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Doris Day as SOTM March 2021


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Juanita Bartlett also helmed Scarecrow and Mrs. King. She was known for writing detective stories and spy stories. Not romantic comedy material, which would have been more suited to Doris' strengths. So I can only imagine what sort of scripts were being submitted by Juanita to Doris and Terry. Though the connection here would have been James Garner. Maybe the idea was to reunite Doris with James Garner in one of the new TV movies written and produced by Juanita Bartlett.

And though the article doesn't say it, because Stoddard doesn't say it, usually these TV movies function as pilots. Like if one of them does well in the ratings they try to convert it into a weekly series. 

They should have been buying successful plays (even off-Broadway hits) that they could have adapted for her to do on television. Pairing her with someone known for crime dramas, someone known for developing pilots, doesn't seem like it was the right idea.

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From what Doris said, she was to have played the same character in the two hour mysteries. 

Another project around the same time was called "Running Mates" and was about a man and woman running for Mayor of a small, Northern California Town.  Doris also said no and it was turned into a two hour movie in 1990 called "Opposite Attract" with Barbara Eden in the Doris Day role. 

A lot of this came about because of Doris Day's appearance in January of 1989 on the Golden Globes where she accepted the DeMille Award. People were stunned at how gorgeous she looked and the offers started to pour in. Of course she'd only gone because Terry was nominated for Best Song ("Kokomo"). Had he not been nominated, she would never have agreed to accept the award.

At her table was Allan Carr who convinced her to be a Presenter on the Oscars that Year. He was producing what turned out to be an infamous show (Rob Lowe, Snow White, etc.). 

She thought Allan was a delight and that he reminded her of her friend Paul Lynde. 

Her presence on the Oscars was announced and was even in TV Guide. However, at the last minute, she had an accident in her yard that required stitches and meant she could not go.  Hmmmmmmm

My personal opinion is that she decided she did not want to attend her first Oscar Show since 1960.

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3 minutes ago, Paulio said:

From what Doris said, she was to have played the same character in the two hour mysteries. 

Another project around the same time was called "Running Mates" and was about a man and woman running for Mayor of a small, Northern California Town.  Doris also said no and it was turned into a two hour movie in 1990 called "Opposite Attract" with Barbara Eden in the Doris Day role. 

A lot of this came about because of Doris Day's appearance in January of 1989 on the Golden Globes where she accepted the DeMille Award. People were stunned at how gorgeous she looked and the offers started to pour in. Of course she'd only gone because Terry was nominated for Best Song ("Kokomo"). Had he not been nominated, she would never have agreed to accept the award.

At her table was Allan Carr who convinced her to be a Presenter on the Oscars that Year. He was producing what turned out to be an infamous show (Rob Lowe, Snow White, etc.). 

She thought Allan was a delight and that he reminded her of her friend Paul Lynde. 

Her presence on the Oscars was announced and was even in TV Guide. However, at the last minute, she had an accident in her yard that required stitches and meant she could not go.  Hmmmmmmm

My personal opinion is that she decided she did not want to attend her first Oscar Show since 1960.

Enjoy reading this stuff, Paul! Maybe she felt as if she was being pulled back into the Hollywood grind and it's not what she really wanted.

When I watched the Vicki! episode on YouTube, it was clear to me that by 1993 she had totally reinvented herself. The hotel was taking up a lot of her time, the animal foundation work was also keeping her busy. At least in the context of those segments, it seemed like she was in charge of her own domain and was very successful, combing business with charity efforts. It was a whole other career for her. And it was fulfilling. So why go back to movies and television full-time? There was no need for it, if it wasn't going to make her happy. 

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Yes, I'd read she'd backed out of that Oscar show at the last minute.  Maybe for the best, as it turned out.

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We've been talking about how well Doris worked with children. I think it should also be mentioned how well she worked with her female costars. Some lead actresses are temperamental and feel threatened by the starlets playing the supporting roles. But Doris never seems that way.

She works beautifully with Allyn Ann McLerie in CALAMITY JANE.

She allows Dorothy Malone and Elisabeth Fraser to have important moments in YOUNG AT HEART.

She collaborates nicely with Myrna Loy in MIDNIGHT LACE.

She doesn't mind Polly Bergen's screen time in MOVE OVER DARLING.

And of course she gets along with the gals on her sitcom-- Kaye Ballard, Jackie Joseph and Rose Marie.

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Thought I'd post Doris' guests on the Best Friends cable show:

Episode 1: ROCK HUDSON (widely publicized, Rock's last screen appearance)
Episode 2: LES BROWN
Episode 3: BOBBY BENSON
Episode 4: DENVER PYLE
Episode 5: EARL HOLLIMAN
Episode 6: BIGGEST (Paul, was this one of Doris' dogs?)
Episode 7: JOAN FONTAINE
Episode 8: CLEVELAND AMORY
Episode 9: GRETCHEN WYLER
Episode 10: MICKEY GILLEY
Episode 11: DANNY COOKSEY
Episode 12: NO GUEST? (none listed on the IMDb)
Episode 13: ALAN SHEPARD
Episode 14: HOWARD KEEL
Episode 15: KAYE BALLARD
Episode 16: NO GUEST? (none listed on the IMDb)
Episode 17: ANGIE DICKINSON
Episode 18: ROBERT WAGNER
Episode 19: TONY RANDALL
Episode 20: LONI ANDERSON
Episode 21: JILL ST. JOHN
Episode 22: GARY COLLINS
Episode 23: GWEN WYNN
Episode 24: TONY BENNETT
Episode 25: CONSTANCE EDNEY
Episode 26: LESLIE NIELSEN

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On 3/5/2021 at 1:45 PM, TopBilled said:

Thought I'd post Doris' guests on the Best Friends cable show:

Episode 1: ROCK HUDSON (widely publicized, Rock's last screen appearance)
Episode 2: LES BROWN
Episode 3: BOBBY BENSON
Episode 4: DENVER PYLE
Episode 5: EARL HOLLIMAN
Episode 6: BIGGEST (Paul, was this one of Doris' dogs?)
Episode 7: JOAN FONTAINE
Episode 8: CLEVELAND AMORY
Episode 9: GRETCHEN WYLER
Episode 10: MICKEY GILLEY
Episode 11: DANNY COOKSEY
Episode 12: NO GUEST? (none listed on the IMDb)
Episode 13: ALAN SHEPARD
Episode 14: HOWARD KEEL
Episode 15: KAYE BALLARD
Episode 16: NO GUEST? (none listed on the IMDb)
Episode 17: ANGIE DICKINSON
Episode 18: ROBERT WAGNER
Episode 19: TONY RANDALL
Episode 20: LONI ANDERSON
Episode 21: JILL ST. JOHN
Episode 22: GARY COLLINS
Episode 23: GWEN WYNN
Episode 24: TONY BENNETT
Episode 25: CONSTANCE EDNEY
Episode 26: LESLIE NIELSEN

What a line up. I didn't know Joan Fontaine appeared on that show. But she did live in the Carmel area.

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6 minutes ago, Hibi said:

What a line up. I didn't know Joan Fontaine appeared on that show. But she did live in the Carmel area.

Yes, that probably explains Joan's participation, her friendship with Doris. 

Some of the guests are very much of that era....like Danny Cooksey who was appearing on the hit sitcom Diff'rent Strokes. And Mickey Gilley who was popular in country music during the early to mid-80s.

But it's nice to see her reunite with old movie costars like Rock Hudson, Tony Randall and Howard Keel, as well as costars from her hit sitcom-- Denver Pyle and Kaye Ballard.

I am wondering if this cable series was ever rerun or issued on DVD. 

I remember how when Rock died all the entertainment news shows like Entertainment Tonight used a clip of his appearance on this show since it was his very last screen appearance before he died. And he looked a bit gaunt. According to the IMDb his episode was initially broadcast in July 1985. I am assuming it was filmed a month or two earlier, right after he finished up on Dynasty. During the summer he was in Paris for treatments, later succumbing to AIDS-related illness in October of that year.

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The episode was filmed in July of 1985 (July 16th) but did not air until the fall when the series began on CBN. The dates in IMDB are the dates the episodes were filmed, not when they aired. 

I was at the press conference on July 15, 1985 when Rock arrived to reunite with Doris and prepare to film his episode the next day. The gathered press were, of course, stunned at Rock's gaunt and haggard appearance.  Doris offered to cancel the taping or to postpone it and care for Rock, but he insisted they go ahead the next day. 

The episode was not broadcast until shortly after Rock's October, 1985 passing . It aired for the first time on Sunday, October 13, 1985 and Doris filmed a special tribute to Rock that aired immediately before the episode.  

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32 minutes ago, Paulio said:

The episode was filmed in July of 1985 (July 16th) but did not air until the fall when the series began on CBN. The dates in IMDB are the dates the episodes were filmed, not when they aired. 

I was at the press conference on July 15, 1985 when Rock arrived to reunite with Doris and prepare to film his episode the next day. The gathered press were, of course, stunned at Rock's gaunt and haggard appearance.  Doris offered to cancel the taping or to postpone it and care for Rock, but he insisted they go ahead the next day. 

The episode was not broadcast until shortly after Rock's October, 1985 passing . It aired for the first time on Sunday, October 13, 1985 and Doris filmed a special tribute to Rock that aired immediately before the episode.  

Thanks Paul for sharing some behind-the-scenes info about this. Were all the episodes broadcast in the order in which they were filmed? Do you know the the air dates for the rest of the series?

I wonder what sort of articles were written about the series, especially about that first episode with Rock. What I mean is if the press were kind in their comments or if they made pointed remarks about Rock's appearance.

There was one episode I watched a few months ago on YouTube. Not the one with Rock, but I think it was the one with Denver. It was charming. However, the production values were not as good as they could be. After all this was a cable series with a limited budget. Still she was having a good time with the animals and her guests, all of this filmed on location in Carmel. It would be nice to see all the episodes.

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Good afternoon - Most of the episodes were aired in the order they were taped with the exception of Rock. The show premiere on Sunday,  October 6 and because of Rock's serious illness and uncertainty about whether he would live, Doris and Terry felt that launching with Rock's episode would seem as though there were sensationalizing the situation. 

In some file I have the exact air dates and the guests but cannot locate it immediately, but will try to. 

Doris promoted the show on Gary Collin's show (he did a multi-day interview), and it is on You Tube. She also did some press but because she was asked so many intrusive questions about Rock, she was reticent about doing a great deal. 

She was on the cover of Parade Magazine and did a n interview about the animals and there were a few others pieces.

This was around the time that she was saying no to "Dallas", "Dynasty", "Falcon Crest", etc. Later she was approached about replacing Barbara Bel Geddes as Miss Ellie but  declined and Donna Reed stepped in.

Doris was deliberate in not wanting it to be anything other than what it was. A family friendly, comfortable show that would help her to talk with friends about their mutual love for animals.  As you can see from the guest list, not many people said no and happily came up for a day or so to shoot their scenes. 

It did not have a big budget but that was a deliberate decision. Keeping it basic made everyone feel better about getting out the message they felt was very important. 

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This was from the episode with Tony Bennett and at almost 64, Doris looked amazing - as though she could have stepped onto the "Dynasty" set as Linda Evans' sister!!!

 

 

Sold Price: DORIS DAY ENSEMBLE FROM DORIS DAY'S BEST FRIENDS - Invalid date  PDT

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1 hour ago, Paulio said:

Good afternoon - Most of the episodes were aired in the order they were taped with the exception of Rock. The show premiere on Sunday,  October 6 and because of Rock's serious illness and uncertainty about whether he would live, Doris and Terry felt that launching with Rock's episode would seem as though there were sensationalizing the situation. 

In some file I have the exact air dates and the guests but cannot locate it immediately, but will try to. 

Doris promoted the show on Gary Collin's show (he did a multi-day interview), and it is on You Tube. She also did some press but because she was asked so many intrusive questions about Rock, she was reticent about doing a great deal. 

She was on the cover of Parade Magazine and did a n interview about the animals and there were a few others pieces.

This was around the time that she was saying no to "Dallas", "Dynasty", "Falcon Crest", etc. Later she was approached about replacing Barbara Bel Geddes as Miss Ellie but  declined and Donna Reed stepped in.

Doris was deliberate in not wanting it to be anything other than what it was. A family friendly, comfortable show that would help her to talk with friends about their mutual love for animals.  As you can see from the guest list, not many people said no and happily came up for a day or so to shoot their scenes. 

It did not have a big budget but that was a deliberate decision. Keeping it basic made everyone feel better about getting out the message they felt was very important. 

Gary Collins is a guest in one episode, so we can interpret that as a form of good old fashioned cross-promotion!

Yes it would be interesting to find out who the other guests might have been that were not mentioned on the IMDb.

In the interview with Vicki Lawrence from 1993, she is asked about Rock. This is eight years after his death. I am sure people were always asking her about him.

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