Mike Douglas

TV Talk Show Host


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his three-hour Archive interview, Mike Douglas (1925-2006) talks about his start in television as the host of the local Chicago series Hi Ladies and discusses his career as a singer and a voiceover artist (he provided the singing voice for Prince Charming in the Disney classic, Cinderella.)  He recounts his numerous appearances on television, including work as a regular of Kay Kyser's Kollege of Musical Knowledge and speaks in great detail about his long-running stint as the host of The Mike Douglas Show. He describes moving the show from Ohio to Pennsylvania and finally to California and how each locale affected the program. Douglas details his "casting" by producer Woody Fraser, the rigorous production schedule, and notable guests including Aretha Franklin, Judy Garland, John Lennon and a 2-year-old golf prodigy named Tiger Woods. Karen Herman conducted the interview  on March 31, 2005 in Beverly Hills, CA.

"The main thing I was there for was to talk to the guests, make it interesting, and draw whatever you could out of them. Never top them, never belittle them, never say, 'You've been into something, you're not right today.' No put downs. It worked for me and it'll work for you."

People Talking About ...
Highlights
Mike Douglas on his earliest television appearances, including KTLA's inaugural broadcast with Bob Hope
Mike Doulgas on a young Barbra Streisand performing and co-hosting on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on Judy Garland and Peter Lawford appearing on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on how he got his talk show, The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on having Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on The Oprah Winfrey Show and The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early years growing up in Chicago; Kay Kyser giving him his stage name; his childhood; and some of his early professional work
On how he got his talk show, The Mike Douglas Show; on working with producer Woody Fraser The Mike Douglas Show; on working with producer Roger Ailes on The Mike Douglas Show

Chapter 2

On how Roger Ailes helped Richard Nixon with his television image when he appeared on The Mike Douglas Show; on what Roger Ailes brought to The Mike Douglas Show as producer; on how the concept for The Mike Douglas Show came about, and how Bob Hope helped promote it
On the rapid growth of The Mike Douglas Show; on a young Barbra Streisand performing and co-hosting on The Mike Douglas Show; on the concept of having co-hosts each week on The Mike Douglas Show including Joe E. Brown and Jerry Lester
On Zsa Zsa Gabor swearing on The Mike Douglas Show which turned it from a live to taped program, and on censorship issues with the show; on an incident between Milton Berle and Richard Pryor on The Mike Douglas Show;
On how he worked with his co-hosts on The Mike Douglas Show; on Paul Anka cancelling at the last minute, and on having comedians like Michael Keaton and Billy Crystal co-host The Mike Douglas Show

Chapter 3

On learning of the assassination of President Kennedy while he was hosting a live broadcast of The Mike Douglas Show; on interviewing Robert F. Kennedy on The Mike Douglas Show; on producer Woody Fraser hiring staff for The Mike Douglas Show
On watching Barbara Walters interview; on some of his most challenging interviews on The Mike Douglas Show; on getting the proper mix of guests on The Mike Douglas Show
On moving The Mike Douglas Show from Cleveland to Philadelphia; on providing question in advance for guests on The Mike Douglas Show and on topics that are off limits; on the audience for The Mike Douglas Show and on his studio audiences
On The Oprah Winfrey Show and The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson; on the demanding taping schedule for The Mike Douglas Show; on interviewing Rose Kennedy on The Mike Douglas Show

Chapter 4

On researching guests for The Mike Douglas Show; on what makes a good interview; on Judy Garland and Peter Lawford appearing on The Mike Douglas Show
On interviewing Aretha Franklin and Tiger Woods on The Mike Douglas Show; on the musical segments and band of The Mike Douglas Show; on The Mike Douglas Show moving to Los Angeles
On interviewing Lucille Ball and John Wayne on The Mike Douglas Show; on having Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly on The Mike Douglas Show

Chapter 5

On Jack Benny appearing on The Mike Douglas Show; on Mary Tyler Moore and Lucille Ball on the Mary Tyler Moore Comedy Hour; on Bill Cosby appearing on The Mike Douglas Show
On the week John Lennon and Yoko Ono co-hosted The Mike Douglas Show; on having Tom and Dick Smothers on The Mike Douglas Show; on having David Letterman on The Mike Douglas Show
On The Tonight Show producer Fred De Cordova; on news anchor Walter Cronkite; on interviewing Martin Luther King, Jr. on The Mike Douglas Show
On having Malcom X on The Mike Douglas Show two days before his assassination; on meeting several United States Presidents including Lyndon B. Johnson; on never having Frank Sinatra on The Mike Douglas Show

Chapter 6

On The Mike Douglas Show sets and catchphrase; on his favorite moments from The Mike Douglas Show; on the end of The Mike Douglas Show
On how the industry has changed since he started; on the tapes of The Mike Douglas Show; on having Tiger Woods on The Mike Douglas Show when he was a child
On his earliest television appearances, including KTLA's inaugural broadcast with Bob Hope; on his turbulent friendship Frank Sinatra;
On voicing "Prince Charming" in the Disney feature film Cinderella" and on Walt Disney's legacy; on his appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show
On his appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1968

Chapter 7

On appearing on The Carol Burnett Show with Tim Conway; on then-current projects; on his interaction with fans
On advice to aspiring talk show hosts; on his family; on how he'd like to be remembered
Shows

Carol Burnett Show, The (1967-78)

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Make Douglas on appearing on The Carol Burnett Show with Tim Conway

Ed Sullivan Show, The aka Toast of the Town

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Mike Douglas on his appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show

Kay Kyser's Kollege of Musical Knowledge

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Mike Douglas on how he got his name shortened by Kay Kyser on Kay Kyser's Kollege of Musical Knowledge

Mary Tyler Moore Comedy Hour

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Mike Douglas on Mary Tyler Moore and Lucille Ball on the Mary Tyler Moore Comedy Hour

Mike Douglas Show, The

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Mike Douglas on how he got his talk show, The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on Sammy Davis, Jr. appearing on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on working with producer Woody Fraser The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on working with producer Roger Ailes on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Doulgas on what Roger Ailes brought to The Mike Douglas Show as producer
Mike Doulgas on how the concept for The Mike Douglas Show came about, and how Bob Hope helped promote it
Mike Doulgas on the rapid growth of The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Doulgas on a young Barbra Streisand performing and co-hosting on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Doulgas on the concept of having co-hosts each week on The Mike Douglas Show including Joe E. Brown and Jerry Lester
Mike Doulgas on Zsa Zsa Gabor swearing on The Mike Douglas Show which turned it from a live to taped program, and on censorship issues with the show
Mike Doulgas on an incident between Milton Berle and Richard Pryor on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Doulgas on how he worked with his co-hosts on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Doulgas on Paul Anka cancelling at the last minute, and on having comedians like Michael Keaton and Billy Crystal co-host The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on some of his most challenging interviews on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on getting the proper mix of guests on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on moving The Mike Douglas Show from Cleveland to Philadelphia
Mike Douglas on providing question in advance for guests on The Mike Douglas Show and on topics that are off limits
Mike Douglas on the audience for The Mike Douglas Show and on his studio audiences
Mike Douglas on the demanding taping schedule for The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on a typical tape day for The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on interviewing Rose Kennedy on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on interviewing Robert F. Kennedy on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on producer Woody Fraser hiring staff for The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on learning of the assassination of President Kennedy while he was hosting a live broadcast of The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on researching guests for The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on Judy Garland and Peter Lawford appearing on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on interviewing Aretha Franklin and Tiger Woods on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on the musical segments and band of The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on The Mike Douglas Show moving to Los Angeles
Mike Douglas on interviewing Lucille Ball and John Wayne on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on having Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on comedian Jack Benny appearing on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on Bill Cosby appearing on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on the week John Lennon and Yoko Ono co-hosted The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on having Tom and Dick Smothers on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on having David Letterman on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on interviewing Martin Luther King, Jr. on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on having Malcom X on The Mike Douglas Show two days before his assassination
Mike Douglas on his catchphrase "I'll be right back" and The Mike Douglas Show sets
Mike Douglas on his favorite moments from The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on the end of The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on the tapes of The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on having Tiger Woods on The Mike Douglas Show when he was a child

Oprah Winfrey Show, The

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Mike Douglas on The Oprah Winfrey Show and The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson

Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, The

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Mike Douglas on The Oprah Winfrey Show and The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson
Mike Douglas on The Tonight Show producer Fred De Cordova
Topics

Censorship / Standards & Practices

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Mike Doulgas on the story Zsa Zsa Gabor told on The Mike Douglas Show that turned it from a live to taped program

Characters & Catchphrases

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Mike Douglas on his catchphrase "I'll be right back" and The Mike Douglas Show sets

Civil Rights Movement

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Mike Douglas on interviewing Martin Luther King, Jr. on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on having Malcom X on The Mike Douglas Show two days before his assassination

Historic Events and Social Change

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Mike Douglas on learning of the assassination of President Kennedy while he was hosting a live broadcast of The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on interviewing Martin Luther King, Jr. on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on having Malcom X on The Mike Douglas Show two days before his assassination

JFK Assassination and Funeral

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Mike Douglas on learning of the assassination of President Kennedy while he was hosting a live broadcast of The Mike Douglas Show

Minorities

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Mike Douglas on booking African-American acts for The Mike Douglas Show

Pop Culture

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Mike Douglas on his catchphrase "I'll be right back" and The Mike Douglas Show sets

Richard M. Nixon

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Mike Doulgas on how Roger Ailes helped Richard Nixon with his television image he appeared on The Mike Douglas Show

Television Industry

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Mike Doulgas on the story Zsa Zsa Gabor told on The Mike Douglas Show that turned it from a live to taped program
Mike Douglas on how the industry has changed since he started

Television and the Presidency

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Mike Doulgas on how Roger Ailes helped Richard Nixon with his television image he appeared on The Mike Douglas Show
Professions

Hosts

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Mike Douglas on what makes a good interview
Mike Douglas on advice to aspiring talk show hosts

Talk Show Host

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Mike Douglas on what makes a good interview
Mike Douglas on advice to aspiring talk show hosts
Genres

Talk Shows

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Mike Douglas on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Doulgas on the concept of, co-hosts, and guests on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on memorable guests, the audience, and a typical day on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on hosting The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on memorable guests on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on his catchphrase "I'll be right back" and The Mike Douglas Show sets
People

Roger Ailes

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Mike Douglas on working with producers Woody Fraser and Roger Ailes on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on working with producer Roger Ailes on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Doulgas on how Roger Ailes helped Richard Nixon with his television image when he appeared on The Mike Douglas Show

Paul Anka

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Mike Doulgas on Paul Anka cancelling at the last minute, and on having comedians like Michael Keaton and Billy Crystal co-host The Mike Douglas Show

Fred Astaire

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Mike Douglas on having Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly on The Mike Douglas Show

Lucille Ball

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Mike Douglas on interviewing Lucille Ball and John Wayne on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on Mary Tyler Moore and Lucille Ball on the Mary Tyler Moore Comedy Hour

Jack Benny

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Mike Douglas on comedian Jack Benny appearing on The Mike Douglas Show

Milton Berle

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Mike Doulgas on an incident between Milton Berle and Richard Pryor on The Mike Douglas Show

Chuck Berry

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Mike Douglas on John Lennon and Yoko Ono and Chuck Berry

Joe E. Brown

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Mike Doulgas on the concept of having co-hosts each week on The Mike Douglas Show including Joe E. Brown and Jerry Lester

Carol Burnett

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Make Douglas appearing on The Carol Burnett Show with Tim Conway

Art Carney

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Mike Doulgas on how he worked with his co-hosts on The Mike Douglas Show and on working with Jackie Gleason and Art Carney

Tim Conway

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Make Douglas appearing on The Carol Burnett Show with Tim Conway

Fred de Cordova

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Mike Douglas on The Tonight Show producer Fred De Cordova

Bill Cosby

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Mike Douglas on Bill Cosby appearing on The Mike Douglas Show

Walter Cronkite

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Mike Douglas on news anchor Walter Cronkite

Billy Crystal

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Mike Doulgas on Paul Anka cancelling at the last minute, and on having comedians like Michael Keaton and Billy Crystal co-host The Mike Douglas Show

Sammy Davis, Jr.

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Mike Douglas on Sammy Davis, Jr. appearing on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on final say for booking guests

Walt Disney

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Mike Douglas on voicing "Prince Charming" in the Disney feature film Cinderella; on Walt Disney's legacy
Mike Douglas on voicing "Prince Charming" in the Disney feature film Cinderella; on Walt Disney's legacy

Phil Donahue

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Mike Douglas on appearing on Phil Donahue's local Dayton, OH talk show

Ella Fitzgerald

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Mike Douglas on "the mix"

Aretha Franklin

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Mike Douglas on interviewing Aretha Franklin and Tiger Woods on The Mike Douglas Show

Woody Fraser

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Mike Douglas on working with producer Woody Fraser The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on producer Woody Fraser hiring staff for The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on final say for booking guests

Zsa Zsa Gabor

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Mike Doulgas on Zsa Zsa Gabor swearing on The Mike Douglas Show which turned it from a live to taped program, and on censorship issues with the show

Judy Garland

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Mike Douglas on Judy Garland and Peter Lawford appearing on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on his favorite moments from The Mike Douglas Show: Judy Garland

Jackie Gleason

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Mike Doulgas on how he worked with his co-hosts on The Mike Douglas Show and on working with Jackie Gleason and Art Carney

Bob Hope

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Mike Doulgas on how the concept for The Mike Douglas Show came about, and how Bob Hope helped promote it
Mike Douglas on his earliest television appearances, including KTLA's inaugural broadcast with Bob Hope

Lyndon B. Johnson

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Mike Douglas on meeting several United States Presidents including Lyndon B. Johnson

Michael Keaton

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Mike Doulgas on Paul Anka cancelling at the last minute, and on having comedians like Michael Keaton and Billy Crystal co-host The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on discovering young comics Billy Crystal and Michael Keaton

Gene Kelly

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Mike Douglas on having Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly on The Mike Douglas Show

Robert F. Kennedy

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Mike Douglas on interviewing Robert F. Kennedy on The Mike Douglas Show

Rose Kennedy

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Mike Douglas on interviewing Rose Kennedy on The Mike Douglas Show

Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Mike Douglas on interviewing Martin Luther King, Jr. on The Mike Douglas Show

Kay Kyser

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Mike Douglas on how he got his name shortened by Kay Kyser on Kay Kyser's Kollege of Musical Knowledge

John Lennon

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Mike Douglas on the week John Lennon and Yoko Ono co-hosted The Mike Douglas Show

Jerry Lester

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Mike Doulgas on the concept of having co-hosts each week on The Mike Douglas Show including Joe E. Brown and Jerry Lester

David Letterman

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Mike Douglas on having David Letterman on The Mike Douglas Show

Liza Minnelli

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Mike Douglas on his favorite moments from The Mike Douglas Show: Liza Minnelli

Mary Tyler Moore

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Mike Douglas on Mary Tyler Moore and Lucille Ball on the Mary Tyler Moore Comedy Hour

Richard M. Nixon

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Mike Doulgas on how Roger Ailes helped Richard Nixon with his television image he appeared on The Mike Douglas Show

Yoko Ono

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Mike Douglas on the week John Lennon and Yoko Ono co-hosted The Mike Douglas Show

Richard Pryor

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Mike Doulgas on an incident between Milton Berle and Richard Pryor on The Mike Douglas Show

Frank Sinatra

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Mike Douglas on never having Frank Sinatra on The Mike Douglas Show
Mike Douglas on his turbulent friendship Frank Sinatra

Tom Smothers

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Mike Douglas on having Tom and Dick Smothers on The Mike Douglas Show

Dick Smothers

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Mike Douglas on having Tom and Dick Smothers on The Mike Douglas Show

Barbra Streisand

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Mike Doulgas on a young Barbra Streisand performing and co-hosting on The Mike Douglas Show

Ed Sullivan

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Mike Douglas on his appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show

Barbara Walters

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Mike Douglas on watching Barbara Walters interview 

Oprah Winfrey

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Mike Douglas on The Oprah Winfrey Show and The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson

Malcolm X

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Mike Douglas on having Malcom X on The Mike Douglas Show two days before his assassination

All Interviews

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