October 30: Happy Birthday Henry Winkler and Kevin Pollak
Aayyyy!, the Fonz is 71 today—or at least Henry Winkler is. After graduating from college, Winkler worked for several years doing commercials. He was cast in the 1974 film The Lords of Flatbush alongside another then-unknown, Sylvester Stallone, and at about the same time was cast in a supporting part in a TV series set in Milwaukee in the 1950s:
Winkler won two Golden Globes and was a three-time Emmy nominee as Arthur Fonzarelli on Happy Days. During and after his time on the show he did a few movies, but never became a major film star. His most notable film roles included Chuck Lumley in Night Shift, Principal Himbry in Scream, and Coach Klein in The Waterboy. More recently he had a regular role on The WB’s Children’s Hospital.
Kevin Pollak turns 59 today. He has had an extensive career in stand-up comedy, including specials on HBO and Showtime, and since 2009 has hosted a weekly internet chat show called simply Kevin Pollak’s Chat Show. In film, he has done a number of interesting and significant supporting parts, of which the most memorable is probably Todd Hockney in The Usual Suspects:
Harry Hamlin, who starred on L.A. Law for five seasons and was a three-time Golden Globe nominee, turns 65 today. Juliet Stevenson, who celebrates her 60th, is a BAFTA Award winner for the film Truly, Madly, Deeply and an Olivier Award winner for starring in Ariel Dorfman’s play Death and the Maiden. Jessica Hynes, who turns 44, is well-known in British television, especially as the co-creator, writer and star (with Simon Pegg in each case) of the comedy series Spaced (she worked under the name Jessica Stevenson until 2007) Steve Kazee, who turns 41, is best known for his stage work, where he won a Tony and a Grammy (for the cast album) for the musical Once.
Matthew Morrison, who celebrates his 38th, was a Tony nominee for the musical The Light in the Piazza and starred on Glee as Will Schuester. Janel Parrish, who plays Mona Vanderwaal on Pretty Little Liars, turns 28 today. Sarah Carter, who is 36 today, starred on the TNT sci-fi series Falling Skies for its five season run.
Grace Slick, who turns 77, was a major figure in 1960s psychedelic rock and had a long tenure with Jefferson Airplane and their successor bands Jefferson Starship and Starship, for whom she was a vocalist and songwriter. Gavin Rossdale, who turns 51, is the lead singer and rhythm guitarist of the British alt-rock/grunge band Bush, who had major hit albums in the 1990s with Sixteen Stone and Razorblade Suitcase. Vanessa White, a member of the popular British-Irish girl group The Saturdays, turns 27 today.
Talented and controversial Argentine footballer Diego Maradona turns 56 today. In leading Argentina to the 1986 World Cup he scored goals against England and Belgium that are considered among the most amazing ever—along with another against England, the so-called “Hand of God” goal, which is one of the most amazing cases of cheating in international sports. Cuban-American gymnast Danell Levya, a three-time Olympic medalist and five-time world championship medalist, turns 25 today. Another outstanding gymnast is Nastia Liukin, who turns 27. She won the women’s all-around gold medal at the 2008 Olympics, one of her five medals there to go with nine world championships medals. Bill Terry (1898-1989), longtime first baseman of the New York Giants, was a Baseball Hall of Famer and the last National League player to bat over .400 for a full season, in 1930.
Today was/is the birthday of some significant French contributors to world film. Director Louis Malle (1932-1995) made the Oscar-winning documentary Le Monde du silence with Jacques Cousteau as well as two films nominated for Best Foreign Language Film, Lacombe, Lucien and Au revoir les enfants. He also made a few films in Hollywood such as Atlantic City and My Dinner with Andre. Claude Lelouch, who turns 79 today, won two Oscars for Un homme et une femme, Best Foreign Language Film and Best Writing, and has made a number of other well-regarded films during a writing and directing career that is still going. Clémence Poésy, who celebrates her 34th, began her career in French television, but has done a great deal of English-language film and television. She has been in notable films such as In Bruges and 127 Hours, but most people probably know her best as Fleur Delacoeur in three of the Harry Potter films (note—October 30 is the most common of several reported birth dates for Poésy).
Ruth Gordon (1896-1985) had a distinguished screenwriting career in partnership with Garson Kanin; the two received three Oscar nominations from 1947-52. She then resumed her acting career and gave notable performances in films like Rosemary’s Baby (winning an Oscar) and Harold and Maude (receiving a Golden Globe nomination). Ruth Hussey (1911-2005) is best known for her Oscar-nominated role in The Philadelphia Story. Anna Wing (1914-2013) had a long career in English film and television, including starring during the first seasons of the long-running soap opera EastEnders. Ed Lauter (1938-2013) was a very hard-working supporting player with over 200 credits to his name. Star Trek fans may recall William Campbell (1923-2011) for his two Original Series guest star roles, as Trelane in “The Squire of Gothos” and Koloth in “The Trouble with Tribbles.” Director Michael Winner (1935-2013) was known for several films he made with Charles Bronson, such as The Mechanic and Death Wish.
John Adams (1735-1826) was one of the most important political leaders in the early US and the 2nd President of the US. He has been portrayed on screen by actors such as William Daniels, Hal Holbrook, Paul Giamatti and Henry Thomas. Martha Jefferson (1748-1782), the wife of future president Thomas Jefferson, appears as a character in the musical 1776 and has been played on stage by Betty Buckly and on screen by Blythe Danner. Admiral William Halsey (1882-1959) was one of the leading American naval commanders of World War 2. He has been played in film by James Cagney, James Whitmore and Robert Mitchum. Fred W. Friendly (1915-1998) was a longtime radio and TV news producer and the co-creator, along with Edward R. Murrow, of the Emmy-winning news/documentary show See It Now. In the movie Good Night, and Good Luck, Friendly was played by George Clooney.
Ezra Pound (1885-1972) was one of the most important poets and critics of the 20th Century, most famous for his huge (but never-finished) and enormously complex The Cantos.
If today is your birthday, congratulations on sharing your big day with these notable names. Birthday wishes to everyone celebrating a big day today. Come back tomorrow for more celebrity birthdays.
Posted on October 30, 2016, in Celebrity Birthdays and tagged Claude Lelouch, Clemence Poesy, Diego Maradona, Grace Slick, Henry Winkler, Jessica Hynes, John Adams, Juliet Stevenson, Kevin Pollak, Louis Malle, Ruth Gordon. Bookmark the permalink. 14 Comments.