History Book – Pinocchio, and a historic space flight


NICK EICHER, HOST: Today is Monday, February 3rd. Thank you for turning to WORLD Radio to help start your day. Good morning. I’m Nick Eicher.

MARY REICHARD, HOST: And I’m Mary Reichard. Coming next on The World and Everything in It: the first female pilot of a Space Shuttle mission.

Plus, 60 years ago, a famous speech that signaled the United Kingdom’s support for African independence movements.

But first, the 80th anniversary of a Disney animated classic. Here’s Paul Butler.

PAUL BUTLER, REPORTER: We begin today with February 7, 1940. After just two years in production, Disney Studios releases it’s second feature length animated film Pinocchio:

MOVIE CLIP: Little puppet made of pine, awake. The gift of life is thine. 

The film is based on the classic Italian children’s story of the same name. Pinocchio follows the adventures of a wooden puppet who comes to life.

MOVIE CLIP: I can move! I can talk! Yes Pinocchio, I’ve given you life. Am I a real boy? No, Pinocchio. To make Geppetto’s wish come true, will be entirely up to you. Up to me? Prove yourself brave, truthful, and unselfish, and some day you will be a real boy.

The film features many moral lessons, including obedience, respect, bravery, and of course—truthfulness:

MOVIE CLIP: Pinocchio, why didn’t you go to school today? Well, I um. I was going to go to school until I met somebody. Met somebody? Yeah. Two big monsters! [SOUND OF GROWING NOSE] Oh please help me! I’m awful sorry. You see Pinocchio, a lie keeps growing until it’s as plain as the nose on your face. 

Due to World War II, Disney lost a lot of money on the film during its first release—more than a million dollars. But the studio re-released it theaters in 1945, and again every 7 to 10 years after that until 1992. To date, the film has made more than $85 million. 

DISNEY SONG: I’VE GOT NO STRINGS ON ME

Disney’s 1940 Pinocchio featured groundbreaking advancements in animation. Vivid colors, life-like movements, and realistic renderings of water, smoke, and shadows. Leading many film historians, like J.B. Kaufman, to believe it may be the best animated film in Disney’s library. A live-action remake of the film is currently in the works. 

Next, February 3rd, 1960:

MACMILLAN: It is, as I have said, a special privilege for me to be here in 1960… 

After a month-long tour of British colonies all across Africa, English Prime Minister Harold Macmillan speaks to members of Parliament in Cape Town, South Africa. The address becomes known as the “Wind of Change” speech, from a single line in the hour long address.

MACMILLAN: In different places it takes different forms, but it is happening everywhere. The wind of change is blowing through this continent, and, whether we like it or not, this growth of national consciousness is a political fact, and our national policies must take account of it.

Macmillan’s speech is a signal that the Conservative-led British government would not attempt to put down independence efforts across the continent.

MACMILLAN: This experience of our own explains why it has been our aim in the countries for which we have borne responsibility, not only to raise the material standards of life, but also to create a society which respects the rights of individuals, a society in which men are given the opportunity to grow to their full stature—and that must in our view include the opportunity to have an increasing share in political power and responsibility.

The South African Parliament responds coldly to the address. Some see the new policy as abandoning the white settlers. Even some African nationalists are distrustful of England’s true intentions. But others, like Nelson Mandela, point to the speech as a great turning point, saying it gives the African people “inspiration and hope.” 

And finally, 25 years ago today, February 3rd, 1995.

AUDIO: [SOUND OF LAUNCH]

The Space Shuttle Discovery lifts off from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. It’s the first mission under a new partnership between the U.S. space shuttle and Russian Mir space station programs.

NASA SOUND: Both Eileen and I will be up in the forward part of the flight deck in our seats…

It’s also the first mission piloted by a woman: Air Force Colonel Eileen Collins.

COLLINS: The Space Shuttle orbiter is just an amazing flying machine. It’s a rocket. It’s a spaceship. It’s an airplane. It’s just so versatile. It’s a wonderful ship. 

Four years later, the former military instructor and test pilot, became the first female commander of a Space Shuttle mission. She later talked about her dreams of space exploration with Oprah Winfrey:

COLLINS: I’d like to see space travel as something that belongs to people round the world, not just a few astronauts, but something we can all experience… 

Before her retirement in 2006, Collins logged more than five and a half weeks in outer space. Not bad for someone who didn’t take her first flight in a plane until she was 19 years old.

That’s this week’s WORLD Radio History Book, I’m Paul Butler.


(Photo/Disney)

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

Like this story?

To hear a lot more like it, subscribe to The World and Everything in It via iTunes, Overcast, Stitcher, or Pocket Casts.

iTunes

Free

Overcast

Free

Stitcher

Free

Pocket Casts

(Requires a fee)


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.