July 26

Sandra Bullock, in full Sandra Annette Bullock, born: July 26, 1964, Arlington, Virginia, U.S.

American actress and film producer known for her charismatic energy and wit on-screen, especially as girl-next-door characters in romantic comedies.

Sandra Bullock by Sandy Gade Algra

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Movie: Speed directed by Jan de Bont

featuring Keanu Reeves, Dennis Hopper, Sandra Bullock, Joe Morton, Jeff Daniels

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July 26

George Bernard Shaw, born: July 26, 1856, Dublin, Ireland—died November 2, 1950, Ayot St. Lawrence, Hertfordshire, England

Irish comic dramatist, literary critic, and socialist propagandist.

The first person to have been awarded both a Nobel Prize in Literature (1925) and an Oscar (1938), for his contributions to literature and for his work on the film Pygmalion. Also a co-founder of the London School of Economics.

Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw

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Movie: My Fair Lady directed by George Cukor

featuring Audrey Hepburn, Rex Harrison, Stanley Holloway, Wilfrid Hyde-White, Gladys Cooper

My Fair Lady was adapted from the George Bernard Shaw comedy Pygmalion.

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July 24

Alexandre Dumas, père, born: July 24, 1802, Villers-Cotterêts, Aisne, France—died December 5, 1870, Puys, near Dieppe

One of the most widely read French authors, with perhaps his two most famous novels being "The Count of Monte Cristo" and "The Three Musketeers". These novels and others have been adapted into countless films over the years.

Dumas' father was a Haitian-born French general who was the son of a French nobleman and a slave from Haiti which was then a French colony. Dumas himself was married four times.

Dumas succeeded in gaining a great reputation first as a dramatist and then as a historical novelist. His memoirs recount the events of his extraordinary life, also provide a unique insight into French literary life during the Romantic period. He was the father (père) of the dramatist and novelist Alexandre Dumas, called Dumas fils.

The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas

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July 21

Ernest Hemingway, in full Ernest Miller Hemingway, born: July 21, 1899, Cicero [now in Oak Park], Illinois, U.S.—died July 2, 1961, Ketchum, Idaho

American novelist and short-story writer, awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954. One of the most famous authors of the early 20th-century. He published seven novels, six short story collections, and two non-fiction works. Many of his works are considered classics of American literature. His succinct and lucid prose style exerted a powerful influence on American and British fiction.

The Old Man and the Sea

by Ernest Hemingway

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July 19

Edgar Degas, in full Hilaire-Germain-Edgar De Gas, De Gas later spelled Degas, born: July 19, 1834, Paris, France—died September 27, 1917, Paris

French painter, sculptor, and printmaker who was prominent in the Impressionist group and widely celebrated for his images of Parisian life. Degas’s principal subject was the human—especially the female—figure. Ballet dancers and women at their toilette would preoccupy him throughout his career. Degas was the only Impressionist to truly bridge the gap between traditional academic art and the radical movements of the early 20th century.

Degas, Painter of Ballerinas

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Susan Goldman Rubin

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July 18

Nelson Mandela, in full Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, byname Madiba, born: July 18, 1918, Mvezo, South Africa—died December 5, 2013, Johannesburg

Often referred to as the father of the nation by South Africans, Nelson Mandela was an anti-apartheid activist and politician who served 27 years in prison. After being freed in 1990 he became the President of the African National Congress (1991-97) before being elected the first black President of his country in a fully multiracial election in 1994.

Mandela and de Klerk were jointly awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1993 for their efforts.

Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography

by Nelson Mandela volume 1

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Dare Not Linger: The Presidential Years

by Nelson Mandela volume 2

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July 15

Rembrandt van Rijn, in full Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn, Rembrandt originally spelled Rembrant, born: July 15, 1606, Leiden, Netherlands—died October 4, 1669, Amsterdam

Dutch Baroque painter and printmaker, one of the greatest storytellers in the history of art, possessing an exceptional ability to render people in their various moods and dramatic guises. Rembrandt is also known as a painter of light and shade and as an artist who favoured an uncompromising realism that would lead some critics to claim that he preferred ugliness to beauty.

Rembrandt

by Michael Bockemuhl

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July 13

Harrison Ford, born: July 13, 1942, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.

American actor, gained world-wide fame for his starring roles as Han Solo in the original "Star Wars" trilogy and the title character of the "Indiana Jones" film series. His career has spanned six decades and includes roles in several Hollywood blockbusters.

Harrison Ford: Masculinity and Stardom in Hollywood

by Virginia Luzon Aguado

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July 10

Nikola Tesla, born July 10, 1856, Smiljan, Austrian Empire (now in Croatia)—died January 7, 1943, New York, New York, U.S.

Serbian-American inventor and engineer who discovered and patented the rotating magnetic field, the basis of most alternating-current machinery. He also developed the three-phase system of electric power transmission. He immigrated to the United States in 1884 and sold the patent rights to his system of alternating-current dynamos, transformers, and motors to George Westinghouse. In 1891 he invented the Tesla coil, an induction coil widely used in radio technology.

My Inventions - The Autobiography of Nikola Tesla

by Nikola Tesla

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July 6

14th Dalai Lama, also called Jamphel Ngawang Lobsang Yeshe Tenzin Gyatso, Bstan-’dzin-rgya-mtsho, or Tenzin Gyatso, original name Lhamo Dhondup born: July 6, 1935, Tibet

Title of the Tibetan Buddhist monk who was the 14th Dalai Lama but the first to become a global figure, largely for his advocacy of Buddhism and of the rights of the people of Tibet. Despite his fame, he dispensed with much of the pomp surrounding his office, describing himself as a “simple Buddhist monk.”

During the 1959 Tibetan uprising, the Dalai Lama fled Tibet for India, where he currently lives as a refugee.

He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989.

The Dalai Lama's Big Book of Happiness: How to Live in Freedom, Compassion, and Love

by Dalai Lama

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July 3

Tom Cruise, byname of Thomas Cruise Mapother IV, born: July 3, 1962, Syracuse, New York, U.S.

American actor who emerged in the 1980s as one of Hollywood’s most popular leading men, known for his clean-cut good looks and versatility.

Started his career at age 19 in the 1981 film "Endless Love", and became a full-fledged movie star after starring in "Top Gun". He is well known for his roles in "Rainman", "Born on the Fouth of July", "Mission: Impossible" film series.

Tom Cruise: All the World's a Stage by Iain Johnstone

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Movie: Top Gun

directed by Tony Scott

featuring Tom Cruise, Kelly McGillis, Val Kilmer, Anthony Edwards, Tom Skerritt

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