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DECK THE HOLIDAY'S: 05/23/13

Thursday, May 23, 2013

THINGS YOU NEVER KNEW ABOUT THE MAKING OF A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS!!








    The annual airing of A Charlie Brown Christmas has become as much a part of Christmas as Santa and Rudolph.
    Charlie Brown's Christmas tree, Snoopy's decorated doghouse and Linus' classic recitation on the true meaning the season have become true baby-boomer Christmas icons. Throw in Vince Guaraldi's classic soundtrack, and you have an animated special that has defined a generation.


  • A Charlie Brown Christmas was not the first time the Peanuts characters were animated. In the early 1960's they appeared in a series of commercials for the Ford Motor Company.
  • A Charlie Brown Chirstmas was conceived, written, animated and produced in only six months, and was finished only a week before the air date. The first airing, on December 9, 1965, was sponsored by Coke.




  • A CBS executive who watched a preview was disappointed and declared the program, "A little flat....a little slow", and said he thought Peanuts was better suited for the comics page. Ed Levitt, an animator who worked on the show was more percipient, however, declaring "A Charlie Brown Christmas will run for a hundred years"!
  • The children who sing the opening and closing songs, "Christmas Time is Here", and "Hark The Herald Angels Sing", were chosen from a children's choir at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in San Rafael, California. The songs were recorded at Fantasy Records Studio in San Francisco.
  • The voice of Charlie Brown was provided by 8 year old actor Peter Robbins, who had previously appeared in over 35 television commercials, and had small roles in TV shows such as "F Troop" and "Get Smart". Robbins continued to be the voice of Charlie Brown in 5 more Peanuts specials,as well as in the first Peanuts movie. A Boy Named Charlie Brown.
  • The youngest voice in the cast was that of Sally, played by 6 year old Cathy Steinberg. Because she couldn't yet read, when had to be fed her lines a few words at a time.






  • Vince Guaraldi was a San Francisco jazz musician. Producer Lee Mendelson was driving across the Golden Gate Bridge when he heard one of Guaraldi's songs on the radio, and recruited him to write the music for the special.

  • The "voice" of Snoopy was provided by co-producer Bill Melendez.

  • The very first airing placed second in the ratings for it's week, behind Bonanza and ahead of such favorites as Red Skelton, Walt Disney and The Andy Griffith Show.

  • A writer for TIME magazine loved the show, calling it "refreshing and "special". He also wrote, " A Charlie Brown Christmas, is one children's special this season that bears repeating".

  • The 1965 airing won an Emmy Award for "Best Network Animated Special" and a Peabody Award for "Outstanding Children's and Youth's Program".

GOLDEN WEEK IN JAPAN!




    Golden Week (Gōruden Wīku), often abbreviated to simply GW and also known as Ōgon shūkan ( "Golden Week") or Ōgata renkyū ( "Large consecutive holiday") is a Japanese term applied to the period containing the following public holidays:



April 29

   Emperor's Birthday (Tennō tanjōbi), until 1988
   Greenery Day (Midori no hi), from 1989 until 2006
   Shōwa Day (Shōwa no hi), from 2007




Perhaps a little kite flying during this holiday


May 3

   Constitution Memorial Day ( Kenpō kinenbi)

May 4

    Holiday (Kokumin no kyūjitsu), from 1985 until 2006
    Greenery Day (Midori no hi), from 2007

May 5

    Children's Day (Kodomo no hi), also customarily known as Boys' Day (Tango no sekku)



Heading out to a movie or dinner for Golden Week



History

    The National Holiday Laws, promulgated in July 1948, declared nine official holidays. Since many were concentrated in a week spanning the end of April to early May, many leisure-based industries experienced spikes in their revenues. The film industry was no exception. In 1951, the film Jiyū Gakkō, recorded higher ticket sales during this holiday-filled week than any other time in the year (including New Year's and Obon). This prompted the managing director of Daiei Films to dub the week "Golden Week" based on the Japanese radio lingo “golden time,” which denotes the period with the highest listener ratings.






    At the time, April 29 was a national holiday celebrating the birth of the Shōwa Emperor. Upon his death in 1989, the day was renamed "Greenery Day."
    In 2007, Greenery Day was moved to May 4, and April 29 was renamed Shōwa Day to commemorate the late Emperor.




Heading out to a Shrine


Current Practice

    Many Japanese take paid time off on the intervening work days, but some companies also close down completely and give their employees time off. Golden Week is the longest vacation period of the year for many Japanese jobs. Two other holidays may also be observed for most or all of a week: Japanese New Year in January and Bon Festival in August. Golden Week is an extremely popular time to travel. Flights, trains, and hotels are often fully booked despite significantly higher rates at this time. Popular foreign destinations in Asia, Guam, Saipan, Hawaii, and major cities on the west coast of North America, such as Los Angeles, Seattle, San Diego, San Francisco, and    Vancouver, as well as in Europe and Australia, are affected during these seasons by huge numbers of Japanese tourists.