1966: Doris Day makes a spy movie

By 1966, anyone who could launch a spy project did. One of the more unusal such projects was Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s The Glass Bottom Boat, a comedy starring Doris Day.

Subtle, it wasn’t. Much of the humor was slapstick and looks like a cartoon come to life. That wasn’t surprising because the film was directed by Frank Tashlin, who years earlier had directed cartoon shorts for Warner Bros. The film’s trailer (with Hank Simms, the leading announcer for titles of Quinn Martin television shows, handling those honors here) is pretty representative of the movie itself:

Doris becomes involved with Rod Taylor, playing a Tony Stark-type playboy/inventor. Foreign powers are after Taylor’s work. The cast is full of people (Arthur Godfrey, Dick Martin, Eric Fleming, John McGiver, Edward Andrews) who were mostly seen on television by this time while still popping up in the occasional film role.

It also had a very odd, Tashlin-staged cameo. MGM’s big television property at the time was The Man From U.N.C.L.E. Paul Lynde, as a bumbling security officer, disguises himself as a woman and ends up. briefly encountering U.N.C.L.E.’s Napoleon Solo (Robert Vaughn).

One Response

  1. I saw the movie when I was 13 in the theatre and loved it. I now own it and it holds up beautifully as a very, very funny spoof with an exceptional cast. Anyone with preconceived notions about Doris Day should watch this film to see why she was second to none when it came to playing comedy.

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