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Dateline: Events/Week of July 1, 1997 In News, Pop Culture, Tech, Celebrity, Entertainment & Fascinating Facts


In The News

China reclaims Hong Kong ending 156 years of colonial rule – as President Jiang Zemin welcomes 6.3 million compatriots to the motherland. Earlier in the day, 4,000 troops of the People’s Liberation Army moved into Hong Kong, taking over garrisons abandoned by departing British forces.

President Clinton denies “adamantly” that he had propositioned Paul Jones in a Little Rock hotel room six years ago. It was his first formal answer to sexual harassment charges by her.

The June unemployment rate is up to 5% in June from 4.8% in May.

The space shuttle Columbia’s astronauts took time out from their high-flying laboratory work to wish fellow Americans – both in orbit and on earth – a happy Independence Day.

Lockheed says it will acquire Northrop in a $11.6 billion defense deal. And, the government gives the nod to the Boeing-McDonnell merger.

Two women with multiple sclerosis were found dead in Detroit-area motels and Dr. Jack Kevorkian’s lawyer all but confirmed that the assisted-suicide advocate was involved in both deaths.

President Clinton said federal officials will work to keep the internet free of taxes and red tape so the network can foster economic growth worldwide.

Russian President Boris N. Yeltsin rewards his 37-year-old daughter, Tatyana Dyachenko with an official job as presidential image-maker.

Weekly radio address – President Clinton urges reforming the way campaigns are financed. “The way we pay for elections is broken. When it comes to fixing our campaign-finance system, let’s make this summer a time not of talk but of action, not of recrimination but of results.”

The Senate’s hearings on campaign fund-raising abuses begin. Sen. Fred Thomason (R-Tenn) said the committee ‘believes high-level Chinese government officials crafted a plan to increase China’s influence over the U.S. political process” and that the aim of the effort was “to subvert our election process.”

Appearing on this week’s “Meet the Press,” Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa) calls on President Clinton and Vice President Gore to appear voluntarily before the Republican-controlled Senate Governmental Affairs Committee which plans hearings on questionable fund-raising techniques for their 1996 reelection campaign. At the hearings, witnesses are expected to describe a 1996 democratic fundraiser at the Hsi Lai Buddhist temple in Southern California, where Gore was the featured speaker.

 “Joe Camel” - which has been a lightning rod for complaints from cigarette opponents is retired this week by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. Joe’s being yanked in favor of a new campaign, but Joe Camel will continue overseas. 

This week, Poland is invited to join NATO and In Warsaw - President Clinton salutes Poland for becoming America’s prospective military ally and vows that ‘never again’ will its citizens be conquered by outsiders. “Poland is taking its place in the community of democracies.”  

The Bill Cosby extortion trial begins in New York. A federal prosecutor charges during the opening arguments that Autumn Jackson (22) and two other defendants tried to extort $40 million from the actor because they were driven by greed and wanted to get rich quick. Autumn Jackson claims to be Cosby’s born-out-of-wedlock daughter. 

After a long 12-hour silence - the Mars rover Sojourner begins to respond to commands once again and begins its trek over Martian soil for the first time. Engineers at JPL were ecstatic. Said one “It feels like we’ve been reinvited to the party.”


Best-selling books – July 1, 1997

Bestsellers -

Chasing Cezanne - Peter Mayle

Plum Island - Nelson DeMille

Cold Mountain - Charles Frazier

Neverwhere - Neil Gaiman

Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt Everst Disaster - Jon Krakauer

Some of Me - Isabella Rossellini

Angela’s Ashes - Frank McCourt

The Proud Highway: Saga of a Desperate Southern Gentleman 1955-1967 - Hunter Thompson

The Bible Code - Michael Drosnin


Economy/Business news – July 1, 1997

Retailer Montgomery Ward & Co files for bankruptcy court protection. The company will remain open while it seeks to work out its financial problems.


Technology news – July 1, 1997

America Online (AOL) signs marketing agreements with Amazon.com Inc and 1-800-Flowers as part of its strategy to use its 8 million members to attract partners. Amazon.com will pay $19 million over three years for promotion on AOL’s Web site and NetFind Internet directory. AOL will get $25 million from 1-800-Flowers plus sales revenues.


Medical/Health news – July 1, 1997

Studies at the Mayo Clinic raise concerns about the popular weight-loss drug combination known as fen-Phen. The Clinic identified 24 women who developed damaged heart valves after taking the drugs. Five of the woman underwent heart surgery to repair or replace a defective valve. The findings prompted the Food and Drug Administration to warn doctors “because of the seriousness of the cardiac problems and their rare occurrence in otherwise healthy obese women.”


Sports news – July 1, 1997

Eleven days after biting the ears of Evander Holyfield during their heavyweight title match at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas - Mike Tyson’s right to fight is revoked indefinitely by the Nevada State Athletic Commission - subject to yearly review. Tyson is also fined $3 million - 10% of the purse he was paid to fight Holyfield. 

The American League defeats the National League 3-1 in annual All-Star game. Cleveland Indian catcher Sandy Alomar Jr. received the game MVP. 


Entertainment/Celebrity/Movies news – July 1, 1997

Passing – Actor James Stewart. He was 89 and died at his home in Beverly Hills.

Passing – Actor Robert Mitchum. He was 79. 

Family and friends gather inside a Beverly Hills church to pay last respects to actor Jimmy Stewart. Guests included Nancy Reagan, Bob Hope, June Allyson and Carol Burnett. Stewart (89) died last Wednesday.

Music news – July 1, 1997

The Insane Clown Posse – a rap duo – says Disney-owned “Hollywood Records” wants them to leave the label and is demanding as much as $1 million after recalling their album. The company finds the band objectionable. The Posse thinks the label is insane.

EMI Music acquires a half-stake in Jobete Music – the Motown publishing catalog for $132 million.

“Spice: The Official Video Vol. 1” from the Spice Girls comes at you next month. The girls promise “a raucous hour of girl power.”

John Corabi - former lead singer of Motley Crue sues the rock group for $4 million, contending the band members Tommy Lee, Mick Mars and Nikki Sixx, pretended Corabi was still in the group, then refused to pay him for work done on their latest album. Corabi claims that he contributed to or composed “at least 80%” of the music on the album “Generation Swine.” The original lead singer of the group, Vince Neil, recently returned to the popular band.


Top Music Albums – July 1, 1997

Butterfly Kisses - Bob Carlisle

Everywhere - Tim McGraw

Generation Swine - Motley Crue

Spice Girls

God’s Property - God’s Property

Batman and Robin - Soundtrack

Cryptic Writings - Megadeth

Love, Peace and Nappiness - Lost Blyz

Middle of Nowhere - Hanson

EV3 - En Vogue

Wu-Tang Forever - Wu-Tang Clang

Bringing Down the Horse - Wallflowers

Pieces of You - Jewel


Television news – July 1, 1997

Florence Henderson hosts “A Capitol Fourth” on PBS.

MTV kicks off Season #6 of “The Real World.”

A new TV ratings guide is unfolded - an enhanced ratings system favored by Congress and other critics. The new system labels programs that contain sex, violence and coarse language. Scheduled to take effect October 1 - the new system uses the letters V, S, L, D, and FV for denotation. Their labels will be incorporated into the existing TV rating system:

V - Violence

S - Sexual situations

L - Coarse language

D - Suggestive dialogue

FV - Fantasy violence.

A TV-PG can now carry, say, a TV-PG-D rating. 

HBO will duplicate the recent Mike Tyson-Evander Holyfield fight with actors. It’s the fight where Tyson took off a piece of Holyfield’s ear. The scene is part of an up-coming movie “Only in America: The Don King Story.” The scene is being added-in. 

Talk-show host Maureen O’Boyle begins anchor duties for “Extra,” replacing Libby Weaver. Boyle had been with “In Person,” which was cancelled


Top TV Shows/Ratings – July 1, 1997

60 Minutes - 14.84

Dateline-NBC (Tues) - 14.67

Touched By an Angel - 13.84

Dateline NBC (Mon) - 13.43

Seinfeld - 13.41

PrimeTime Live - 13.15

Awakenings - 12.79

Home Improvement - 12.51

ER - 13.35

Movie - Against her Will - 12.07

Suddenly Susan - 11.98

Walker, Texas Ranger - 11.43

Movie - The Ultimate Lie - 11.07

The X-Files - 10.82

Spin City - 10.79

Men Behaving Badly - 10.21

Frasier - 10.15

NYPD Blue - 10.10

Friends - 9.98

20/20 - 9.91

Caroline in the City - 9.83

Diagnosis Murder - 9.81

Suddenly Susan (Mon) - 9.68

Promised Land - 9.56

Movie - Harmful Intent - 9.53

Law & Order - 9.51

3rd Rock From the Sun - 9.46

Cosby - 9.42

Movie - Odd Couple: Together Again 9.34

Ellen - 9.32

Turning Point - 9.24

Mad About You - 9.17


Thursday night television listings/TV guide – week of July 1, 1997

CBS – Diagnosis Murder, Meloney, 48 Hours, David Letterman

NBC – Friends, Men Behaving Badly, Seinfeld, Suddenly Susan, ER, Jay Leno, Conan O’Brien

ABC – High Incident, Vital Signs. Turning Point, Nightline

PBS – America’s Scenic Rail Journeys, Mystery!, Charlie Rose

MTV – Music from Motel California, Beach MTV, Yo!

VH1 – Pop up Video, Hollywood and Vinyl


On David Letterman – Tim Robbins, Sarah Silverman

On Jay Leno – Robin Williams, Billy Crystal, Barry Manilow (repeat).


Top movies – July 1, 1997

Contact - Jodie Foster, Matthew McConaughey, James Woods, John Hurt, Tom Skerritt

Men In Black - Tommy Lee Jones, William Smith

Face/Off - John Travolta, Nicolas Cage


My Best Friend’s Wedding

Batman & Robin - Arnold Schwarzennegger, George Clooney Chris O’Donnell, Uma Thurman, Alicia Silverstone

Out to Sea - Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau

Con Air - Nicolas Cage, John Malkovich

The Lost World: Jurassic Park

 Speed 2: Cruise Control - Sandra Bullock, Jason Patric

Death and the Compass - Peter Boyle, Christopher Eccieston

Wild America - Jonathan Taylor Thomas

My Best Friend’s Wedding - Julia Roberts, Dermot Mulroney

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