Clarence the Cross-eyed Lion - Silly
looking lion seen on the adventure series DAKTARI/CBS/1966-69.
Clarence lived at the Wameru Study Center for Animal Behavior in
East Africa run by Dr. Marsh Tracy (Marshall Thompson) and his
daughter/assistant Paula Tracy (Cheryl Miller). When the audience
saw what Clarence saw, it was in double vision.
Clarence the lion
and Judy the Chimpanzee were the family pets. Judy loved to climb
onto the back of Clarence and grab a free ride. Reportedly, Clarence
was very good with children. Clarence's temperament was so mild that
he once "hatched" 12 ostrich chicks in one episode.
Another not so friendly lion named Leo doubled for Clarence in
some scenes. He was used only for the snarling scenes and general
scenes which didn't involve close proximity with humans. Leo had
come to Africa USA from a family in Utah. His ferocity was due in
part to the mistreatment he received from former owners who
reportedly beat him with a stick.
Ivan Tors first discovered Clarence at Africa, USA, an affection
training compound located in Soledad Canyon near Los Angeles. Born
cross-eyed, Clarence's strange physical condition inspired Ivan Tors
to create the MGM feature film Clarence the Cross-Eyed Lion
(1965) and the spin-off series DAKTARI.
Cast of the TV series 'Daktari'
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