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John Candy was an actor and comedic legend

Born October 31

by Legacy Staff

With a name like John Candy, he had to be born on Halloween. We remember the comic actor and other famous people born this day, October 31, in history.


ALPHONSO FORD, U.S. basketball player who was one of the greatest scorers in college basketball history, is born in Greenwood, Mississippi.


1967: Adam Schlesinger, bassist and singer-songwriter with the power pop band Fountains of Wayne.


BERNARD EDWARDS, U.S. bassist who was a member of the successful dance band Chic and worked with the Power Station and Diana Ross, is born in Greenville, North Carolina.


JOHN CANDY, Canadian actor who was one of the most popular comic actors of his time, appearing in “Stripes,” “Uncle Buck,” and “Planes, Trains, and Automobiles,” is born in Newmarket, Ontario. At his 1994 funeral, he was remembered as “a gentleman and a great comic talent” by co-star Steve Martin. Friend and filmmaker John Hughes said later that Candy’s death caused him to abandon Hollywood and the industry he felt worked his friend to death. Catherine O’Hara remembered him as a man of principle, and as a humble, sensitive man. Read more

ZAHA HADID, Iraqi-born British architect who was the first woman to receive the Pritzker Architecture Prize, is born in Baghdad, Iraq. Known as the Queen of the Curve for her distinctive style, Hadid was one of the best-known women in architectural history. The Iraqi-born British citizen brought futuristic grandeur to her art, mingling sweeping curves and stark angles to create notable buildings including the wave-shaped London Aquatics Centre, designed for the 2012 Summer Olympics. Read more


BRIAN PICCOLO, U.S. NFL running back for the Chicago Bears whose battle with cancer and friendship with Bears great Gale Sayers were portrayed in the movie “Brian’s Song,” is born in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.


David Ogden Stiers, actor best known for playing Major Charles Emerson Winchester III in “M*A*S*H”, is born in Peoria, Illinois.


MICHAEL LANDON, U.S. actor known for his roles on “Bonanza” and “Little House on the Prairie,” is born in Queens, New York. From 1959 to 1973 on “Bonanza,” Landon played “Little Joe” Cartwright, a fan favorite who received the most mail of all the show’s characters – and who, as time went on and his popularity grew, found ever more reasons to take off his shirt. As well as starring on the show, Landon wrote and directed a number of episodes, like season three’s “The Gamble.” Read more


BUD SPENCER, Italian actor known for spaghetti Western films with Terence Hill including “They Call Me Trinity,” is born in Naples, Italy.


Andrew Sarris (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)ANDREW SARRIS, U.S. film critic known for his work with the Village Voice, is born in Brooklyn, New York. Sarris started with the Voice in 1960 and established himself as a major voice in 1962 with the essay “Notes on the Auteur Theory,” according to his 2012 obituary by The Associated Press. Acknowledging the influence of French critics and even previous American writers, Sarris argued for the primacy of directors and called the “ultimate glory” of movies “the tension between a director’s personality and his material,” the obituary said. Read more


JOHN POPLE, British theoretical chemist awarded the 1998 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Walter Kohn, is born in Burnham-on-Sea, Somerset, England.


CLEO MOORE, U.S. actress who was a blond bombshell in the movies during the 1950s, is born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.


BARBARA BEL GEDDES, U.S. actress who starred in the film noir “Panic in the Streets” but was known best for her role as Miss Ellie on “Dallas,” is born in New York, New York. Bel Geddes was nominated for an Academy Award for best supporting actress for the 1948 drama “I Remember Mama” and was the original Maggie the Cat on Broadway in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.” But she was known best as the matriarch of the rambunctious Ewing oil family on “Dallas,” which hurtled to the top of the ratings despite negative reviews. Bel Geddes won an Emmy in 1980 as best lead actress in a drama series, according to her 2005 obituary by The Associated Press. Read more

ILLINOIS JACQUET, U.S. jazz saxophonist who played with Lionel Hampton, Cab Calloway, and Count Basie, is born in Broussard, Louisiana.


DICK FRANCIS, successful British jockey who became a best-selling crime novelist, is born in Tenby, Wales. Francis was the author of 42 novels. He was also a successful jockey, winning more than 350 races. He retired from racing in 1957 and took up writing, first as a racing correspondent for Britain’s Sunday Express newspaper. He began writing novels in 1962, according to his 2010 obituary by The Associated Press. Read more

HELMUT NEWTON, prolific German fashion photographer, is born in Berlin, Germany.


WILLIAM H. MCNEILL, Canadian-American world historian noted for his writings on Western civilization, is born in Vancouver, British Columbia.


DALE EVANS, U.S. actress and singer who was the wife of Roy Rogers, is born in Uvalde, Texas. “‘Cowgirl’ is an attitude, really. A pioneer spirit, a special American brand of courage. The cowgirl faces life head-on, lives by her own lights, and makes no excuses. Cowgirls take stands; they speak up. They defend things they hold dear.” Read more

OLLIE JOHNSTON, U.S. animator for Disney who contributed to animated features including “Pinocchio,” “Snow White,” and “Fantasia,” is born in Palo Alto, California. Johnston worked as an assistant animator on “Snow White,” became an animation supervisor on “Fantasia” and “Bambi” and an animator on “Pinocchio.” He was especially proud of his work on “Bambi” and its classic scenes, including one depicting the heartbreaking death of Bambi’s mother at the hands of a hunter. That scene has brought tears to the eyes of generations of young and old viewers, according to his 2008 obituary by The Associated Press. “The mother’s death showed how convincing we could be at presenting really strong emotion,” he remarked in 1999. Read more


MURIEL DUCKWORTH, Canadian pacifist, feminist, and community and social activist, is born in Austin, Quebec.


JULIA LEE, U.S. blues musician who had a string of “dirty blues” hits in the 1940s, is born in Boonville, Missouri.


ETHEL WATERS, U.S. actress and jazz, blues, and pop singer whose best-known recordings include “Stormy Weather” and “Heat Wave,” is born in Chester, Pennsylvania.


CHIANG KAI-SHEK, who led the Republic of China (Taiwan) between 1928 and 1975, is born in Fenghua, Zhejiang, Qing, China.


JULIA PETERKIN, U.S. author who won the 1929 Pulitzer Prize for her novel “Scarlet Sister Mary,” is born in Laurens County, South Carolina.


JULIETTE GORDON LOW, U.S. founder of the Girl Scouts of the USA, is born in Savannah, Georgia.


ADOLF VON BAEYER, German chemist who was the 1905 recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, is born in Berlin, Prussia.


JOHN KEATS, English Romantic poet known for “Ode on a Grecian Urn,” is born in Moorgate, London.


KATSUSHIKA HOKUSAI, Japanese artist known for the woodblock print series “Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji,” is born in Edo (Tokyo), Japan.

Discover notable people who died this day in history including actor River Phoenix.

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