my favoite of the four so far. (I also think the book is the
First there was Rock Paper Scissors
Then came Rock paper Scissors Spock Lizard (my favorite variant)
Now, gaze upon the glo
On it's 10th anniversary, Pixar tells the story behind Toy Story and how the success of that movie helped the studio become what it is today.
Cameo and I finally saw Batman Begins last night. It was a good movie - well acted and plotted - tha
The King Kong Trailer is finally out. (It's also showing before War of the Worlds in theaters.) I've been following the movie production diaries and K
This evening we went to see Howl's Moving Castle, the latest animated film from Hayao Miyazaki. While most American studios are moving toward computer generated animation, Miyazaki shows once again that
We saw Star Wars Episode III last weekend. I was glad to hear the film got good reviews, but Cameo, the kids, and I were dissapointed by the movie. Too much going on, and too much to wrap up, made for a thin plot. The dialog was stiff, and the effects, wh
Ben was reading an old issue of MacAddict and showed me an article on Apple ][ emulators. He and I downloaded an emulation program to try out, and what better way than by playing some
Cameo, Sarah, Ben, and I went to see Steamboy yesterday at the Mayan theater. It's only out in limited release, but I'm glad it played here in Denver. It was a pretty good movie - interesting stor
I've been on break the past week, so we found time to watch all of Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings movie trilogy (Posted by Jason to Entertainment