Hal March

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Hal March
HalmarchBW.jpg
Born Harold Mendelson
(1920-04-22)April 22, 1920
San Francisco, California
U.S.
Died January 19, 1970(1970-01-19) (aged 49)
Los Angeles, California
U.S.
Years active 1944-1969
Spouse(s) Candy Toxton aka "Susan Perry"
(1956-1970)

Hal March (April 22, 1920 – January 19, 1970) was a Jewish-American comedian and actor.

Early career[edit]

In 1944, March first came to note as part of a comedy team with Bob Sweeney. The duo had their own radio show for a time and performed, in the early 1950s, as "Sweeney & March." He also partnered with actor/comic Tom d'Andrea in the early years of television.[1][2]

The $64,000 Question[edit]

Earlier in his television career, he appeared on such shows as The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show, The Imogene Coca Show and I Love Lucy. However, he was best known for being the host of The $64,000 Question, which he helmed from 1955 to 1958. In addition to his hosting duties, March also sang a version of the show's theme music in 1956, entitled "Love is the Sixty-Four Thousand Dollar Question."[3]

As a result of the quiz show scandals, the show was canceled and, with the exception of a few film roles such as Hear Me Good and Send Me No Flowers, March was out of work for nearly a decade.

To keep busy, he appeared on several sitcoms in 1966 that are still widely rerun today. He played the father of Gidget's boyfriend Jeff in the Gidget episode "In and Out with the In-Laws" and the head of corrupt dance studio Renaldo's Dance Au Go Go in The Monkees episode "Dance Monkee, Dance". He also made appearances on the sitcoms Hey, Landlord and The Lucy Show and in the movie A Guide for the Married Man.[4]

March also starred in a 1961 unsold television pilot for a comedy called I Married a Dog, in which his life was constantly upset by his wife's pooch.[4] He was awarded two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, one for his radio work at 1560 Vine Street and another for his work in television at 6536 Hollywood Boulevard.

Death[edit]

March's career took a turn for the better in July 1969 when he began hosting the game show It's Your Bet. After completing approximately 13 weeks of taping, however, March complained that he was exhausted. Tests revealed that he had lung cancer, the result of years of chain smoking.

March died in January 1970 in Los Angeles at age 49. He is buried in Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery.

Personal life[edit]

March was married in 1956 to Candy Toxton. Toxton had two children, Steve March Tormé, and Melissa, from her previous marriage to Mel Tormé. Although he did not legally adopt them, March was stepfather to Steve and Melissa and went on to have three more children with Candy—Peter, Jeffrey and Victoria.

References[edit]

External links[edit]