On December 30, 1963, Let's Make a Deal premiered on NBC. The high-energy format, where contestants dressed in wild costumes and risked cash and merchandise for mystery prizes hidden beneath boxes and behind doors, was an instant success.
During Let's Make A Deal's impressive 23-year run on two national networks and in syndication, Monty Hall, the show's host and co-creator, revolutionized the genre by becoming the first game show personality to be elevated to star status.
In the years that followed, Hall would produce another popular game show, headline at the Sahara Hotel in Las Vegas, guest star in a string of popular television programs, and use his celebrity status to help those less fortunate.
Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Monty Hall's earliest show business work was before Canadian soldiers as an actor and emcee of army shows during the Second World War. In 1945, he attended the University of Manitoba, where he continued to perform in each of the college's musical and dramatic productions.
After earning his Bachelor of Science degree, he moved to Toronto where he resumed his career as actor, singer, emcee, and sportscaster.
In 1955, Hall moved to New York, where he wrote a Memo from Monty, and did a five-year run on NBC's Monitor, despite what the network brass used to describe as his "damned Canadian accent."
Hall began the 1960s in Hollywood as emcee of CBS's Video Village. It was while in Hollywood that he sold NBC his first production, Your First Impression, and teamed with writer-producer Stefan Hatos to create Let's Make a Deal.
Off camera, Hall has kept just as busy. In April 1975, he was elected president of Variety Clubs International, the world's largest children's charity. He has been elected as chairman of Variety Clubs International, for life.
Hall travels extensively throughout Canada, the United States, and Europe speaking and performing for countless charities, and currently serves on the boards of several foundations for hospitals and disease prevention. It is estimated that he has helped to raise over five hundred million dollars for charitable organizations worldwide. His time is always volunteered.
Monty Hall has received over 500 awards worldwide for his humanitarian work including the lifetime title of International Chairman for Variety Clubs International, a children's wing named for him at Mount Sinai in Toronto, and the prestigious Order of Canada.
Canada's Walk of Fame Trivia:
Monty Hall is also the subject of the Monty Hall Problem. The complex logical problem is based on the three closed doors on Let's Make a Deal, and the odds on selecting the correct one.
Though he retired in the early 1990s, Hall still makes occasional television appearances. He played the host of a beauty pageant who schemed to become "the world's most powerful game show host" in the Disney animated series American Dragon: Jake Long. Monty appeared on GSN Live on March 14, 2008, and hosted a game of Let's Make a Deal for Good Morning America on August 18, 2008, as part of Game Show Reunion week. He appeared with his wife on The Newlywed Game hosted by Bob Eubanks on May 18, 2010.
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