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Biography #2

Andy Griffith (born June 1, 1926) is an American actor, writer and producer from Mount Airy, North Carolina. He was a genuine country boy who made sophisticated humor based on his own background.

Griffith is best known as Sheriff Andy Taylor in the popular 1960s television series The Andy Griffith Show and in the title role in the 1980s television series Matlock.

The Andy Griffith Show, which aired from 1960 to 1968, became an instant hit with its American audience. Viewers immediately felt a connection with Taylor, his son Opie (Ron Howard), Aunt Bee (Frances Bavier), Deputy Barney Fife (Don Knotts), Gomer Pyle (Jim Nabors), Goober Pyle (George Lindsey) and the entire town of Mayberry.

Griffith started out as a stand-up comedian. His first success was a 1953 live recording of What it was, was football, a story about a country boy at his first football game, delighting in the big orange drinks and the boys running up and down the cow pasture in the awfulest fight I most ever saw and "these purty girls a-wearin' these little-bitty short dresses, and a-dancin' around. Later that year, he recorded Number One Street", telling the story of a rural family travelling to Florida on United States Highway 1.

By 1954, he was on Broadway, starring in No Time for Sergeants, a play about a country boy in the air force, made into a film in 1959 and considered the direct inspiration for Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C..

In 1959, Griffith starred in A Face in the Crowd. Again, he played a country boy and entertainer, but this time as a terrifying psychopath who used the rube pose to rise to political power. This film showcased Griffith's powerful talents as a dramatic actor.

After his show was cancelled in 1968, Griffith had several series that were not successful such as The Headmaster (1970), The New Andy Griffith Show (1971) and Salvage I (1979). He also starred in many television films such as Strangers In 7A (1972) and Winter Kill (1974). In 1981 Griffith won an Emmy nomination for his role in the TV film Murder In Texas and in 1983 won further acclaim for his role as a homicidal villain in the TV film Murder In Coweta County.

Article text released under CC-BY-SA. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Andy Griffith" (16-Jun-2004)