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Tag: Andy Griffith (1-2 of 2)

Ron Howard remembers Andy Griffith's 'great sense of humor about life'

Playing Andy Griffith’s son, Opie, on The Andy Griffith Show, Ron Howard had a first-hand look into one of the most popular television shows — and characters — of all time. With the news that star Andy Griffith passed away this morning at age 86, Howard got on the phone with EW to share his favorite memories about his TV dad.

On his first meeting with Griffith, Howard said, “I was five years old. And I was preoccupied with the prop that was in my hand, because it was a toy turtle. But I had to pretend it was a real turtle that the audience just wasn’t seeing, and it was dead, so I was supposed to be crying and very emotional, and I remember him looking at that little turtle and talking to me about how it was kind of funny to have to pretend that was dead. So I recall just a very relaxed first impression.”

Howard stressed the positive memories he had of his time on the show and of Griffith’s role in that supportive environment. “He was fantastic,” Howard said. “There was a fantastic equilibrium between his love of laughter and jokes and funny stories and songs and all that, and then he could turn on a dime and be the utmost professional…. If people who met him were to be surprised [to learn something about him] it would be this sort of simple commitment to excellence. This straightforward work ethic that he adhered to in a very unpretentious way with great humility and very few words.” READ FULL STORY

Andy Griffith, America's favorite sheriff, dies at 86

Television icon Andy Griffith, best known as the sage town sheriff in the ’60s sitcom The Andy Griffith Show and as a cantankerous defense attorney on 1980s-’90s drama Matlock, died today in Roanoke Island, N.C. He was 86 years old. Friend and former University of North Carolina president Bill Friday confirmed the news to WITN News, an NBC affiliate in Washington, N.C.

Born an only child in Mount Airy, N.C., Griffith spent his boyhood listening to music. He aspired to be an opera singer before turning his attention to acting after college at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. He began his career as a comedic monologist with the 1953 release of What It Was, Was Football, a massive hit both on radio and in stores. On Broadway, he earned Tony nominations playing a country bumpkin in the Army-based comedy No Time for Sergeants and a sheriff in the musical Destry Rides Again. Then Hollywood beckoned. In his first film, Elia Kazan’s critically acclaimed A Face in the Crowd, Griffith portrayed another country boy, this time with a manipulative and power-hungry streak. He followed it with a film version of No Time for Sergeants, featuring future Andy Griffith Show costar and lifelong pal Don Knotts. READ FULL STORY

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