The Courtship of Eddie's Father (film)

The Courtship of Eddie's Father is a 1963 American MGM romantic comedy film directed by Vincente Minnelli, and stars Glenn Ford as a widowed father and Ron Howard as his caring son. The film was based on a 1961 novel by Mark Toby, as was the ABC-TV series of the same name with Bill Bixby and Brandon Cruz, which ran from 1969 to 1972.

The Courtship of Eddie's Father
Theatrical release poster
Directed byVincente Minnelli
Produced byJoe Pasternak
Screenplay byJohn Gay
Based onThe Courtship of Eddie's Father
by Mark Toby
Music byGeorge Stoll
CinematographyMilton R. Krasner
Edited byAdrienne Fazan
  • Euterpe
  • Venice Productions
Distributed byMetro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
March 27, 1963
Running time
118 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$2,000,000 (U.S./Canada)[1]

Plot summary

Young Eddie Corbett (Ron Howard) tries his best to be a matchmaker for his widowed father, Tom (Glenn Ford). At first, sexy Dollye Daly (Stella Stevens) seems promising, but she ends up falling in love with and marrying Tom's friend and radio colleague, Norman Jones (Jerry Van Dyke).

Tom becomes attracted to a sophisticated socialite, Rita Behrens (Dina Merrill). They begin considering marriage, but Eddie takes an immediate dislike to Rita and she doesn't know how to deal with him, nor does she particularly wish to learn, and Tom eventually chooses his son over her.

Through all this, the Corbetts are supported by their new housekeeper, Mrs. Livingston (Roberta Sherwood), and by their divorced next-door neighbor, Elizabeth Marten (Shirley Jones). It takes a crisis for Tom to realize what has been under his nose all along.



Film rights to the novel were bought by MGM prior to publication for $100,000 in 1961.[2] The Chicago Tribune called the novel "deeply moving, and at the same time, very funny."[3]

Producer Joe Pasternak assigned John Gay to write the script and hired Glenn Ford to star.[4] Shirley Jones accepted her role in part because she did not have to sing.[5]

Roberta Sherwood, a nightclub singer and TV entertainer, made her film debut.[6]

Pasternak says he interviewed hundreds of children to play Eddie but as soon as he talked to Ron Howard "I knew he was right."[7]

The bowling alley sequence was filmed at the now-defunct Paradise Bowl, located at 9116 South Sepulveda Boulevard in Los Angeles (two miles north of LAX).

See also


  1. "Top Rental Features of 1963", Variety, 8 January 1964, p. 71. Please note figures are rentals as opposed to total gross.
  2. "Trade in Stories for Filming Brisk: Brando's Partner Re-signed; Old Globe Prepares for Bard" Scheuer, Philip K. Los Angeles Times 13 June 1961: 25.
  3. "Antidotes to the State of the World" Butcher, Fanny. Chicago Daily Tribune 6 Aug 1961: c3
  4. "Genevieve's Revue Short on Novelties: Jack Paar Discovery Tries 'Evening' on Intime Scale" Scheuer, Philip K. Los Angeles Times 21 March 1962: C15.
  5. "Hamlet Tired of Taking Pratfalls" Scott, John L. Los Angeles Times 15 July 1962: A5.
  6. "HOLLYWOOD CALENDAR: Anne Bancroft a Swinger in Tarzan League" Scott, John L. Los Angeles Times 17 March 1963: M8.
  7. "Sick Movies? Can't Do 'Em---Pasternak: Stories Written in Blood, Not Ink, Industry's Need" Scheuer, Philip K. Los Angeles Times 25 March 1963: C11.
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