This Day in Showbiz History… August 8


Oscar-winning actor Dustin Hoffman (pictured) turns 85 today, while former N’Sync boy band member J C Chasez turns 46 and Larry Wilcox, the blond cop in TV’s ChiPS, turns 75. U2 bassist The Edge turns 61 today and Canadian singer Shawn Mendes turns 24.

It was on this day in 2022 that Grease and Xanadu star, Aussie-based hit-maker Olivia Newton John, finally lost her long battle with breast cancer. The British-born star was 73.

It was on this day in 1966 that a remark by John Lennon, in which he suggested his band, The Beatles, was more popular than Jesus Christ, led to the Liverpool group being banned by the South African Broadcasting Corporation.

On this day in 1975, Liza Minnelli stepped in for an ill Gwen Verdon, to play merry murderess Roxie Hart, until mid-September, in the original Broadway season of the musical Chicago. She had only six days to learn the part. Also, in 1997, Minnelli stepped in for a holidaying Julie Andrews in the title role of the stage version of the musical Victor/Victoria.

Back to John Lennon… it was on this day in 1975 that his solo hit, Stand By Me, rocketed to the top of the South African singles chart, staying at No 1 for four weeks. It was his second and last No 1. Just saying…