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Daktari Clarence Judy 1967.JPG
Clarence and Judy
GenreChildren's drama
Created byArt Arthur
Ivan Tors
Written byWilliam Clark
Meyer Dolinsky
Lawrence L. Goldman
Alf Harris
John Hogan
Jack Jacobs
Robert Lees
Robert Lewin
D.D. Oldland
S.S. Schweitzer
Stanley H. Silverman
Malvin Wald
Directed byPaul Landres
Andrew Marton
Otto Lang
StarringMarshall Thompson
Cheryl Miller
Hari Rhodes
Yale Summers
Hedley Mattingly
Theme music composerShelly Manne
Henry Vars
ComposersHerbert Doerfel
Shelly Manne
Henry Vars
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons4
No. of episodes89 (list of episodes)
Executive producerIvan Tors
ProducerLeonard B. Kaufman
CinematographyWilliam A. Fraker
Fred Mandl
Paul Ivano
Richard Moore
EditorGeorge Hively
Running time45–48 minutes
Production companiesIvan Tors Productions
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Television
DistributorMetro-Goldwyn-Mayer Television
Warner Bros. Television
Original networkCBS
Picture formatMetrocolor
Audio formatMonaural
Original releaseJanuary 11, 1966 (1966-01-11) –
January 15, 1969 (1969-01-15)
Preceded byClarence, the Cross-Eyed Lion

Daktari (Swahili for "doctor") is an American family drama series that aired on CBS between 1966 and 1969. The series is an Ivan Tors Films Production in association with MGM Television starring Marshall Thompson as Dr. Marsh Tracy, a veterinarian at the fictional Wameru Study Center for Animal Behavior in East Africa.


The show follows the work of Dr. Tracy, his daughter Paula (Cheryl Miller), and his staff, who frequently protect animals from poachers and local officials. Tracy's pets, a cross-eyed lion named Clarence and a chimpanzee named Judy, were also popular characters.[1]

Daktari was based upon the 1965 film Clarence, the Cross-Eyed Lion, which also stars Thompson as Dr. Tracy and Miller as his daughter. The concept was developed by producer Ivan Tors, inspired by the work of Dr. Antonie Marinus Harthoorn and his wife Sue at their animal orphanage in Nairobi.[2] Dr. Harthoorn helped invent the capture gun, and was a tireless campaigner for animal rights. He was known as Daktari by the local Swahili people.

On the series, Clarence did not do all his own stunts; he had a stand-in. Leo (previously known as Zamba), another lion trained by Ralph Helfer, doubled for Clarence whenever any trucks were involved because Clarence was frightened by these vehicles. Leo had his own makeup artist apply cosmetic scarring like Clarence's so that he would resemble Clarence in closeups. An inside joke from the preview trailer for the movie Clarence, the Cross-Eyed Lion was that Leo the MGM logo was not related to Clarence (in addition to similar appearances, the lions had similar temperaments).

Another less friendly lion, also named Leo, doubled for Clarence in some scenes. He was used only for the snarling scenes and scenes not involving proximity with humans. His ferocity was genuine, the result of physical abuse by his previous owners.

In the show's final season, child star Erin Moran joined the cast as Jenny Jones, a seven-year-old orphan who becomes part of the Tracy household.


Judy the Chimp also portrayed "Debbie the Bloop" on Lost in Space.

Clarence the Lion died at the age of 7 on July 14, 1969, six months after Daktari was last telecast on CBS. When he was not being filmed, the lion was booked as an attraction at expositions and died in Peoria, Illinois, where he was scheduled to appear at the "Heart of Illinois Fair".[3]

Notable guest stars over the years included Louis Gossett Jr., Sterling Holloway, Bruce Bennett, Virginia Mayo, Chips Rafferty and Paul Winfield.

Bruno the Bear also appeared as a guest star before he became the main bear playing the title role in the later Ivan Tors series, Gentle Ben.


The series was broadcast in four seasons, the first in early 1966, and the last three each beginning in September of 1966, 1967, and 1968.

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
118January 11, 1966 (1966-01-11)May 17, 1966 (1966-05-17)
229September 13, 1966 (1966-09-13)April 11, 1967 (1967-04-11)
327September 5, 1967 (1967-09-05)March 12, 1968 (1968-03-12)
415September 25, 1968 (1968-09-25)January 15, 1969 (1969-01-15)

Season 1 (1966)[edit]

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
11"The Elephant Thieves"Otto LangRobert LewinJanuary 11, 1966 (1966-01-11)
22"Predator of Wameru"Paul LandresMeyer Dolinsky, Stephen KandelJanuary 18, 1966 (1966-01-18)
33"The Killer Lion"Otto LangWilliam ClarkJanuary 25, 1966 (1966-01-25)
44"Adventure of the Lion Cubs"Paul LandresWilliam ClarkFebruary 1, 1966 (1966-02-01)
55"Trail of the Cheetah"Andrew MartonAlan Caillou, Stephen KandelFebruary 8, 1966 (1966-02-08)
66"Leopard of Madla Gorge"Otto LangArthur WeissFebruary 15, 1966 (1966-02-15)
77"The Diamond Smugglers"Paul LandresMalvin WaldMarch 1, 1966 (1966-03-01)
88"The Chimp Who Went Ape"Otto LangRobert LewinMarch 1966 (1966-03)
99"The Killer Dog"Paul LandresWilliam ClarkMarch 15, 1966 (1966-03-15)
1010"Return of the Killer: Part 1"Andrew MartonRichard CarlsonMarch 22, 1966 (1966-03-22)
1111"Return of the Killer: Part 2"Andrew MartonRichard CarlsonMarch 29, 1966 (1966-03-29)
1212"The Man-Eater of Wameru"Paul LandresMeyer DolinskyApril 5, 1966 (1966-04-05)
1313"Crisis at the Compound"Paul LandresMalvin WaldApril 12, 1966 (1966-04-12)
1414"The Hostages"Andrew MartonStephen KandelApril 19, 1966 (1966-04-19)
1515"Judy and the Hyena"Paul LandresWilliam Clark, S.S. SchweitzerApril 26, 1966 (1966-04-26)
1616"Wall of Flames: Part 1"Andrew MartonStephen KandelMay 3, 1966 (1966-05-03)
1717"Wall of Flames: Part 2"Andrew MartonStephen KandelMay 10, 1966 (1966-05-10)
1818"Judy and the Gunrunners"Andrew MartonRichard CarlsonMay 17, 1966 (1966-05-17)

Season 2 (1966–67)[edit]

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
191"The Return of Clarence"Paul LandresWilliam ClarkSeptember 13, 1966 (1966-09-13)
202"Deadline to Kill"John FloreaAndy WhiteSeptember 20, 1966 (1966-09-20)
213"Daktari's Last Hunt"John FloreaStephen KandelSeptember 27, 1966 (1966-09-27)
224"Judy's Hour of Peril"John FloreaArthur WeissOctober 4, 1966 (1966-10-04)
235"Cheetah at Large"Paul LandresMalvin WaldOctober 11, 1966 (1966-10-11)
246"The Test"Paul LandresLawrence Louis GoldmanOctober 18, 1966 (1966-10-18)
257"Born to Die"John FloreaAlf Harris & Jack JacobsOctober 25, 1966 (1966-10-25)
268"The Trial"Paul LandresWilliam ClarkNovember 1, 1966 (1966-11-01)
279"Death in the African Sun"Paul LandresD.D. OldlandNovember 15, 1966 (1966-11-15)
2810"Revenge of the Leopard"John FloreaCornelius BallardNovember 22, 1966 (1966-11-22)
2911"Shoot to Kill"Paul LandresMalvin WaldNovember 29, 1966 (1966-11-29)
3012"Cry for Help"Paul LandresJ.E. Selby (aka Robert Lees) & Stanley H. SilvermanDecember 6, 1966 (1966-12-06)
3113"Clarence the Killer"Paul LandresRobert LewinDecember 20, 1966 (1966-12-20)
3214"The Chimp Who Cried Wolf"John FloreaTBADecember 27, 1966 (1966-12-27)
3315"Little Miss Nightingale"Marshall ThompsonRobert L. Goodwin & Marvin WaldJanuary 3, 1967 (1967-01-03)
3416"Judy and the Gorilla"Paul LandresMalvin WaldJanuary 10, 1967 (1967-01-10)
3517"House of Lions"John FloreaTBAJanuary 17, 1967 (1967-01-17)
3618"Undercover Judy"TBATBAJanuary 24, 1967 (1967-01-24)
3719"Countdown for Paula"John FloreaTBAJanuary 31, 1967 (1967-01-31)
3820"Terror in the Bush"Paul LandresMaria Little & Jim SimmonsFebruary 7, 1967 (1967-02-07)
3921"Judy and the Baby Elephant"Dick ModerMalvin WaldFebruary 14, 1967 (1967-02-14)
4022"A Bullet for Hedley"Paul LandresAlan CaillouFebruary 21, 1967 (1967-02-21)
4123"Judy the Poacher"Lawrence J. GoldmanTBAFebruary 28, 1967 (1967-02-28)
4224"Goodbye, Mike Makula"Marshall ThompsonTBAMarch 7, 1967 (1967-03-07)
4325"Operation Springtime"Paul LandresJ.E. Selby (aka Robert Lees) & Stanley H. SilvermanMarch 14, 1967 (1967-03-14)
4426"King Clarence"Paul LandresAlf Harris & Jack JacobsMarch 21, 1967 (1967-03-21)
4527"The Long Hunt"TBATBAMarch 28, 1967 (1967-03-28)
4628"Judy and the Vulture"Paul LandresWorley ThorneApril 4, 1967 (1967-04-04)
4729"A Cub Called Danger"Dick ModerJohn Fraley HoganApril 11, 1967 (1967-04-11)

Season 3 (1967–68)[edit]

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
481"Judy and the Astro-Chimp"Paul LandresMalvin WaldSeptember 5, 1967 (1967-09-05)
492"The Execution"Dick ModerLawrence Louis GoldmanSeptember 12, 1967 (1967-09-12)
503"Crime Wave at Wameru"Paul LandresStory by : Ted Herbert
Teleplay by : Lawrence Louis Goldman
September 19, 1967 (1967-09-19)
514"Goodbye, Wameru"Dick ModerMalvin WaldSeptember 26, 1967 (1967-09-26)
525"Killer Tribe"Paul LandresRobert LewinOctober 3, 1967 (1967-10-03)
536"The Scent of Fear"Dick ModerRichard CarlsonOctober 10, 1967 (1967-10-10)
547"The Return of the Phantom"Paul LandresS.S. SchweitzerOctober 17, 1967 (1967-10-17)
558"Countdown for Judy"John FloreaWilliam ClarkOctober 24, 1967 (1967-10-24)
569"Judy and the Jailbirds"Paul LandresStory by : Ted Herbert
Teleplay by : Malvin Wald
October 31, 1967 (1967-10-31)
5710"One of Our Cubs Is Missing"Dick ModerAlan CaillouNovember 7, 1967 (1967-11-07)
5811"Judy and the Thoroughbred"John FloreaJack JacobsNovember 14, 1967 (1967-11-14)
5912"The Return of Ethel and Albert"Paul LandresWilliam ClarkNovember 21, 1967 (1967-11-21)
6013"Judy and the Wizard"Paul LandresAlf Harris & Jack JacobsNovember 28, 1967 (1967-11-28)
6114"Clarence's Love-In"Dick ModerMalvin WaldDecember 5, 1967 (1967-12-05)
6215"The Elephant Raid: Part 1"John FloreaRichard TuberDecember 12, 1967 (1967-12-12)
6316"The Elephant Raid: Part 2"John FloreaRichard TuberDecember 19, 1967 (1967-12-19)
6417"Miracle in the Jungle"Paul LandresMalvin WaldDecember 26, 1967 (1967-12-26)
6518"Riddle of the Bush"Dick ModerRobert E. SmithJanuary 2, 1968 (1968-01-02)
6619"The Big Switch"Paul LandresStory by : Ted Herbert
Teleplay by : John Hogan
January 9, 1968 (1968-01-09)
6720"License to Kill"John FloreaStory by : Ted Herbert
Teleplay by : William Clark
January 16, 1968 (1968-01-16)
6821"Judy Strikes Back"Paul LandresJohn HoganJanuary 23, 1968 (1968-01-23)
6922"The Killer Cub"Paul LandresStory by : Ted Herbert
Teleplay by : Malvin Wald
January 30, 1968 (1968-01-30)
7023"Toto the Great"John FloreaJohn Hogan & George PierreFebruary 13, 1968 (1968-02-13)
7124"The Lion Killer"John FloreaLawrence Louis GoldmanFebruary 20, 1968 (1968-02-20)
7225"The Killer of Wameru"Paul LandresJ.E. Selby (aka Robert Lees) & Stanley H. SilvermanFebruary 27, 1968 (1968-02-27)
7326"The Monster of Wameru"John FloreaStory by : Ted Herbert
Teleplay by : Malvin Wald
March 5, 1968 (1968-03-05)
7427"The Will to Live"Paul LandresStory by : Ted Herbert & Malvin Wald
Teleplay by : Malvin Wald
March 12, 1968 (1968-03-12)

Season 4 (1968–69)[edit]

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
751"A Family for Jenny"Don McDougallTed Herbert & Malvin WaldSeptember 25, 1968 (1968-09-25)
762"Clarence, the Lion-Hearted"TBATBAOctober 2, 1968 (1968-10-02)
773"African Heritage"TBATBAOctober 9, 1968 (1968-10-09)
784"The Outsider"TBATBAOctober 16, 1968 (1968-10-16)
795"Strike Like a Lion"TBATBAOctober 23, 1968 (1968-10-23)
806"Adam and Jenny"Paul LandresStory by : Ted Herbert & Malvin Wald
Teleplay by : Malvin Wald
October 30, 1968 (1968-10-30)
817"A Man's Man"Paul LandresJ.E. Selby (aka Robert Lees)November 6, 1968 (1968-11-06)
828"The Runaways"TBATBANovember 13, 1968 (1968-11-13)
839"African Showdown"TBATBANovember 20, 1968 (1968-11-20)
8410"Once Upon a Fang"Paul LandresLawrence L. GoldmanNovember 27, 1968 (1968-11-27)
8511"The Divining Rods"Paul LandresJack JacobsDecember 11, 1968 (1968-12-11)
8612"The Discovery"TBATBADecember 18, 1968 (1968-12-18)
8713"Jungle Heartbeat"TBATBAJanuary 1, 1969 (1969-01-01)
8814"A Tiger's Tale"TBATBAJanuary 8, 1969 (1969-01-08)
8915"Judy Comes Home"TBATBAJanuary 15, 1969 (1969-01-15)

Broadcast history and Nielsen ratings[edit]

The original broadcasts in the US were on CBS.

Season Time slot (ET) Rank Rating[4]
1965–66 Tuesday at 7:30 pm 14 23.9
1966–67 7 23.4 (Tied with Bewitched and The Beverly Hillbillies)
1967–68 Not in the Top 30
1968–69 Wednesday at 7:30 pm

According to IMDB it was also broadcast on TV channels in the UK, the Netherlands, Germany and (dubbed) in France.

Production notes[edit]


According to the show's closing credits, it was "filmed in Africa and Africa U.S.A.", a 600-acre (2.4 km2) wild-animal ranch created by animal trainers Ralph and Toni Helfer in Soledad Canyon 40 mi (64 km) north of Los Angeles.[5] Ralph Helfer was the animal coordinator of the show. Leonard B. Kaufman, the producer, wrote in liner notes for Shelly Manne's Daktari that he shot the series on location close to a ranch once owned by Antonio Pintos' father in Mozambique.[6] Indeed, the outdoor scenes involving the actors were shot in the Africa, U.S.A. compound in California, with footage of African landscape and animals in between to get the African look and feel. Some of the animals shown were, however, at odds with the location – a tiger (not native to Africa) is shown in the starting credit sequence, as well as an Indian elephant.

Other indoor and some outdoor scenes of the animal hospital were shot in Ivan Tors' studios in Florida.


The show had distinctive theme and incidental music, a fusion of jazz and African influences, conducted by American jazz drummer Shelly Manne. Manne released the associated record, Daktari: Shelly Manne Performs and Conducts His Original Music for the Hit TV Show, on the Atlantic label in 1967. On the album, Mike Wofford plays a tack piano to evoke an African sound, and Manne is joined by percussionists Emil Richards, Larry Bunker, Frank Carlson, and Victor Feldman. According to the record liner notes, Manne and fellow percussionists play ankle and wrist jingles, Thai mouth organs, angklungs, ocarinas, vibraphones, tympani, and different kinds of marimbas.


The series featured several Land Rover four-wheel-drive cars and also a Jeep Gladiator pickup truck with an iconic zebra-striped paint job. Corgi Toys produced a green and black zebra-striped toy version of a Land Rover, available in several different action sets.[7]

Home media[edit]

Warner Bros. has released all four seasons on DVD in Region 1 via their Warner Archive Collection manufacture-on-demand series.[8][9][10][11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Woolery, George W. (1985). Children's Television: The First Thirty-Five Years, 1946-1981, Part II: Live, Film, and Tape Series. The Scarecrow Press. pp. 135–136. ISBN 0-8108-1651-2.
  2. ^ Hart, Susanne (1969). Life with Daktari: Two Vets in East Africa. Atheneum. p. 35.
  3. ^ "TV Daktari's Clarence The Lion Is Dead", Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, July 15, 1969, p1
  4. ^ Brooks, Tim; Marsh, Earle (2007). The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows 1946-Present (Ninth Edition). Ballantine Books. p. 1684. ISBN 978-0-345-49773-4.
  5. ^ "Vasquez Rocks". Bonanza: Scenery of the Ponderosa. Retrieved on July 15, 2013.
  6. ^ Leonard B. Kaufman, liner notes for Shelly Manne, "Daktari", Atlantic Records SD 8157
  7. ^ CORGI GS7 & CORGI GS14 DAKTARI corgitoys.free.fr, accessed 2021-05-04
  8. ^ Lambert, David (November 15, 2011). "Daktari - 'The Complete 1st Season' is Now Available from the Warner Archive" Archived 2012-09-18 at the Wayback Machine. TVShowsOnDVD.com.
  9. ^ Lambert, David (March 12, 2013). "Daktari - Packaging Pics for 'The Complete 2nd Season' Shows It's 2 Half-Season Sets Bundled" Archived 2013-03-15 at the Wayback Machine. TVShowsOnDVD.com.
  10. ^ MOD Release for 'The Complete 3rd Season' is Now Available Archived 2014-06-27 at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ The 4th and Final Season is Coming to DVD Very Soon Archived 2015-05-27 at the Wayback Machine

External links[edit]