On this day: Remembering historic events that took place on 8 February


Over the years, each day of the calendar has witnessed a number of major happenings, some of which have made their place in history. The same goes for the day- 8 February. On this day in 1976, the American cult classic- The Taxi Driver- was released in theatres for the first time. On the same day in 1994, former India captain Kapil Dev fetched his 432nd Test wicket during a match against Sri Lanka, breaking the record of cricketer Richard Hadlee for the most Test wickets. Eminent British author Iris Murdoch passed away at the age of 79 on 8 February 1999. On that very day in 2014, a massive fire broke out at a hotel in the Saudi Arabian city of Medina, killing 15 people and injuring 130 others.

8 February- Historic Events:

Premier of The Taxi Driver; 1976:

American classic psychological thriller The Taxi Driver debuted on the silver screen on 8 February 1976. The film, featuring Robert De Niro, Jodie Foster and Cybill Shepherd in the lead roles, was helmed by Martin Scorsese and written by Paul Schrader. The movie revolves around a taxi driver- Travis Bickle, who is also a Vietnam War veteran, and his worsening mental state. The background of the story is a decaying and morally bankrupt New York City after the war.

The movie was a huge commercial success despite some controversy regarding its graphic violence at the dramatic climax and casting of then-12-year-old Foster in the character of a child prostitute. The Taxi Driver was conferred with several awards, including the Palme d’Or at the 1976 Cannes Film Festival. It also received four nominations for the 49th Academy Awards.

Kapil Dev picked up his 432nd Test wicket; 1994:

Twenty-nine years ago, on 8 February, India’s World Cup-winning captain Kapil Dev scripted history by picking up his 432nd Test wicket. With the scalp, he smashed the long-standing record of New Zealand cricketer Richard Hadlee and became the player with the most Test wickets. Dev achieved the exceptional feat during a Test match against Sri Lanka in Ahmedabad. In the eighth over of the game, he sent off opposition batter Hashan Tillakaratne for 5 runs. Following his record-breaking wicket, the crowd broke into emphatic celebrations and 432 balloons were flown off to mark the achievement.

British author Iris Murdoch passed away; 1999:

Iris Murdoch, an unconventional British author whose 26 novels combined engaging narratives, complex characters, and complex philosophical inquiry, breathed her last at the age of 79 on 8 February 1999. She was suffering from Alzheimer’s for a long period and died at a nursing home in Oxford, England. In a career spanning more than four decades, Murdoch’s fiction received numerous awards, including the Booker Prize for “The Sea, the Sea,” the Whitbread Literary Award for Fiction for “The Sacred and Profane Love Machine,” and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for “The Black Prince.” Her debut book was published in 1954. Murdoch devoted a large portion of her career to writing and teaching privately, avoiding appearances on lecture tours, award committees, and television.

Fire broke out at a hotel in Medina; 2014:

On 8 February 2014, a raging fire broke out at a hotel in the Saudi Arabian city of Medina. Following the tragic incident, as many as 15 people lost their lives and more than 130 suffered severe injuries. Medina is considered the second holiest city in Islam after Mecca and is where the Prophet Muhammad is believed to be buried. When the fire started, there were more than 700 guests from different countries at the hotel. According to reports, those who were killed suffocated to death.

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On this day: Remembering historic events that took place on 8 February
On this day: Remembering historic events that took place on 8 February
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