August 11th, 1973 saw the nation-wide premier of the coming-of-age classic American Graffiti. This nostalgic look at early 1960’s Americana was very successful and ended up being nominated for five Academy Awards, including two for up-and-coming director/producer George Lucas. Lucas was nominated for Best Director, and co-nominated for Best Screenplay, as well as being a part of the Best Picture bid. Lucas would go on to write, direct, and/or produce such iconic Hollywood blockbusters as (some of) the Star Wars series, the Indiana Jones series, and many others. His contributions don’t stop there, his films have also given rise to Lucasfilm Ltd. his production company, Industrial Light and Magic (graphics and animation), THX (surround sound), and all this on his personal playground Skywalker Ranch. The careers Richard Dreyfuss, Harrison Ford, and Ron Howard were also given a huge boost by¬†American Graffiti.

Also, tragically, one year ago today the world lost a very funny and inspirational spirit in Robin Williams. Star of such wonderful films/shows as Mork & Mindy, Good Morning, Vietnam, DeadPoets Society, Mrs. Doubtfire, Good Will Hunting, and many more. Robin Williams was a hilarious and beautiful soul that definitely left the world with an empty spot upon his departure.

For more on each day’s historical awesomeness, visit the History Channel website– that’s kind of what they’re in to.