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One Sunday afternoon in December an assortment of volunteer
illuminati assembled in the best Sabbath spirit and cut a commercial for
the National Urban Coalition. Under the waving electric-blue cuffs
of Mitch Miller, with the camera directed by Josh Logan, they sang "Let
The Sun Shine In" from Hair, and although the day outside was gloomy, all
that good-fellowship sunshine just poured through the room. Pure
cheer - Occidental to oriental, black to white, rock-ribbed Protestant
to I Ching mystic, John D. Rockefeller III to the Hair people, Ali MacGraw
to Mildred Natwick, Johnny Carson to Merv Griffin. Some of the
voices were off-key. (Said Whitney Young "This disproves one myth: that
blacks have rhythm.") The commercial was scheduled to take three
hours, but because of the high spirits and natural chemistry, everything
melded and welded and it was shot in little over an hour. Tom Matthews
of the Coalition, the man who put the session together, said, "We wanted
to do something that would turn some of the divisiveness and anger in the
country into a more positive feeling....to demonstrate that the heart of
the country is beating." So smile everyone. Open your mouths.
Flash your "V" signs. And sing along: "Let the sun shine...let the
sun shine...the sun shine in." The commercial will be shone in mid-February.
There will be no voice-over. After the one-line lyric is repeated
with incessant gusto, these words will snake onto the bottom of the screen:
"Love: It Comes in All Colors."
Among the damn-givers, in alphabetical order: Cannonball Adderley, Robert Alda, Joseph Allen, Clevland Amory, Jim Bachus, Orson Bean, Texas State Senator Joseph Bernal, Dan Blocker, Ralph Bunche, David Canary, Bobby Capo, Topper Carew, Johnny Carson, Lisle Carter, Peggy Cass, Ray Charles, Roberto Clemente, Frederick Close, Miriam Colon, Carlos Conde, Robert Contreras, Congressman John Conyers, Bob Cousy, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Fernando del Rio, Jack Dempsey, Mildred Dunnock, Pamela Anne Eldred, Jerry Enomoto, James Farmer, Geraldine Fitzgerald, Henry Fonda, Arlene Francis, Herman Gallegos, John Gardner, Will Geer, Arthur Goldberg, harry Golden, Joel Grey, Merv Griffin, Fannie Lou Hamer, Richard Hatcher, Andrew Heiskell, Gustav Heningburg, Bill Hosokawa, Chet Huntley, Senator Daniel K. Inouye, Anne jackson, John Johnson, Stacy Keach, Harry Kitano, Jack Klugman, Joshua Logan, Myrna Loy, Earl Lucas, Keye Luke, Ray Martel, Doug McClure, Ali MacGraw, Butterfly McQueen, Dina Merrill, Mitch Miller, Joseph Monserrat, Greg Morris, Leonard Nimoy, Jerry Orbach, Gordon Parks, Jacob Potofsky, Leontyne Price, Carl Reiner, John D. Rockefeller III, John Russell, Bayard Rustin, William Seneca, james Shigeta, David Susskind, Abe Tapia, Franklin Thomas, Gwen Verdon, Danny Villanueva, Rev. C.T. Vivian, Eli Wallach, Roy Wilkins, Flip Wilson, Whitney Young.