TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JACK PAAR, THE
Jack Paar, Alexander King, Fred Demara, Billy Graham, Fidel Castro, Earl Grant, Marion Marlowe, Jose Melies, Ed Reimer, Virginia De Luce, Bob Crichton, Jimmy Hoffa
July 29, 1957- March 30,1962.
Announcer Earl Reimer who subs for Hugh Downs, opens the show.
Jack comes out on stage and immediately states that he always seems to be in his dressing room writing at the last minute.
Jack tells true story that once he shared a dressing room with a star cowboy who wore the most expensive clothes he had ever seen. When the star took off his costume Paar noticed that he was wearing the most ragged underwear he had ever seen!
Jack mentions that last nights program, with Bobby Kennedy, was the most exciting show he has ever done in the two years that the Tonight Show has been on the air. Second and third most memorable shows were with Fidel Castro and Billy Graham. Kennedy stated on the show that it was time to do something about Jimmy Hoffa.
Bob Grant is on next but Jack for a second cannot remember his name, which brings up a memory when he could not remember guest Marion Marlowe's name and had to stall for quite some time on live TV until someone could help him out.
Earl Grant sings "Gave Birth to the Blues."
Jack recounts the time when his daughter Randy's pet gold fish died. Jack gave it a proper burial. He wrapped the goldfish
in saran wrap, followed by a layer of silver foil and all placed into a match box. Wife Miriam, accompanied them to the backyard for a proper burial. Randy said,
"I'm sure he will survive before the ants get him."
Bob Crichton, author of "The Great Imposer" discusses his book.Fred Demara makes a rare in person appearance. They all discuss his remarkable career impersonating ever conceivable type of professional individual and living the part. Favorite impersonation was that of a Texas warden. Demara states that there was no justification for what he did. Fred states that he is now ready to end his impostor career.
Jack introduces Alexander King who discusses his new book, "May This House Be Saved From Tigers." Jack states what a warm and personable man King is who says that he believes in LOVE.
*Most of this series does not survive in any broadcast form. Kinescopes were discarded, burned, decomposed...whereabouts unknown. 2" Quadruplex Video Tape was expensive ($300 for a one hour reel), weighting 26 pounds, requiring great storage space. Video Tape could easily be erased and was used for new program recordings...retained briefly for a re-run and then erased or discarded. Legend has it that even Jack Paar himself hired a junk man to come to his home garage and paid to have JACK PAAR TONIGHT SHOW recordings discarded (reels of kinescopes and video tapes) that were now cluttering up his space.
During this era in television history archiving television programming was not a primary concern or vision, and considered an arcane pursuit.
ARCHIVAL TELEVISION AUDIO, INC. retains over 70 complete and excerpt JACK PAAR TONIGHT SHOW air checks (34 hours), including the complete Jack Paar's first anniversary telecast which was broadcast live from Havana Cuba (June 28, 1958). These originally recorded off the air pristine sound direct line 1/4" reel to reel audio tracks, recorded at the time of the original broadcasts, represent the only broadcast record of a "lost" visual telecast. ATA is the largest single repository (one collection), in the United Sates of Jack Paar Tonight Shows recordings. The combined archives of The Library of Congress, Paley Center for Media, and UCLA Film & Television retain a composite total of 13 hours of representative JACK PAAR TONIGHT SHOW broadcasts excerpts, all KINESCOPES (sound quality inferior to originally direct line 1/4" reel to reel home recordings at the time of the broadcast). No COMPLETE intact visual and audio broadcasts survive. There are no extant video taped surviving RECORDINGS of the JACK PAAR TONIGHT SHOW...not even an excerpt.
For four years and eight months Jack Paar reigned supreme as host of the TONIGHT SHOW with a crew of regulars, but only two stayed with him for the entire run; announcer Hugh Downs and band leader Jose Melis, a former army buddy. Familiar faces who appeared many times with Jack included Dody Goodman, Betty Johnson, Elsa Maxwell, Alexander King, Genevieve, Jack Douglas; and wife Reiko, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Hans Conreid, Peggy Cass, Cliff (Charley Weaver) Arquette, and Jonathan Winters.
Hugh Downs substituted for Jack Paar 79 times, more than any other substitute host. There were 20 different substitute hosts for Paar over the period of the series run. Joey Bishop substituted for Paar 31 times. Arlene Francis, 30 times, Jonathan Winters, 26 times, Orson Bean, 21 times and Johnny Carson 15 times. All together there were 243 broadcasts which had substitute hosts filling in for Paar during Jack Paar's TONIGHT SHOW tenure. The title of the late night broadcast changed to THE JACK PAAR SHOW which took effect on February 3, 1958. The first video-taped broadcast aired on January 5, 1959. The LAST LIVE broadcast was aired July 3, 1959. "Best of Paar " Re-runs began on July 10,1959. Beginning July 20, 1959 Jack Paar began taking off Monday nights & guest hosts would substitute for him (approximately on alternate Mondays). The first color broadcast aired on September 19, 1960.
Theme music, "Everything is Coming Up Roses" was first used beginning in the Fall of 1959.
Location broadcast telecasts of the program telecast away from the Hudson Theater in New York City occurred 14 times during this series run.
Jan. 13-17, 1958 Miami Beach, Florida
July 28, 1958 Havana,Cuba
Nov. 3-21, 1958 Hollywood, California
March 2-20, 1959 Hollywood, California
Nov. 10-12, 1959 Nassau, Bahamas (Video Tape)
Nov. 30- Dec. 10, 1959 Hollywood, California
March 28-April 1, 1960 London, England (Video Tape)
Nov.9-11, 1960 Hawaii (Video Tape) - b&w
Nov.14-24, 1960 Hollywood, California
March 21-24, 1961 London, England (Video Tape)
Sept. 12-14, 1961 West Berlin (Video Tape)
Nov. 14-17, 1961 Hollywood, California (Tape)
Nov. 21-24, 1961 Hollywood, California (Tape)
March 13-16, 1962 London, England (Video Tape)
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