Fact or Fiction?
The model ape used in the 1933 movie ‘ King Kong ‘ was 18 inches tall.
Dorris Day began her career as a dancer, and only began singing when she broke her leg.
The statue ‘ The thinker ‘ by Rodin is actually a portrait of the Italian poet Dante.
Lord Byron had a club foot.
There are over 30 000 verses in the Bible.
The Eskimo language has over twenty words to describe different kinds of snow.
William Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway on 27 November 1582, he was 18 at the time.
Samuel Clemens was not the only writer to use the pen-name ‘ Mark Twain ‘. It was used several years earlier by Isiah Sellers. Both men were river pilots on the Mississippi, where ‘ Mark Twain ‘ was a common technical term.
Donald Duck lives at 1313 Webfoot Walk, Duckburg, Calisota.
The Brothers Grimm compiled 211 fairy/folk tales. The brothers Jakob and Wilhelm Grimm did not write their tales as original stories, but from folk stories handed down through the generations. Their interest was in the early nineteenth century effort to create a German nation as at that time, modern Germany was divided into dozens of sovereign states. Their efforts also included the creation of a German dictionary that brought together the many dialects in an effort to establish a single German language.
Foghorn Leghorn’s favourite song is ‘ Camptown Races ‘.
The tablecloth in da Vinci’s Last supper was white.
The Marque de Sade wrote ‘ The 120 days of Sodom ‘ on a 120 metre roll of paper while imprisoned in the Bastille.
Snow White’s coffin was made of glass.
Bilbo and Frodo (from ‘Lord of the Rings’) share the same birthday, September 22.
The uncut version of the movie ‘The longest day’ was 179 minutes long.
The natural substance the violin bows are strung with is horse hair.
X-ray technology has shown there are 3 different versions of the Mona Lisa under the visible one.
James Bond smokes ‘Morland Balkan’ cigarettes.
The movie ‘ Wanda whips Wall Street ‘ was the first to be billed as being backed by Wall Street.
Composer Johann Sebastian Bach once walked 230 miles to hear the organist at Lubeck in Germany.
Pope Paul IV, who was elected on 23 May 1555, was so outraged when he saw the naked bodies on the ceiling of the Sistene Chapel that he ordered Michelangelo to paint garments on to them.
World heavyweight boxing champion, Gene Tunney also lectured on Shakespeare at Yale University later in his life.
William Shakespeare’s father’s first name was John.
Elzie Crisler Segar created the comic strip character Popeye in 1919
The ‘Thing’, from the movie of the same name, had green blood.
The fictional highwayman Dick Turpin’s horse was called Black Bess.
Maxwell Klinger (from the TV series M*A*S*H) wore a ’36B Miss Highrise’ bra.
The Beatles song ‘A day in the life’ ends with a note sustained for 40 seconds.
Yul Brynner stared in the play ‘The king and I’ more than 4000 times.
Superman’s hair grows ‘ incredibly long’ when exposed to red kryptonite.
( additional storylines include other random effects )
Miss Piggy’s measurements are 27-20-32.
Roger Ramjet’s American Eagle Squadron consists of Yank, Doodle, Dan and Dee.
Daffy Duck made his debut in 1937 in ‘ Porky’s Duck Hunt ‘.
John Cage composed ‘Imaginary Landscaper No.4’, which was scored for twelve radios tuned at random.
Charles Dickens was an insomniac, who believed his best chance of sleeping was in the centre of a bed facing directly north.
Although starring in many gangster films, James Cagney started his career as a chorus girl.
Michelangelo died at the age of 88.
The writer, Rudyard Kipling, only ever used black ink.
John Lennon’s middle name was Winston.
In the film ‘Star Trek : First Contact’, when Picard shows Lilly she is orbiting Earth, Australia and Papa New Guinea are clearly visible .. but New Zealand is missing .
The leading part in Shakespeare’s play ‘The Merchant of Venice’ is Shylock the Jew, though the play was written during a time when Jews were banned from living in Britain.
Handel wrote the score of his Messiah in just over 3 weeks.
The ‘Mona Lisa’ was once brought by Francis I of France in 1517 to hang in a bathroom.
‘Cocksucker Blues’ was a 1976 film about The Rolling Stones.
The movie ‘Cleopatra’, starring Elizabeth Taylor, was banned from Egypt in 1963 because she was a Jewish convert.
Over two hundred different languages are spoken throughout the Soviet Union.
Virginia Woolf wrote most of her work standing up.
Betty Grable’s legs were insured for one million dollars.
The ‘Over the rainbow’ scene from ‘The Wizard of Oz’ was originally cut from the film because it was ‘slow’ and added nothing to the plot. It was added again at the last moment.
The 3 largest newspaper circulations are Russian.
Before Mickey Mouse, Felix the Cat was the most popular cartoon character.
Salvador Dali once arrived to an art exhibition in a limousine filled with turnips.
The B’52’s, were named after a Fifties Hairdo.
During the chariot scene in ‘Ben Hur’ a small red car can be seen in the distance.
Over 400 films has been made, based on the plays of Shakespeare.
Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary’ was Mary, Queen of Scots.
There are 256 semihemidemisemiquavers in a breve.
Frank Sinatra was once quoted as saying rock ‘n’ roll was only played by ‘cretinous goons’.
The vegetarian composer Richard Wagner, once published a diatribe against ‘the abominable practice of flesh eating’.
The juke-box derives from the old English word for dancing – juke.
The Marx Brothers (Chico, Harpo, Groucho, and Zeppo) were actually named respectively Leonard, Adolph, Julius, and Hebert.
When young and impoverished, Pablo Picasso kept warm by burning his own paintings.
‘I am a Walrus’, by John Lenon, was inspired by a police two tone siren.
Charles Baudelaire, preferred to Wagners music, the sounds ‘ of a cat hung up by its tail outside a window and trying to stick to the panes of glass with its claws’.
The subject of the first printed book in England was Chess.
Tiny Tim called his daughter Tulip after his 1968 hit ‘Tiptoe through the Tulips’.
One of Britain’s most famous composers, Sir Michael Tippett, composed pieces notoriously difficult to play, At the premiere of his ‘Symphony No. 2’, the orchestra got lost in the middle of the piece and the conductor had to start again.
The canine filmstar Rin Tin Tin is buried in Pere-Lachaise cemetery in Paris.
B.B. King’s guitar, ‘Lucille’ is a Gibson guitar.
Between 1931 and 1969 Walt Disney collected thirty-five Oscars.
The French equivalent of ‘the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog’, a sentence which contains every letter of the alphabet (useful when learning to type), is ‘Allez porter ce vieux whisky au juge blond qui fume un Havane’, which translates to ‘Go and take this old whisky to the fair-haired judge smoking the Havana cigar’.
In the famous line ‘Wherefore art thou Romeo’, wherefore means why, not where.
In the story of Cinderella, her slippers were originally fur, but they became glass because of an error in translation.
Enid Blyton, writer of the ‘Famous Five’ had 59 stories published in 1959.
Pablo Picasso was abandoned by the midwife just after his birth because she though he was stillborn. He was saved by an uncle.
Nineteenth-century artist, Cesar Ducornet, drew with his feet – he had no arms.
Composer Ludwig van Beethoven was once arrested for vagrancy.
Mickey mouse’s Latin name is Michael Musculus.
About half the piano’s in England are thought to be out of tune.
The phrase ‘ The 3 R’s ‘ ( standing for ‘reading, writing and arithmetic’ ) was created by Sir William Curtis, who was illiterate.
To romanticise his image, Warner Brothers claimed that Humphrey Bogart was born on Christmas day, he was born 23 January 1899.
With 1477 stops, 33,112 pipes and a 365 horse-power engine, the Auditorium Organ in Atlantic City is the largest in the world.
Monaco’s national orchestra is bigger than its army.
Larry Hagman didn’t allow smoking on the set of Dallas.
It is the Doppler Effect, that causes trains and helicopters to change pitch as it passes by.
Giacomo Puccina, who composed many famous opera’s such as “La Boheme” and “Madam Butterfly” also composed ” La Fanciulla del West” set in the Wild West at the time of the Californian Gold Rush.
Rice – Lloyd Webber contemplated a show based on the Cuban missile crisis.
The balls of purring fluff in the Star Trek series were ‘Tribbles’.
The first Academy Awards (or Oscar’s) were presented on 16 May 1929.
In the original Star Wars movie, there are only two named female characters.
About two-thirds of the world’s population have no regular contact with newspapers, television, radio or telephones.
The theme music of the original Lone Ranger was The William tell Overture.
Richard Strauss wrote a ‘gay Viennese ballet’ on the subject of Whipped Cream.
Colonel Potter, from the TV series M*A*S*H, was allergic to tomato juice.
During World War II, W.C. Fields kept US $50 000 in Germany ‘in case the little bastard wins’.
The French composer J.B. Lully, while conducting a concert, pierced his foot with a pointed baton, and died from the resulting gangrene.
The Stone’s album ‘Sticky Finger’s has a zip on its sleeve.
The most commonly sung song in the world – Happy birthday to you – is under copyright, the copyright runs out in 2010.
Of the two chipmunks, Chip and Dale, Chip has the black nose.
Colour televisions are capable of producing only 3 colours, red, green and blue.
Fred Astaire’s first screen notes read: ‘Can’t act, Can’t Sing, Can Dance a little’.
The Nazi-sympathist song ‘Don’t Let’s Be Beastly to the German’s’, was sung seven times in one evening by Noel Coward, at the request of Winston Churchill.
Issur Danielovitch Demsky was born on 9 December 1916, but most people know him as Kirk Douglas.
On the same day as he completed his masterpiece “The Divine Comedy”, the Italian poet Dante died.
Elizabeth I, thought it was ill bred to make music in public.
The Boomtown Rats, who made a hit single, were inspired by a female random killer whose excuse was ‘I don’t like Mondays.
Charlie Chaplain’s cane was made of bamboo.
Judy Garland’s false eyelashes were sold at auction in 1979 for US $125.
The poet Coleridge drank about 2 litres of laudanum (tincture of opium) each week at the height of his addiction.
The Turkish War inspired the song’ We Don’t Want To Fight But By Jingo If We Do’.
According to Genesis 7:2, God told Noah to take 14 of each kind of ‘clean’ animal into the ark.
Because metal was scarce, the Oscars given out during World War II were made of wood.
Bambi was originally published in 1929 in German.
According to Genesis 1:20-22 the chicken came before the egg.
Marlene Dietrich was born 27 December 1901. She was one of the most popular film actresses of her day, and was considered an expert on men. She was said “Most women set out to try to change a man and when they have changed him they do not like him”
The opera singer Enrico Caruso practised in the bath, while accompanied by a pianist in a nearby room.
Colophony is a bow resin.
In the first 2 years after ‘talkies’ appeared, US cinema’s have attracted over 100 million people a week.
Bob Dylan turned The Beatles on to marijuana.
The name of the ‘Love Boat’ was the ‘Pacific Princess’.
The first crime mentioned in the first episode of ‘Hill Street Blues’ was armed robbery.
A Penny whistle has six finger holes.
Ghosts appear in 4 Shakespearian plays; Julius Caesar, Richard III, Hamlet and Macbeth.
George Bernard Shaw refused an Oscar in 1938, for the screenplay Pygmalion.
Mozart was buried in an unmarked pauper’s grave.
Sergei Prokofiev composed an opera called ‘The Giant’ when he was only seven years old.
Actress Sarah Bernhardt played the part of Juliet (13 years old) when she was 70 years old.
Beethoven’s Fifth, was the first symphony to include trombones.
The original title for the best seller ‘Gone with the wind’ was ‘Ba! Ba! Black sheep’.
The Guinness Book of Records holds the record for being the book most often stolen from British Public Libraries.
Sophia Loren’s sister was once married to the son of the Italian dictator, Mussolini.
In Papua New Guinea there are villages within five miles of each other which speak different languages.
The band, Buffalo Springfield, was named after an American Tractor.
Steve Martin’s first movie was ‘The Jerk’.
Irving Berlin, who was born on 11 May 1888 and who composed three thousand songs in his lifetime, couldn’t read music.
Turkey has a ban on kissing in films.
The Pearl Harbour air raid inspired the song ‘Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition’.
West Side Story is based on Shakespear’s play, Romeo and Juilet.
The great film comedian, W.C. Fields, died on Christmas Day in 1946. His tombstone bore the following epitaph: ” On the whole I would rather be in Philadelphia”.
Mae West was once dubbed ‘The statue of Libido’.
EMI stands for ‘ Electrical and Musical Instruments’.
The Green Hornet is the Lone Ranger’s grandnephew.
A Flemish artist is responsible for one of the smallest paintings in history. It is a picture of a miller and his mill, and it was painted on to a grain of corn.
Maurice Ravel, the French composer, died on 28 December 1937. He suffered from a debilitating brain disease late in his life, which left him unable to speak or even sign his name.
Leonardo da Vinci played the viola.
Some hotels in Las Vegas have gambling tables floating in their swimming pools.
Two of the greatest writers who ever lives, William Shakespeare and Miguel de Cervantes (who wrote Don Quixote), both died on 23 April 1616.
The French critic, Saint-Beuve, was born on 23 December 1804. On one occasion in his life he was unfortunate enough to get involved in a duel. When asked to choose his weapons, he replied ” I choose spelling, You’re dead”.
Composer Johann Sebastian Bach once walked 230 miles to hear the organist at Lubeck in Germany.
Beethoven incorporated the tune of ‘God Save the King’ into his ‘Battle’ Symphony.
Only one western film has even been directed by a woman.
The longest Hollywood kiss was from the 1941 film ‘You’re in the Army now’, it lasted 3 minutes and 3 seconds.
Each episode of ‘Dr. Kildare’ contained 3 suffering patients.
The first ever musical recording was to the tune of Yankee Doodle.
A hydrodaktulopsychicharmonica is a variety of musical glasses.
In 1976 Rodrigo’s ‘Guitar Concierto de Aranjuez’ was No I in the UK for only three hours because of a computer error.
The music hall entertainer Nosmo King derived his stage name from a ‘No Smoking’ sign.
Walt Disney originally supplied the voice for his character ‘Mickey Mouse’.