25 years ago today: ‘Home Alone’ opened in theaters

25 years ago today, audiences first saw the beloved Christmas comedy movie “Home Alone.”

Here”s to a quarter century of kids collecting clever tips on how to outwit would-be burglars, getting spooked by evil furnaces, quoting fictional gangster movies, and (maybe) learning that family is the best gift of all.

Directed by Chris Columbus – who would go on to helm the first two “Harry Potter” films – and produced by John Hughes, “Home Alone” became the highest-grossing live action comedy in the U.S. and worldwide after its release in 1990, and it held that record until it was overtaken by “The Hangover: Part II” in 2011.

A favorite holiday movie of many, “Home Alone” has secured its place in pop culture with plenty of parodies, with this frightening personalized holiday card, a reference on “Family Guy,” four (mostly ill-advised) sequels, and a John Williams-penned song that”s become a staple of school Christmas concerts.

Other notable November 16 happenings in pop culture history:

• 1945: “The Lost Weekend” premiered in New York. It went on to win four Oscars, including Best Picture.

• 1952: In Charles Schultz”s “Peanuts” comic strip, for the first time of many, Lucy holds a football for Charlie Brown and he fails to kick it.

• 1959: The original production of “The Sound of Music” opened on Broadway.

• 1960: Clark Gable died following a severe heart attack at age 59.

• 1977: Steven Spielberg”s “Close Encounters of the Third King” began a limited release, before opening in more theaters the following month.