1948 – Rope, an Alfred Hitchcock film with a (very subtle, practically invisible) gay subtext opens in theaters.
Based on the play of the same name by Patrick Hamilton and adapted by Hume Cronyn it was inspired by the real-life thrill kill murder of 14-year-old Bobby Franks in 1924 by gay University of Chicago students Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb.
Starring James Stewart, John Dall and Farley Granger, this is the first of Hitchcock’s Technicolor films, and is notable for taking place in real time and being edited so as to appear as a single continuous shot through the use of long takes
The screenplay was written by Arthur Laurents. Both Farley Granger and John Dall, were gay.
The original play that it was based on more explicitly portrays the characetrs of Brandon and Phillip in a homosexual relationship. But the movie is considered one of Alfred Hitchcock’s masterpieces.
1963 – Judy Garland’s variety show debuts Sunday on CBS. While Judy Garland herself was popular with critics and fans, unfortunately the variety show itself was not.
CBS put the show up against Bonanza, then the fourth most popular program on television,and consistently performed poorly in the ratings. Although fans rallied in an attempt to save the show, CBS cancelled it after a single season.
TV Guide included the series in their 2013 list of 60 shows that were “Cancelled Too Soon”
1992 – Actor, singer, and songwriter Paul Jabara (Last Dance) dies from AIDS at the age of 44.
Jabara was in the original cast of the stage musicals Hair and Jesus Christ Superstar. He took over the role of Frank-N-Furter in the Los Angeles Production of The Rocky Horror Show when Tim Curry left the production to film the movie version in England. Jabara wrote Donna Summer’s “Last Dance” from Thank God It’s Friday, Barbra Streisand’s song “The Main Event/Fight”(1979), and co-wrote the Weather Girls hit, “It’s Raining Men” with Paul Shaffer. Paul Jabara won both Grammy Award for Best R&B Song and the Academy Award for Best Original Song for “Last Dance” from TGIF in which he also played the role of Carl, the lovelorn and nearsighted disco goer.
2006 – Closet case Republican congressman Mark Foley (from Florida) resigns after Instant Messages of a sexual nature between him and underage male Congressional pages are revealed.
Foley had served as chairman of the House Caucus on Missing and Exploited Children and led legislation to make federal sex offender laws harsher. Federal authorities had said the explicit IM messages could result in Foley’s prosecution, under some of the same laws he helped to enact but in the end Foley was not charged with any crime.
Foley is now in the real estate business in Palm Beach, Florida.
2012 – California becomes the first state to ban gay conversion therapy on minors to “cure” them of their homosexuality.