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1992: American comedian Johnny Carson, considered by many to be the king of late-night television, made his final appearance as host of The Tonight Show.
Robert Blake and Johnny Carson on The Tonight Show
Johnny Carson, byname of John William Carson, (born October 23, 1925, Corning, Iowa, U.S.—died January 23, 2005, Los Angeles, California), American comedian who, as host of The Tonight Show (1962–92), established the standard format for television chat shows—including the guest couch and the studio band—and came to be considered the king of late-night television.
Following high school graduation and service in the navy during World War II, Carson enrolled at the University of Nebraska. While there he participated in student theatrical activities and worked for a radio station in Lincoln. After graduating in 1949, Carson took another radio job, in Omaha, and in 1951 he began working as an announcer at a television station in Los Angeles. He was also given a Sunday afternoon comedy show, which led to his being hired as a writer for Red Skelton’s show. After Carson substituted successfully for Skelton at the last minute on one occasion, he was given his own short-lived variety show, The Johnny Carson Show. He then moved to New York City and in 1957 became host of the game show Who Do You Trust? In 1962 Carson replaced Jack Paar as host of The Tonight Show.
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British actor, director, writer, and producer
Laurence Olivier, in full Laurence Kerr Olivier, Baron Olivier of Brighton, also called (1947–70) Sir Laurence Olivier, (born May 22, 1907, Dorking, Surrey, England—died July 11, 1989, near London, England), a towering figure of the British stage and screen, acclaimed in his lifetime as the greatest English-speaking actor of the 20th century. He was the first member of his profession to be elevated to a life peerage.
Laurence Olivier in The Taming of the Shrew
The son of an Anglican minister, Olivier attended All Saints Choir School, where at age nine he made his theatrical debut as Brutus in an abridgement of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. Five years later he played the female lead in The Taming of the Shrew at Oxford’s St. Edward’s School, repeating this performance at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival. These early stage appearances did not go unnoticed by the theatrical notables of the era, who encouraged Olivier to consider acting as a profession. At first he dismissed the notion, hoping to follow the example of his older brother by managing an Indian rubber plantation; but his father, who had heretofore been ambivalent on the subject of acting, all but demanded that young Laurence embark upon a stage career.
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