- NAME: Andy Griffith
- OCCUPATION: Actor, Talk Show Host
- BIRTH DATE: June 01, 1926
- DEATH DATE: July 03, 2012
- EDUCATION: Mount Airy High School, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Mount Airy, North Carolina
- PLACE OF DEATH: Manteo, Roanoke Island, North Carolina
- Full Name: Andy Griffith
Best Known For
Andy Griffith is an actor and singer best known for his 1960s starring role in The Andy Griffith Show. He later returned to TV in the drama Matlock.
Andy Griffith - The Cast (3:20)
Andy Griffith - Early Years (2:08)
The cast of "The Andy Griffith Show" recall their experiences on set.
On October 3rd, 1960, the world was introduced to Andy Griffith and a small town called Mayberry.
Andy Griffith began his entree into comedy with stand up acts that eventually landed him a record deal with Capitol Records.
Andy Griffith grew up in the quiet town of Mount Airy, North Carolina in 1926. His family faced tough times as the Great Depression hit but managed to make it through and even bought their own home.
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Born on June 1, 1926, in Mount Airy, North Carolina, Andy Griffith hit stardom in the late 1950s acting in film, TV and Broadway productions while also creating albums of comedic monologues. He rose to immense popularity as the character Andy Taylor on The Andy Griffith Show, which ran from 1960-'68. He later returned to TV in the lawyer drama Matlock and recorded several gospel albums. He died in Manteo, Roanoke Island, North Carolina, on July 3, 2012.
"You know, when you're young you think you will always be. As you become more fragile, you reflect, and you realize how much comfort can come from the past."
"Hymns connect us with the past and with each other in the present."
"I wanted to prove that I could play something else. But there were 249 episodes of 'Mayberry' out there and it was aired everyday. It was hard to escape."
"I'm not really wise, but I can be cranky."
"Do a good days work and act like somebody."
"I loved Don [Knotts]. There was no one like him."
"I am proud of my connections to Carolina and please to know that some results from a lifetime of work on television, film, stage and recordings will have a permanent home in Chapel Hill."
"If you think and feel what you're supposed to think and feel, hard enough, it'll come out through your eyes-and the camera will see it."
"I was baptized alongside my mother when I was 8 years old. Since then, I have tried to walk a Christian life. And now that I'm getting older, I realize I'm walking closer with my God."
Born on June 1, 1926, in Mount Airy, North Carolina, Andy Griffith's first career ambition was to be an opera singer. Later, he decided he wanted to become a Moravian preacher, and enrolled as a pre-divinity student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1944. While in college, he became involved in drama and musical theater, and graduated in 1949 with a degree in music.
Griffith taught high school music for three years before setting out, with his new wife, Barbara Edwards, a fellow actor at UNC, on a career as an entertainer. The couple developed a traveling routine, featuring singing, dancing and monologues performed by Griffith. One of these monologues, called "What It Was Was Football," was released commercially in 1953 and became one of the most popular comedic monologues of all time.
Griffith and his wife moved to New York, where he made his television debut as a guest monologist on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1954. That same year, he won the role of Will Stockdale in the TV version of Ira Levin's play, No Time for Sergeants. When the play was produced on Broadway in 1955, it became a hit, and Griffith was nominated for a Tony Award for outstanding supporting actor. Like his co-star and fellow southerner, Don Knotts, Griffith went on to reprise his role in the 1958 film version of No Time for Sergeants, which met with a mixed critical reception.
In 1960, Griffith earned another Tony nomination, this time for best actor in a musical, for Destry Rides Again. He made his feature film debut in 1957, in the provocative A Face in the Crowd, directed by Elia Kazan. He was also a regular, with Knotts, on the NBC variety series, The Steve Allen Show, from 1959 to 1960.
Griffith's 1960 guest appearance as a small-town mayor on the sitcom Make Room for Daddy led CBS to give him his own sitcom, The Andy Griffith Show, in which he played the gentle, philosophical small-town Sheriff Andy Taylor. The show was a tremendous success, consistently ranking among the most popular sitcoms during the entirety of its eight-year run. Knotts co-starred from 1960 to 1965, as Taylor's high-strung deputy sheriff, Barney Fife. The young Ron Howard also co-starred, as the sheriff's red-haired son, Opie.
After The Andy Griffith Show went off the air in 1968, Griffith appeared in several feature films, including Hearts of the West (1975), also starring Jeff Bridges. For the most part, however, he concentrated on TV, and appeared in several short-lived attempts to recapture the success of The Andy Griffith Show, including Headmaster (1970-'71), and The New Andy Griffith Show (1972), both on CBS, Salvage (1980) on ABC, and the ABC Western comedy series, Best of the West (1981-'82). Griffith was also the executive producer of Mayberry, R.F.D., the first spinoff of The Andy Griffith Show, which ran from 1968 to 1971.
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