‘The Andy Griffith Show’: How Don Knotts and Andy Griffith Met and Became a Beloved Comedy Team

by Jeremy Spirogis
Andy Griffith and Don Knotts in the first episode of

On traditional comedy collection The Andy Griffith Show, sheriff of Mayberry Andy Taylor and his deputy Barney Fife weren’t solely work colleagues. They had been additionally greatest mates.

The identical was true of the actors who portrayed the 2 males in actual life, up till demise.

Andy Griffith and Don Knotts in the first episode of 'The Andy Griffith Show'
Andy Griffith and Don Knotts within the first episode of ‘The Andy Griffith Show’ | CBS by way of Getty Images

‘The Andy Griffith Show’ marked its 60th anniversary because the present’s premiere

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The traditional comedy collection debuted in 1960 in a world not but confronted with a presidential assassination and cultural turmoil.

As creator Richard Kelly famous in his 1981 e-book, The Andy Griffith Show, “Unlike so many packages that start with a slick pilot after which degenerate, the Griffith Show truly improved with time. Beneath its easy rustic setting lies a excessive diploma of sophistication.

“The acting, writing, production, directing, and scoring were painstakingly worked out and blended to produce one of the more popular and artistic creations of the 1960s.”

How Don Knotts and Andy Griffith met

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RELATED: ‘The Andy Griffith Show’: Why Weren’t Many People Married in Mayberry?

According to Daniel de Visé, creator of 2015’s Andy and Don: The Making of a Friendship and a Classic American TV Show, the 2 males met whereas working collectively on Broadway in a 1955 manufacturing of No Time for Sergeants.

It wasn’t till 1960 that Knotts noticed his outdated friend once more on tv one night time on the Danny Thomas sitcom, Make Room For Daddy. It was by means of that collection that The Andy Griffith Show got here to be and to introduce the nation to Andy, Mayberry, and ultimately Don Knotts.

De Visé wrote, “As Don beheld Andy on [television], ‘the wheels in my brain began to whirl,’ Don recalled. The a part of Sheriff Andy Taylor appeared good for Andy. A present like that will be honey to the sponsors, with all its homespun allure. And Don puzzled if there is perhaps a spot for him in Mayberry.

“A part on Andy’s new show just might rekindle Don’s career—and revive his old friendship with Andy. Don had always hoped he and Andy might work together again someday. Then, he placed a call to New York [and] told Andy how much he’d enjoyed the pilot. Then he asked, ‘Listen, don’t you think Sheriff Andy Taylor ought to have a deputy?’”

What Don Knotts considered Andy Griffith

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In his 1999 interview with the Archive of American Television, Don Knotts spoke on Griffith’s expressiveness and his appreciation of a superb giggle.

Knotts mentioned of his former present companion, “[Andy] was enjoyable. I feel Andy had the time of his life on that present. Andy was very expressive.

“His wife used to say to me, ‘Don’t sit in front of Andy at the movies! If something funny hits him, he’ll hit you right on top of the head.’ That’s the way he is; he’ll hit the wall. If I said something funny to Andy, he’d run clear across the sound stage. He’s just very demonstrative. He’s fun to be around.”

“Though their Mayberry partnership lasted only until 1965, the two remained best friends for life,” de Visé wrote. “Andy was with Don in 2006 at his deathbed.”

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