Marlo Thomas Net worth, biography, Age, Career, Spouse, Children in 2023

Marlo Thomas Biography

Margaret Julia “Marlo” Thomas, an American actress, producer, author, and social activist, was born on November 21, 1937. She is best remembered for her roles in the children’s franchise Free to Be…

You and Me and the sitcom That Girl between the 1966 and 1971. She has been elected into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame and has won three Primetime Emmy Awards, a Daytime Emmy Award, a Golden Globe Award, a Peabody Award, and a Daytime Emmy Award for her work in television.

For her children’s album Marlo Thomas and Friends: Thanks & Giving All Year Long, she also won a Grammy. She received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2014.

In 1962, her father, Danny Thomas, founded St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, where Thomas currently holds the position of National Outreach Director. In order to help the hospital, she developed the Thanks & Giving campaign in 2004.

Marlo Thomas Background

Thomas is the oldest child of comedian Danny Thomas and Rose Marie Cassaniti. He was born in Detroit and reared in Beverly Hills, California. Terre, her sister, and Tony Thomas, a producer, are her siblings.

Her mother was Sicilian American, while her father was a Roman Catholic Lebanese American. Loretta Young served as her godmother.  The nickname “Marlo” was given to Thomas by her family because she mispronounced Margo as a child.

Thomas, who graduated from the University of Southern California with a teaching degree after attending Marymount High School, stated, “I wanted a piece of paper that showed I was competent to accomplish anything in the world.” She belonged to the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority.

Marlo Thomas Career

In addition to Bonanza, McHale’s Navy, Ben Casey, Arrest and Trial, The Joey Bishop Show, The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, My Favorite Martian, 77 Sunset Strip, and The Donna Reed Show, Thomas made several television appearances.

Her major break came in 1965 when Mike Nichols cast her in the London production of Neil Simon’s Barefoot in the Park, which also starred Mildred Natwick, Daniel Massey, and Kurt Kasznar.

In 1986, she was once more chosen by Nichols for the Broadway production of Andrew Bergman’s Social Security, which also starred Olympia Dukakis and Ron Silver.

In the 1961 episode “Honor Bright” of CBS’ Dick Powell’s Zane Grey Theatre, Thomas and her father, Danny, played Laurie and Ed Dubro.


In 1965, Thomas played the lead role in the ABC pilot Two’s Company. A network programming executive was interested in it despite the fact that it did not succeed in selling. In his meeting with Thomas, he expressed interest in having her star in a solo show.

Thomas developed her own concept for a program about a young woman who leaves home, relocates to New York City, and battles to become an actress with their support. At first, the network hesitated, worried that viewers would find a show focusing on a single female uninteresting or unrealistic.

The idea eventually turned into the comedy series That Girl, in which Thomas portrayed Ann Marie, a stunning aspiring actress with Ted Bessell’s character as her writer boyfriend.

The show chronicled Ann’s everyday hardships as she worked several temporary jobs and pursued her ambition of working on Broadway. One of the first television programs to highlight a working, single woman who did not live with her parents was That Girl, and it opened the way for a number of subsequent programs.

Thomas, who followed Betty White, Lucille Ball, and Gertrude Berg as the only other women to produce their own series, was the first. The 136 episodes of That Girl, which ran from 1966 to 1971, did well in the Nielsen ratings.

After five years, Thomas decided to terminate the series in 1971. Both ABC and Clairol, the show’s sponsor, wanted the series finale to feature the wedding of the two main characters.

However, Thomas rejected their requests, stating that she believed it would send the wrong message to her female audience because it would imply that marriage is the only path to happiness. Since then, That Girl has gained syndicated appeal.

See Also   Anne Hathaway Net Worth, Age, parent's And Other Fact's

Our sponsor, Clairol, wanted the program to conclude with a wedding. I answered, “These women and girls who accompanied Ann Marie on her voyage, I just can’t do that to them. Because I don’t think it’s true, I can’t say that a wedding is the only happy ending.”

There was a lot of uproar around it, but I refused to do it. Nobody was pleased with Ann Marie taking Donald to a women’s liberation gathering on the previous episode but me. I was smitten.

Also Read>>> Jessica Gao net worth, biography, age, wiki, career, spouse, family


Thomas decided to enter the Actors Studio after That Girl because she wanted to broaden her horizons. There, she worked with Lee Strasberg until his death in 1982 and then with Strasberg’s student Sandra Seacat.

She acknowledged both them when she received her Best Dramatic Actress Emmy in 1986 for the television film Nobody’s Child.

On September 17, 1989, Thomas attended the 41st Primetime Emmy Awards.
Free to Be… You and Me, a children’s book she published in 1972, was inspired by her young niece Dionne Gordon.

Later, she collaborated with Christopher Cerf to produce two television programs with the same name: Free to Be… You and Me (1972, 1974), and Free to Be… A Family (1987).

She participated in the Democratic National Convention in Miami Beach, Florida, also in 1972, as a representative of California. At Star-Spangled Women for McGovern-Shriver in October 1972, she supported George McGovern’s presidential campaign by performing a parody of Erich Segal’s Love Story in front of 19,000 spectators at Madison Square Garden.

The Ms. Foundation for Women, the first women’s foundation in the US, was founded in 1973 by Thomas alongside Gloria Steinem, Patricia Carbine, and Letty Cottin Pogrebin.

The group was founded to provide financing and other resources to groups representing liberal women’s voices in localities around the country.

The Practice on NBC in 1976 featured Thomas as a recalcitrant patient of her father Danny Thomas’ character Dr. Jules Bedford. The rapport between father and daughter actors made for heartfelt hospital scenes.

She has made cameo appearances on a number of TV shows, including Ballers, The New Normal, Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later, and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (where she played Judge Mary Conway Clark, ADA Casey Novak’s mentor).

She also provided the narration for the Investigation Discovery series Happily Never After. Sandra Green, Rachel Green’s mother, was portrayed by Thomas on the television series Friends from 1996 until 2002.

In addition to Jenny in 1970, Thieves in 1977, In The Spirit in 1990, The Real Blonde in 1997, Starstruck in 1998, Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo in 199), Playing Mona Lisa in 2000, LOL in 2012 alongside Demi Moore and Miley Cyrus, and Cardboard Boxer, Thomas also starred in a number of other movies in 2014.

A remake of It’s a Wonderful Life, It Happened One Christmas in 1977; also produced, The Lost Honor of Kathryn Beck in 1984; also produced, Consenting Adult in 985, Nobody’s Child in 1986; Best Dramatic Actress Emmy, Held Hostage: The Sis and Jerry Levin Story in 1991; also produced, Reunion in 1994; also produced, Deceit in 2004; also produced), and Ultimate Betrayal were among the television films she appeared in in 1994.

In addition to Thieves in 1974, Social Security in 1986, and The Shadow Box in 1994, Thomas has performed in three one-act plays by Elaine May, including George Is Dead in Relatively Speaking in 2011, for which The New York Times praised her “sublime” performance. Ethan Coen and Woody Allen wrote the other two plays.

Thomas has performed in a number of Off-Broadway productions, including The Guys, The Exonerated (in which she also starred alongside Brian Dennehy in Chicago and Boston, The Vaginal Monologues, and Love, Loss, and What I Wore.

See Also   Kenechukwu Ezeh biography, Wiki, Education, Age, Family and net worth

She performed in Joe DiPietro’s play Clever Little Lies, which made its New York debut in 2015 at the Westside Theatre, off-Broadway as well, opposite Greg Mullavey.

The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds at the Cleveland Playhouse; Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? at the Hartford Stage; Woman In Mind at the Berkshire Theatre Festival; Paper Doll, starring F. Murray Abraham, at the Pittsburgh Public Theatre; and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? at the Hartford Stage. She took part in the national tour of Six Degrees of Separation in 1993.

Also Read>>> Droupadi Murmu biography, age, children, spouse, career, Instagram

She co-starred alongside Keith Carradine in Arthur Laurents’ final piece, New Year’s Eve, at the George Street Playhouse in the spring of 2008.

Three of Thomas’ seven best-selling books are in the top three bestsellers. The Right Words at the Right Time, Volume 2: Your Turn, Free to Be… You and Me, Free to Be… A Family, and The Right Words at the Right Time Marlo Thomas and Companions Growing Up Laughing, her 2009 autobiography, Thanks & Giving All Year Long, It Ain’t Over…Till It’s Over: Reinventing Your Life and Realizing Your Dreams Anytime, At Any Age, and It Ain’t Over…Till It’s Over: Reinventing Your Life and Realizing Your Dreams Anytime, At Any Age.

Danny Thomas, Thomas’ father, founded St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee, where she currently works as the National Outreach Director.

She gave the hospital all of the proceeds from her two Right Words at the Right Time books, her 2004 book Marlo Thomas and Friends: Thanks & Giving All Year Long (also produced with Christopher Cerf), and her CD.

Thomas founded in 2010, a website for women 35 and older that is linked to AOL and the Huffington Post.

Marlo Thomas Personal life

Herb Gardner, a dramatist, and Thomas were long-term partners. When Thomas appeared as a guest on Phil Donahue’s television talk show in 1977, it was “love at first sight” between her and the host.

After being married on May 21st, 1980, Donahue relocated from Chicago to New York City with several of his sons and his daughter in order to live with Thomas and do his talk show there. Donahue’s four sons and girl from his first marriage live with Thomas as their stepmother.

Thomas revealed to the AARP magazine in May 2012 that she had a good relationship with her stepchildren “I made the decision that I would not strive to be Phil’s children’s mother in the traditional sense because they already had a mother. Instead, I would just try to be their friend. I’m happy to report that the friendships I formed with them 30 years ago are still going strong now.”

Ironically, despite Thomas’ longtime public connection with feminist concerns and despite frequent discussions of them on her husband’s talk show, she found it difficult to relate to a pregnant working woman in her personal life.

A home crew attended to Thomas, Donahue, several of his kids, and his daughter at the Fifth Avenue penthouse where they resided. Desmond Atholl served as the staff’s majordomo from February 1986 to December 1988.

In 1990, Atholl made a public allegation that Thomas had treated unfairly the household’s laundress, a Chinese immigrant with the first name Linda, in 1988.

Before Thomas hired Atholl in February 1986, Linda, who shared a home in the Queens neighborhood with her husband, was already doing all of the washing for the huge family by herself. Linda was not Marlo’s favorite employee, according to Atholl, “because she came in at 9 A.M. and left exactly at 5 P.M.

Someone who would set aside their personal lives and be accessible twenty-four hours a day to satisfy Marlo’s every need was the ideal employee.

See Also   Kendall Jenner Net worth, Wikipedia, Age, Career

When Linda became obviously pregnant in 1988, Thomas wanted to fire her without Donahue becoming involved. In a book that he and Michael Cherkinian co-authored and was released in hardback in 1990, Atholl explained:

Eventually ,Linda hadto tell Marlo she was pregnat when she was clearly pregnant. 
Marlo was not overjoyed, as was to be expected. 
Linda’s bulk increased
the course of the days, making it harder for her to move the enormous laundry baskets. 
Always the gentleman, Phil assisted Linda in carrying the baskets to the elevator and insisted that assist Linda as well, which was pleased to do.
Marlo, in the meantime, believed that Linda’s pregnancy would 
result in asignificant issueafter the kid was delivered. 
Even though the baby was supposed to be cared for by its grandma, it was inevitable that it would occasionally fall ill and need to be attended to by its mother.
Marlo, self-described feminist, wanted me to locate Linda replacement while designing strategy to make it look that Linda was being fired due to her condition in covert manner. 
Linda would be informed that Marlo required laundress who could also act as her lady’s maid and accompany her on out-of-town vacations and to [her and Donahue’s holiday home in Westport, Connecticut]. 
Marlo believed Linda would accept this justification for letting her go because it was clear she couldn’t travel while having new baby at home.
Thomas did not want to confront the laundress to inform her that she had been dismissed, so she asked Atholl to do it on her instead.
Thomas did not want Donahue to know what was going on, but he did because Linda, who got along very well with him, and her husband sent letter to his office with all the details. As result, the situation deteriorated.
Donahue had previously received letter from Linda and her husband at the penthouse, but Thomas had intercepted it and thrown it away. 
According to the book by Atholl and Cherkinian, “Phil had recently taped an episode of the Donahue show regarding prejudice against pregnant women and was especially unhappy with Marlo for placing him in such bad situation. 
Everyone could hear terrible argument.Thomas’ lack of compassion toward the expectant mother persisted for while during this unpleasant episode in Thomas and Donahue’s marriage, but it was finally resolved when “Linda ended up giving birth to beautiful baby girl…. Marlo paid Linda full salary to stay at home with her daughter for many months to come.”

Marlo Thomas Net Worth

Marlo Thomas is dedicated worker who 
works tirelessly to amass her money. 
Her estimated net worth is estimated in millions of dollars. Her true net worth is now being 
investigated but the true net worth is under review.

Marlo Thomas Awards and Honors

  • Thomas is the recipient of four Emmy Awards, a Golden Globe Award, a Grammy Award, a Jefferson Award, and the Peabody Award.
  • In 1979, the Supersisters trading card set was produced and distributed; one of the cards featured Thomas’ name and picture.
  •  In 1996, she was awarded the Women in Film Lucy Award in recognition of her excellence and innovation in her creative works that have enhanced the perception of women through the medium of television.
  • On November 20, 2014, the Marlo Thomas Center for Global Education and Collaboration was opened as part of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Hillary Clinton presided over the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
  •  On November 24, 2014, President Barack Obama awarded Thomas the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, at a White House ceremony.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.