Father Knows Best, a popular American TV and radio sitcom of the 1950s and 1960s, portrayed an idealized vision of middle-class American life of the era. It was created by writer Ed James, who made an audition disc on December 20, 1948. On the audition disc, the father is known as Jim Henderson rather than Jim Anderson. Eight months later, the series began August 25, 1949, on NBC Radio. Set in the Midwest, it starred Robert Young as General Insurance agent Jim Anderson. His wife Margaret was first portrayed by June Whitley and later by Jean Vander Pyl. The Anderson children were Betty (Rhoda Williams), Bud (Ted Donaldson) and Kathy (Norma Jean Nillson). Others in the cast were Eleanor Audley, Herb Vigran and Sam Edwards. Sponsored by General Foods, the series was heard Thursday evenings on NBC until November 19, 1953. Only Robert Young remained of the radio cast when the series moved to CBS television, beginning October 3, 1954. A total of 203 episodes were produced, running until September 17, 1962, and appearing on all three of the television networks of the time. The television show was a Screen Gems film production.