12 Secrets Barney Fife Doesn’t Want Anyone To Know

#7 Floyd Suffered a Mobility-Impairing Stroke

Howard McNear, the actor who played Floyd, required a great deal of assistance on-set after suffering a devastating stroke mid-way through the series. Not to be thwarted by intense pain when standing and weakness throughout his left side, the actor insisted on remaining in the show. The entire set came together to create hidden mobility aids for him–like a stool with a special back–to empower him to keep working.

#6 Blood Isn’t Thicker Than Water

Barney and Andy were originally slated to be written into the show as distant cousins. Producers believed that this would create the illusion of closeness, but it simply wasn’t necessary. After recognizing their on-screen chemistry, they re-wrote their histories and made them childhood friends instead. You can still catch a few references to cousinhood in early episodes!

#5 Like Father, Like Son

Outside of the show, Andy Griffith was a dedicated and doting father. But that dedication eventually filtered over to his on-set son, Ron Howard (known on the show as Opie). The pair were so close that fans frequently mistook little Ron to be his actual son off-set even though that simply wasn’t the case.

#4 Andy? Angie? Ange?

Nicknames–they’re common in the entertainment industry. Not even Andy himself could escape the nickname train, with Barney frequently referring to him as “Ange” on the show. It was a mashup of his first and last names, honoring the actor for who he truly was. This little-known tidbit only became obvious if you knew what you were looking for, with many fans confusing “Ange” for “And.”

#3 Andy Sang the Theme Song (Once)

Despite the fact that his rendition never became the main introductory theme in the show. Andy Griffith did once sing the whistling tune. Unfortunately, his singing chops weren’t quite as polished as his acting chops. Despite the fact that Griffith wasn’t necessarily a bad singer, the whistled introduction remained in place for the rest of the series.