Make Room For Daddy: Season 6
One of the longest running family comedies of the 1950s, Make Room For Daddy ran from September 1953 until September 1964. The series was nominated for 14 Emmy Awards, winning four, including "Best Situation Comedy" and "Best Actor" for Danny.
This series was a reflection of Danny Thomas' real life as an entertainer and the problems created by his long absences from home. Even the title came from a phrase used in the Thomas household - whenever Danny returned from a tour, his two daughters (Marlo and Terre) had to shift bedrooms to Make Room For Daddy.
In the series, Danny plays nightclub entertainer Danny Williams, an occasionally loud and cantankerous, but ultimately warm and soft-hearted master of his domain. Constantly being upstaged by his bratty but loveable kids, played by Rusty Hamer, Angela Cartwright and Sherry Williams (whose role was taken over by Penny Parker), the ensemble also included beautiful Marjorie Lord as his understanding wife, and legendary character actor Hans Conried as irascible Uncle Tonoose.
Make Room For Daddy was unique for many reasons, including how it portrayed the family life of an entertainer dealing with both industry and ordinary family issues. Another reason was its frequent appearances by top celebrities. In this season 6 boxed-set, William Demarest, Jack Benny, Dinah Shore, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, Tennessee Ernie Ford, Shirley Jones, and Bob Hope are but a few legendary performers lending their talents. In addition, upcoming stars had recurring roles, such as Tony Bennett as Danny's cousin Steven from Toledo, and Annette Funicello as Italian exchange student Gina Minelli.
Make Room For Daddy served as a springboard for then little known talents like Joey Bishop and Bill Dana, both of whom wound up with their own Danny Thomas produced television series. And, of course, it gave birth to the first ever television spin off starring everyone's favorite sweet talking, small town sheriff, Andy Griffith (The Andy Griffith Show). Other Thomas produced series include the Dick Van Dyke Show, Gomer Pyle, Real McCoys, and The Mod Squad.
While Danny made a huge contribution to the industry with the shows he produced and shared his great love of entertaining with audiences in clubs like The Sand Hotel in Las Vegas and Harrah's in Lake Tahoe (to name a few), his greatest passion was the hospital he founded in 1962, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. St. Jude stands proudly in Memphis, TN, known worldwide as the crown jewel of pediatric medicine and a beacon of hope for children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases.