On This Day: Release the Cryer!


Happy April 16, dear reader! Time to join Movieline on another breezy expedition through the historical arcana and milestones that helped shaped the pop culture you know and love today. Honestly, April 16 is not quite the rich trove of happenings that you're used to, but we shall make a go of it thanks to a few strategically-born men.

· 1940: The first-ever televised broadcast of a baseball game takes place in Chicago on WGN. The exhibition game between the White Sox and Cubs was a ratings smash for its era, nabbing an unheard-of 12 viewers.

· 1965: Jonathan Niven Cryer is born in New York to a pair of showbiz parents. He would eclipse their own fame by the mid-'80s in films like Pretty in Pink and Hiding Out, meeting his eventual Two and a Half Men co-star Charlie Sheen on the set of Hot Shots in 1991. Nearly two decades later, he would be the first Cryer to tape a TV show in front of an empty studio audience due to an ex-wife who allegedly hired a hit man to take care of a custody battle. Extraordinary.

· 1965: Martin Lawrence is born in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, where his father was stationed with the U.S. Army. May he have as big an opening today with Death at a Funeral.

· 1990: Jack Kevorkian performs his first assisted suicide in Michigan, leading to a long decade of litigation and eventual imprisonment. His story will be brought to you April 24 in the HBO Films presentation You Don't Know Jack -- a proud sponsor of Movieline! (This concludes this broadcast of the Movieline Product-Placement System.)