Wednesday, October 29, 2008

70th Anniversary of Orson Welles' 1938 The War of the Worlds Radio Broadcast

Tomorrow, October 30th, is the 70th Anniversary of Mercury Theatre's radio broadcast of The War of the Worlds, a dramatization of H.G. Wells' novel The War of the Worlds (1898). Narrated by Orson Welles, the 1938 broadcast sent thousands of people into a frenzied panic, as they truly believed marauding Martians had landed at Grover's Mill, New Jersey and were advancing on New York City. The headline of the October 31, 1938, issue of The New York Times tells the story.

In recognition of the anniversary, Indiana Public Radio will broadcast Ball State University's live re-creation of the 1938 radio broadcast.

Other public radio stations will mark the anniversary by airing "We Take You Now to Grover’s Mill: The Making of the War of the Worlds Broadcast,” a 1988 documentary by award-winning radio producer and voice actor Joe Bevilacqua.

If you have a scheduling conflict, not to worry, as both Mercury Theatre's 1938 broadcast and Joe Bevilacqua's 1988 documentary are archived on the Internet and can be accessed at any time.

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