Gomer Pyle Was Supposed To Be Played By A Different ‘The Andy Griffith Show’ Actor
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While Jim Nabors is known for his iconic role as Gomer Pyle in the classic television series, The Andy Griffith Show, the part was supposed to go to another actor.
Andy Griffith saw Nabors perform in a nightclub and was instantly impressed with his natural talent. After watching Nabors’ routine, he could not think of anyone better to play the part of Gomer. At that time, George Lindsey, who later portrayed Goober Pyle, was promised the character. Still, Griffith asked the show producer to hold off on a final casting decision until Nabors read for the part.
Nabors made his television debut as Gomer in the episode “Man in a Hurry.” When Lindsey found out about the casting choice, the actor was outraged. In Lindsey’s memoir, Goober in a Nutshell, the actor admitted that he “went completely nuts” after watching Nabors on the show for the first time. Lindsey wrote:
“When I was sitting in my living room after watching that first episode featuring Gomer, I jumped up from my chair in an absolute rage and kicked the tube out of the television set while screaming, ‘That’s my part, that’s my part, that’s my part!’ I just went completely nuts. I was so upset about not getting that role. This was the perfect part for me.”
For more on The Andy Griffith Show, check out the following video.