‘The Andy Griffith Show’: Andy Griffith Didn’t Like This 1 Thing About the Show

Andy Griffith enjoyed success as the star of The Andy Griffith Show. The series was a hit during its eight-year run, and it’s still a favorite among viewers decades later. However, Griffith revealed there was one thing about the show he didn’t like.

What was ‘The Andy Griffith Show’ about?

Ron Howard and Andy Griffith | CBS via Getty Images
Ron Howard and Andy Griffith | CBS via Getty Images

The Andy Griffith Show focused on the lives of people who lived in the fictional town of Mayberry. The town was run by a widower named Andy Taylor (played by Andy Griffith) who had a son named Opie (Ron Howard). Barney Fife (Don Knotts) was the deputy.

The show ran from 1960 to 1968. During an interview with the Television Academy Foundation, Griffith said he pushed for the show to steer clear of offensive content.  

“I wanted to keep the characters clean,” said Griffith. “If a joke would make a lie out of a character, we would throw the joke out. And that became very important. It became a basic rule. And because of the nature of the show, morality just came right along with it.”

The 1 thing Andy Griffith didn’t like about ‘The Andy Griffith Show’

One thing Griffith didn’t like about The Andy Griffith Show was that Andy Taylor initially didn’t have someone he could bounce jokes off of. His character needed someone for comic relief. Griffith didn’t like the fact that his character was the main focus of the show at first.  

“That’s what I didn’t like about the show,” Griffith told the Television Academy Foundation. “They had me as sheriff, justice of the peace, editor of the paper, and I’d tell little funny stories about people around town. That would have lasted maybe two weeks. I didn’t like that about the concept.”

Andy Griffith said Don Knotts made ‘The Andy Griffith Show’ a hit

Don Knotts and Andy Griffith on 'The Andy Griffith Show' | Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images
Don Knotts and Andy Griffith on ‘The Andy Griffith Show’ | Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images

Griffith said Don Knotts called him after his show was cancelled. Griffith contacted a producer and Knotts was later added to The Andy Griffith Show cast. He said the show improved after Knotts came aboard.

Griffith said he was happy to have Knotts and that he was the real star of the show. He was able to play the “straight man” and Knotts was the one who made all the jokes. “That’s what made the show a hit; it was Don,” said Griffith during his Television Academy Foundation interview.

Andy Griffith’s movies and TV shows

Griffith made his television debut in 1955 in a teleplay titled No Time for Sergeants. In 1957, he appeared in the film A Face in the Crowd. Griffith starred in the film version of No Time for Sergeants in 1958. That same year, he appeared in the movie Onionhead.

Griffith starred in The Andy Griffith Show for eight years. The series led to spinoffs, including Mayberry R.F.D. and The New Andy Griffith Show. In 2003, the cast reunited for a TV special titled Back to Mayberry. Griffith is also known for his appearances in Matlock, Salvage 1, From Here to Eternity, and Centennial.

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