She and her son Terry Melcher (along with a partner) co-own the Cypress Inn in Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA, a small "Hotel California-esque" inn built in a beautiful Mediterranean motif.
According to her autobiography, she got the nickname Clara Bixby when Billy De Wolfe told her, on the set of Tea for Two (1950), that she didn't look like a "Doris Day", but more like a "Clara Bixby", To this day, that remains her nickname among a close circle of old friends, such as Van Johnson.
Rock Hudson called her "Eunice" because he said that whenever he thought of her as Eunice, it made him laugh.
She turned down the role of Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate (1967), which went to Anne Bancroft.
Is referenced in the song "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" by pop band Wham!, a single that hit Billboard's #1 in 1984.
When her husband and manager of 17 years, Martin Melcher, died suddenly in April 1968, she professed not to have known that he had negotiated a multimillion-dollar deal with CBS to launch The Doris Day Show (1968) the following fall. After an abbreviated period of mourning, she went ahead with the series, which ran successfully for five seasons.
It was during the location filming of The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956) when she saw how camels, goats and other "animal extras" in a marketplace scene were being treated that began her lifelong commitment to preventing animal abuse.
Is referenced in the 1989 song "We Didn't Start the Fire" by Billy Joel.
Biography in: "Who's Who in Comedy" by Ronald L. Smith. Pg. 133-134. New York: Facts on File, 1992. ISBN 0816023387
In June 2004 she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by George W. Bush. She did not attend the White House award ceremony because of her intense fear of flying.
Is referenced in the 1970 song "Dig It" by The Beatles.
Is referenced in the 1985 song "Wrap Her Up" by Elton John.
In order to make a political statement regarding the platform of the Canadian Alliance Party, in 2000 Canadian satirist Rick Mercer launched an attempt to hold a national referendum on the question of whether or not Stockwell Day should be forced to change his first name to "Doris". Within days, he had the required number of signatures under the Alliance Parties current platform to launch a federal referendum. According to her publicist, Doris was amused by this.
Was named the top box-office star of 1963 by the Motion Picture Herald, based on an annual poll of exhibitors as to the drawing power of movie stars at the box-office, conducted by Quigley Publications.
Her son Terry Melcher had rented a house at 10050 Cielo Drive in Bel Air, CA, where Sharon Tate and her friends were murdered by the Charles Manson "Family". On March 23, 1969, Charles Manson had visited the house looking for Melcher, a music producer and composer who had worked with The Beach Boys, Bobby Darin and The Byrds. The house was now sub-leased by Tate, and her photographer told Manson to leave by "the back alley", possibly giving Manson a motive for the later attack. Melcher had auditioned Manson for a recording contract but rejected him, and there was a rumor after the murders that Manson had intended to send a message to Melcher, a theory that police later discounted.
In 2005 "Premiere" magazine ranked her as #24 on a list of the Greatest Movie Stars of All Time in their Stars in Our Constellation feature.
Is referenced in the song "Life Is a Rock (But the Radio Rolled Me)" by Reunion.
Reportedly did not like profanity. As a recording artist, she would require anyone who swore to put a quarter in a "swear jar". In addition, she does not allow her songs to be used in movies that contain swear words.
Has often cited Calamity Jane (1953) as her personal favorite of the 39 movies she appeared in, and Where Were You When the Lights Went Out? (1968)--which she referred to as "an "alleged comedy"--as her least favorite.
Her mother named her after her favorite silent film star, Doris Kenyon. By coincidence, in the mid-'70s when Day wrote her autobiography, Kenyon was her neighbor on Crescent Drive in Beverly Hills, CA.
Her great-niece Pia Douwes is also a critically acclaimed actress.
Is referenced in the 1994 song "Dirty Epic" by Underworld.
Referenced in the song "What Do We Do? We Fly!" from the musical "Do I Hear a Waltz?" by Richard Rodgers and Stephen Sondheim.
Has a 1982 hit song, by the hugely popular Dutch ska-pop band Doe Maar, named after her.
Gave birth to her only child at age 19, a son Terrence "Terry" Jorden (aka Terry Melcher) on February 8, 1942. Child's father was her first ex-husband, Al Jorden. Terry was later adopted by his stepfather and became known as Terry Melcher.
Her only British appreciation club is called "Friends of Doris Day" and is based in Oxford, England.
Is a staunch supporter of the Republican Party, and told the press she voted for George W. Bush in the 2000 presidential election.
Telephoned the White House to personally explain to President George W. Bush her reasons for not attending her award presentation in June 2004, and said she was praying hard that he would be elected to a second term of office in November.
After her Pillow Talk (1959) co-star Rock Hudson died of AIDS in 1985, Day told the press that she had never known he was a homosexual.
In Italy, most of her films were dubbed by Rosetta Calavetta. She was occasionally dubbed by Dhia Cristiani, Rina Morelli and once by Lydia Simoneschi in The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956).
In Germany, Edith Schneider dubbed her voice in most of her films.
Profiled in the book, "Film Fatales: Women in Espionage Films and Television, 1962-1973", by Thomas Lisanti and Louis Paul (McFarland, 2002).
Is referenced on every chorus of Ringo Starr's last top 40 release in 1999, "La De Da".
Childhood idol was Ginger Rogers, with whom she starred in Storm Warning (1951).
Vocal supporter and close friends with President Ronald Reagan.
Smoked 2-1/2 packs of cigarettes a day until about 1951.
Briefly dated Ronald Reagan - with whom she co-starred in Storm Warning (1951) and The Winning Team (1952) - shortly after his divorce from Jane Wyman when she and Reagan were contract players at Warner Brothers. Day told him that he was so good at talking that he should be touring the country making speeches. At the time, the future Republican President was a Democrat.
Has a fear of flying that stemmed from tours with Bob Hope in the 1940s that resulted in some close calls in impenetrable winter weather. She almost turned down her role in Alfred Hitchcock's The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956) because it was to be filmed in London and Marrakesh. Her husband and manager, Martin Melcher, talked her into accepting it.
Has performed two songs in films that won the Academy Award for Best Original Song: "Secret Love" from Calamity Jane (1953) and "Que Sera, Sera" from The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956). Introduced four songs that were nominated: "It's Magic" from Romance on the High Seas (1948), "It's a Great Feeling" from It's a Great Feeling (1949), "I'll Never Stop Loving You" from Love Me or Leave Me (1955) and "Julie" from Julie (1956).
Daughter of William (1892-1967) and Alma (née Welz) Kappelhoff (1895-1976). Both were born and raised in Ohio to German-born parents.
Awarded two Stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Motion Pictures at 6735 Hollywood Blvd. and for Recording at 6278 Hollywood Blvd.
Went to the same Cincinnati ballroom dance studio as a child as Vera-Ellen. Their parents used to carpool together to the dance studio.
Her dreams of a dancing career were dashed when a car accident on October 13, 1937, badly damaged her legs. She spent most of her teenage years wheelchair-bound and during this time began singing on the radio.
The film The Children's Hour (1961) was constructed with both Day and Katharine Hepburn as the two leading ladies. However both actresses backed out due to scheduling conflicts and as a result Shirley MacLaine was cast in Hepburn's role and Audrey Hepburn was cast in Day's role.
Her second husband was saxophone player and former child actor George Weidler. His sister was MGM child actress Virginia Weidler.
In 1976 she married Barry Comden, 12 years her junior. They met at the Beverly Hills Old World Restaurant where he was the maitre d'. In the 1970s Comden opened an Old World restaurant in Westwood and supervised the construction of another restaurant, Tony Roma's, in Palm Springs, CA. It was Comden who came up with the idea for a line of pet food that would feature Doris' name. Doris Day Distributing Co. unraveled mainly because of a pyramid-type scheme that the couple had been unaware of. They lived in Carmel but Comden complained that Day preferred the company of her dogs more than him and they divorced in 1981.
Her first marriage at age 17 to trombone player Al Jordan, whom she met while both were performing in Barney Rapp's band, was extremely unhappy. They divorced within two years amid reports of Jordan's alcoholism and abuse of the young star. Despondent and feeling his life had little meaning after the much publicized divorce, Jordan later committed suicide.
While performing for a local radio station, she was approached by band leader Barney Rapp. He felt that her name, Kappelhoff, was too harsh and awkward and that she should change her name to something more pleasant. The name "Day" was suggested by Rapp from one of the songs in Doris' repertoire, "Day by Day". She didn't like the name at first, feeling that it sounded too much like a burlesque performer.
In March 1989 she was scheduled to present, along with Patrick Swayze and Marvin Hamlisch, the Best Original Score Oscar at The 61st Annual Academy Awards (1989), but she suffered a deep leg cut and was unable to attend. She had been walking through the gardens of the hotel she owns when she cut her leg on a sprinkler. The cut required stitches.
Received a Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2004, and a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006.
Oscar Levant quipped, "I've been around so long, I knew Doris Day before she was a virgin.". This was first said by Groucho Marx.
Underwent a hysterectomy during the filming of Julie (1956) after being diagnosed with a tumor the size of a grapefruit that was growing into her intestines.
Ex-mother-in-law of Jacqueline Carlin. Grandmother of Ryan Melcher (born 1983).
Tinseltown folklore insists she was "discovered" by director Michael Curtiz, when she sang at a Hollywood party in 1948. At the time, Curtiz was seeking a singer/actress to replace Betty Hutton, who had become pregnant and had to back out of Romance on the High Seas (1948), which Curtiz was to direct.
As of June 2008 she was managing the Doris Day Animal League in Carmel, CA, which advocates homes and proper care of household pets.
Her only child, Terry Melcher, died of melanoma on November 19, 2004, aged 62.
She turned down the role of Maria in The Sound of Music (1965) with the explanation: "I'm too American to play a nun from Austria.".
Co-starred with Gig Young in four films: Young at Heart (1954), Teacher's Pet (1958), The Tunnel of Love (1958), and That Touch of Mink (1962).
Co-starred with Elisabeth Fraser in four films: Young at Heart (1954), The Tunnel of Love (1958), The Glass Bottom Boat (1966), and The Ballad of Josie (1967).
Co-starred with Gordon MacRae in five films: Tea for Two (1950), The West Point Story (1950), On Moonlight Bay (1951), Starlift (1951), and By the Light of the Silvery Moon (1953).
Co-starred with Rock Hudson and Tony Randall in three films: Pillow Talk (1959), Lover Come Back (1961), and Send Me No Flowers (1964). In all three, Day and Hudson played love interests while Randall played Hudson's close friend.
Co-starred with ex-partner Jack Carson in three films: Romance on the High Seas (1948), My Dream Is Yours (1949) and It's a Great Feeling (1949).
Third husband Martin Melcher produced 18 of her movies between 1956 and his death in 1968, as well as working as executive producer on the first season of her CBS series The Doris Day Show (1968). In her 1975 autobiography she revealed that, by the mid-'60s Melcher was signing her to films without asking her whether or not she actually wanted to do them first. She did not like the scripts for Do Not Disturb (1965), The Ballad of Josie (1967), Caprice (1967) and Where Were You When the Lights Went Out? (1968), but was forced to do the movies because Melcher had control over her career. She also did not find out he had signed her up for "The Doris Day Show" until after his death.
She was the last surviving cast member of Young at Heart (1954).
She and Mary Wickes appeared together in four movies: On Moonlight Bay (1951), I'll See You in My Dreams (1951), By the Light of the Silvery Moon (1953), and It Happened to Jane (1959). Wickes also guest-starred on the first season of Day's TV series The Doris Day Show (1968).
For many years it was uncertain whether she was born in 1922 or 1924, with Day herself reportedly believing her birth year was the latter and giving her age accordingly. It wasn't until April 3, 2017--her 95th, not 93rd, birthday--that her birth certificate was found by the Associated Press, which confirmed she was born in 1922.
Was one of the original choices to play "Jessica Fletcher" when Murder, She Wrote (1984) was being cast. However, she turned down the role due to the fact that she had been retired from acting for over a decade.
Paternal granddaughter of Frank (1843-1907) and Agnes (née Kreimer) Kappelhoff (1853-1916). Both were born in Germany and died in the state of Ohio.
Maternal granddaughter of William (1860-1908) and Anna (née Mann) Welz (1862-1932). They were born in Germany and died in the state of Ohio.
She was the last surviving cast member of Calamity Jane (1953) .
When Quigley Publications ranked the top box office draws of the 20th century, Doris Day was the highest-rated actress, having been among the Top Ten Stars list 10 times between 1951 and 1966, placing #1 four times. Other high-ranking females included Shirley Temple, Betty Grable and Elizabeth Taylor.
On August 12, 2018, she was honored with a day of her film work during the TCM Summer Under The Stars.
As per her last wishes, there was no funeral or graveside service. She was cremated and her ashes scattered in Carmel, California.