Featured Star: Doris Day
As Jo Jordan in Young Man With A Horn (1950)

This sunny, shapely one-time big band singer parlayed her powerful pipes and peppy personality into a position of one of the most prolific and popular screen presences of the '50s and '60s. Born in a Cincinnati suburb, Doris Mary Ann Kappelhoff began displaying her vocal gifts at an early age, and a local radio appearance singing "Day After Day" inspired bandleader Barney Rapp to offer the teenager a contract and rechristen her for the stage.

By the time she reached her early '20s, she was established as Les Brown's female vocalist, and ultimately landed a solo recording contract with Columbia Records in 1947. Still, strife in her personal life had her ready to chuck it all when the opportunity came to replace a pregnant Betty Hutton in the Warners musical "Romance On The High Seas."

The public response encouraged the studio to continue to roll out sprightly vehicles for its new find like "By The Light Of The Silvery Moon," "Tea For Two" and "Calamity Jane." By the mid-'50s, Doris had left WB to freelance, and she had the opportunity to show her range as an actress with projects like "Love Me Or Leave Me," "The Man Who Knew Too Much" and "Teacher's Pet."

A brief career lull in the late '50s pointedly ended with the success of "Pillow Talk," and she would reach the crest of her popularity in a string of crowd-pleasing romantic comedies opposite "Pillow" co-star Rock Hudson ("Lover Come Back," "Send Me No Flowers") and James Garner ("The Thrill Of It All," "Move Over, Darling"). As the '60s waned, though, Doris's big-screen vogue followed suit; her last film appearance would come in 1968's "With Six You Get Eggroll".

Privately, she discovered after the sudden death in 1968 of her handler/third husband Martin Melcher that the bulk of the earnings over the prior 17 years had been sqaundered. She successfully sued Melcher's partner, and the CBS sitcom that she headlined from 1968-1973 helped recoup her losses. She essentially retired from acting at that point, directing her energies toward business concerns and animal-rights activism.

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