On this day in 1941, songwriters Leigh Harline and Ned Washington received Oscars for their song "When You Wish Upon a Star" at the 13th Annual Academy Awards. First used in the 1940 animated classic Pinocchio, Harline & Washington each received an Academy Award for Best Song.
Sung by Cliff Edwards (the voice of Jiminy Cricket) over the film's opening credits and during the final scene, the song went on to become Disney's iconic theme. "When You Wish Upon a Star" was used in the opening sequence of Disney's anthology television series and in multiple versions of Walt Disney Pictures' opening logos. Even the ships of the Disney Cruise Line use the first seven notes of the song as their horn signal!
The ultimate strength of a tune like "When You Wish" can be measured by the amount of performers who have covered it since 1940. Those who have "wished upon a star" include:
Diana Ross & the Supremes, Louis Armstrong, Chet Atkins, Gene Simmons, Barbra Streisand, The Manhattan Transfer, Ringo Starr, American Hi-Fi, Jesse McCartney, Steve Tyrell, Meaghan Jette Martin, and even the Mormon Tabernacle Choir!
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