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Desi Arnaz

Desi Arnaz

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Bataan / Back... The World War II Philippines are the setting for these battle-filled films that... more info $14.98was $14.98 Buy Now

I Love Lucy:... In 1953, three classic first season I Love Lucy episodes (“The Benefit,”... more info $14.98was $14.98 Buy Now

The Long, Long... Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz live slaphappily ever after as newlyweds... more info $5.98was $5.98 Buy Now

TCM Greatest... This TCM Greatest Classic Films Set includes these four great films:BataanRobert... more info $19.99was $27.98 Buy Now

Also Known As: Died: December 2, 1986
Born: March 2, 1917 Cause of Death: cancer
Birth Place: Cuba Profession: Cast ...
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MILESTONES

1933:
Family's property was confiscated, father was held as political prisoner for six months and Desi Arnaz and mother fled to Miami during the Batista revolution in Cuba
:
While in high school worked as singing guitarist, relieving the Buddy Rogers Orchestra at the Roney Plaza Hotel in Miami
1937:
Apprenticed under Xavier Cugat on tour for six months
:
Formed own rival rhumba band, Desi Arnaz and his Xavier Cugat Orchestra; first introduced the conga line
1939:
Featured on Broadway in the Rodgers and Hart musical, "Too Many Girls"
1940:
First film as actor, "Too Many Girls"
1940:
Signed two-year contract with RKO
:
Bought five-acre ranch in Chatsworth CA with Lucille Ball, christened Desilu
1942:
Performed onstage in singing, dancing vaudeville act
1942:
Signed by MGM
1942:
First dramatic film role in "Bataan"
1943:
Served in US Army Special Services at Birmingham General Hospital in Southern CA organizing entertainment for returning wounded servicemen
1946:
Formed 22-piece orchestra; introduced signature song, "Babalu"
:
Appeared with band in 61-minute film, "Cuban Pete"
:
Served as musical director of Bob Hope's radio program
1951:
Formed Desilu Productions, with himself as president and Lucille Ball as vice president, to produce the TV series, "I Love Lucy"
:
Starred, produced and directed TV sitcom, "I Love Lucy"
1957:
Sold syndication rights and "I Love Lucy" series back to CBS for $4 1/2 million to finance expansion of Desilu studio
1957:
Desilu purchased RKO Gower and RKO Culver City Studio facilities from General Tire, giving Desilu 35 sound stages
1957:
"I Love Lucy" expanded into the hour-long format, "The Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Show"
1958:
Desilu went public
:
Hosted Desilu's "Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse"
1962:
Served as executive producer on Lucille Ball's first solo series, "The Lucy Show"
1962:
Sold his shares of Desilu to Ball (she later sold Desilu to Gulf + Western in 1967)
:
Was executive producer of "The Mothers-in-Law"
1982:
Billed as Desiderio Arnaz in small role in "The Escape Artist"

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