A Date With Judy
Directed by Helen Mack
Cast: Ann Gillis, Dellie Ellis, Louise Erickson, Peggy Wilson, Richard Crenna and Myra Marsh
A Date with Judy is a radio situation comedy based on the comedy and drama of being a teenager which was first broadcast as a summer replacement for Bob Hope’s radio show. The first 30-minute episode was broadcast on June 24, 1941 and the program ran until its last original airing on May 25, 1950.
Popular with teenagers and their parents, the program is about the life of Judy Foster, who is presented as a typical teenager with the usual teenage concerns about boyfriends, parents, and school.
A Date with Judy was produced and directed by Helen Mack, and written by Elaine Leslie. Sponsors over the program’s nine-year run included Pepsodent, Tums, the Ford Motor Company, Bristol Meyers, and Revere Cameras.
The role of Judy Foster was played by Ann Gillis, who was 14 years old at the time. The following summer Judy was played by Dellie Ellis, and the role was again re-cast for the following season, this time with Louise Erickson, who would continue in the role until the series ended in 1950. Judy’s mother was portrayed by Peggy Wilson (the real-life wife of Don Wilson, the announcer on Jack Benny’s radio program). Recurring supporting roles were played by Richard Crenna and Myra Marsh. Some episodes included special guest stars, including Frank Sinatra in an episode in 1945.
The program was so popular that a movie of the same name was made in 1948, starring Jane Powell as Judy, with Elizabeth Taylor, Wallace Beery, Robert Stack and Carmen Miranda. There was also a television program, airing on Saturdays in 1951 (with Pat Crowley as Judy), and then on prime time from 1952-1953 with Mary Linn Beller as Judy. There was even a comic book based on the series which was published from 1947 to 1960, with 79 issues.