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Item/Description: Vintage ca 1940s-1950s hand-signed, personalized autographed sepia-toned celebrity publicity still photograph of renowned radio performer AND television & movies/films actor AND nightclub singer/entertainer AND comic/comedian AND producer AND humanitarian Danny Thomas (1912-1991).
***The photograph depicts a younger Mr. Thomas at a time that appears to be during the midpoint of his long celebrity career.
***Though Mr. Thoms is perhaps best known for his acting role as “Danny Williams” on the 1953-1965 TV series "Make Room for Daddy”/”The Danny Thomas Show”, he was also a great humanitarian and the founder of the St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee, a charitable cause and organization dear to his heart as well as that of his likewise famous celebrity and social activist daughter, Marlo Thomas.
Autograph Details/Inscriptions: Original autograph, hand-signed in blue ink, with a personalized inscription, as follows: "Hello Leon Regards Danny Thomas"
***We once owned a Hollywood-themed restaurant/nightclub, with in excess of 2,000 autographs and entertainment memorabilia items on display. This autograph was once a part of that vast collection, which we have been gradually liquidating over the past several years!
Excerpted Packaging Information/Instructions; Product Details; Online Research Information/About.... (attributed to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Danny_Thomas ): “Danny Thomas (born Amos Muzyad Yakhoob Kairouz; January 6, 1912 – February 6, 1991) was an American nightclub comedian and television and film actor and producer, whose career spanned five decades. Thomas was best known for starring in the television sitcom ‘Make Room for Daddy’ (also known as ‘The Danny Thomas Show’). He was also the founder of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. He is the father of Marlo Thomas, Terre Thomas, and Tony Thomas.
Radio. Thomas first reached mass audiences on network radio in the 1940s playing shifty brother-in-law Amos in ‘The Bickersons’, which began as sketches on the music-comedy show ‘Drene Time’, co-hosted by Don Ameche and Frances Langford. Thomas also portrayed himself as a scatterbrained Lothario on this show. His other network radio work included a stint as ‘Jerry Dingle’ the postman on Fanny Brice's ‘The Baby Snooks Show’, and appearances on the popular NBC variety program, ‘The Big Show’, hosted by stage legend Tallulah Bankhead.
Films. In films, Thomas starred in ‘The Jazz Singer’ opposite the popular contemporary vocalist Peggy Lee, a 1952 remake of the 1927 original and played songwriter Gus Kahn opposite Doris Day in the 1951 film biography ‘I'll See You in My Dreams’.
‘Make Room for Daddy’. Thomas enjoyed a successful 13-year run (1953–1965) on ‘Make Room for Daddy’, later known as ‘The Danny Thomas Show’. On January 1, 1959, Thomas appeared with his ‘Make Room for Daddy’ child stars, Angela Cartwright and Rusty Hamer, in an episode of NBC's ‘The Ford Show’, Starring Tennessee Ernie Ford.
Cartwright played the role of Danny Williams's stepdaughter, Linda Williams, between 1957 and 1964, for 170 episodes. The on-and off-screen chemistry of Thomas and Cartwright was largely responsible for the success of the show. The show was produced at Desilu Studios, where Lucille Ball was doing ‘I Love Lucy’. The show featured several guest stars that went on to star in their own series, including Andy Griffith, Joey Bishop, and Bill Bixby.
Producer. Thomas became a successful television producer (with Sheldon Leonard and Aaron Spelling among his partners) of ‘The Dick Van Dyke Show, ‘The Andy Griffith Show’, and ‘The Mod Squad’. Thomas also produced three series for Walter Brennan: ‘The Real McCoys’, ‘The Tycoon’ and ‘The Guns of Will Sonnett’ on ABC during the late 1950s and 1960s. Thomas often appeared in cameos on shows he produced, including his portrayal of the tuxedoed, droll alien Kolak, from the planet Twilo, in ‘The Dick Van Dyke Show’ science-fiction spoof, ‘It May Look Like a Walnut’.
Thomas was responsible for Mary Tyler Moore's first ‘big break’ in acting. In 1961, Carl Reiner cast her in ‘The Dick Van Dyke Show’ after Thomas personally recommended Moore. He had remembered her as ‘the girl with three names’ whom he had turned down earlier, but rediscovered her after a lengthy search through photos and records.
Return to Television. In the early seventies, Thomas reunited most of his second ‘Daddy’ cast (Marjorie Lord, Rusty Hamer, and Angela Cartwright) for a short-lived update of the show, ‘Make Room for Granddaddy’. Premised around Danny and Kathy Williams caring for their grandson by daughter Terry, who was away with her husband on a long business assignment, the show lasted one season. He then starred in an NBC sitcom, ‘The Practice’ for two seasons, and after that ‘I'm a Big Girl Now’, which aired on ABC from 1980-81.
The last series in which Thomas was a headlining star was ‘One Big Family’, which aired in syndication during the 1986-1987 season. The situation comedy's premise was set around a semi-retired comedian whose grandchildren were orphaned after their parents were killed in a car accident.
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. As a ‘starving actor’ Thomas made a vow: If he found success, he would open a shrine dedicated to St Jude Thaddeus, the patron saint of hopeless causes. Thomas never forgot his promise to St. Jude, and after becoming a successful actor in the early 1950s, his wife joined him and began traveling the United States to help raise funds to build his dream - St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, a hospital for needy children, where they would be cared for regardless of race, religion or ability to pay - a hospital where no suffering child would be turned away. He fervently believed that ‘no child should die in the dawn of life.’ With help from Dr. Lemuel Diggs and close friend, Anthony Abraham, an auto magnate in Miami, Florida, Thomas founded the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee in 1962. Since its inception, St. Jude's has treated thousands of children for cancer and other catastrophic diseases. In 1996, Dr. Peter Doherty, PhD, and Dr. Rolf M. Zinkernagel, M.D., both of St. Jude's Immunology Department, were the co-recipients of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for their key discoveries on how the immune system works to kill virus-infected cells.”
Format: Black & white (B&W) slightly sepia-toned, matte-finish publicity still photograph.
Age/Period: Vintage - ca. 1940s-1950s
Size/Measurements: Autographed photo measures 8"W X 10"H
Quantity: One (1)
Condition: Autograph signature remains crisp, clear and strong! Main body of photograph is in overall very good condition. Lower left and right corners/sections exhibit moderate creasing and bending. Portions of white borders evince edge-wear and chipping. The middle of the bottom edge evinces a circular crease, a portion of which is partially “nicked”/torn but intact. The majority of the foregoing condition factors are not apparent when photo is framed, with the other(s) being only very minimally so.