I reached a jubilant Fess Parker by phone, Wednesday noon at the Fess Parker Double Tree Resort in Santa Barbara as he was reunioning with members of his successful (1964-1970) “Daniel Boone” TV series. They included his “son” Israel, “daughter” Jemima, Darby Hinton and Veronica Cartwright plus Ed Ames who played Fess’ (“Boone’s”) Indian friend, Mingo.
The reason for the reunion: 165 “Boone” segs will be DVD’d this September by Liberation Entertainment. Chairman Jay Boberg and Vice-Chairman Irv Holender also plan to distrib the popular 20th-Fox series in France, Italy, Portugal, and Spain. They’ve completely redigitalized the shows and plan to re-air them as well — plus other series including “Peter Gunn” and “Robin Hood.”
Fess is particularly happy with the new Boone” boom — he owns 40% of the series. When I asked him how much he was paid per show back in 1964, he laughingly said, “It would be embarrassing by comparison with ‘Friends” cast salaries.” Meanwhile, Parker (now 81) has compounded his series’ success and says he has no beef with 20th Century-Fox over the “Daniel Boone” series or its merchandising.
However, it’s another story at Disney and “Davy Crockett” — chapters still to come on that score. Fess and wife Marcie, son Eli, daughter Ashley and son-in-law Tim Snider also met Wednesday night on other successful family bizness — their several, respective family wine labels which have gained world attention following Fess’ acting career.