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TCM, TV Land to pay tribute to Griffith

  |   July 4, 2012 at 9:13 AM
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LOS ANGELES, July 4 (UPI) -- U.S. cable networks TV Land and TCM announced plans to honor the late actor Andy Griffith with marathons of his shows and movies.

Griffith died Tuesday at his home in North Carolina. He was 86.

TV Land says it is running blocks of "The Andy Griffith Show" Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday.

"We are deeply saddened by the passing of our dear friend, Andy Griffith," Larry W. Jones, president of TV Land, said in a statement. "His contributions to the entertainment industry and his role as Sheriff Andy Taylor will live forever in the minds and hearts of generations of television viewers past, present and yet to come. The entire TV Land staff will miss him and our thoughts go out to his family."

"The Andy Griffith Show" has been part of the network's line-up for more than a decade. In 2003, TV Land erected a statue in Raleigh, N.C., depicting the famous opening sequence featuring Griffith and a young Ron Howard in their roles of Sheriff Andy and Opie Taylor walking hand-in-hand. Then in 2004, the network unveiled a replica of the bronze statue in Mount Airy, N.C.,Griffith's birthplace and the town after which Mayberry was modeled. Also in 2004, the cast of the show was honored with the Legend Award at the 2nd annual TV Land Awards.

Turner Classic Movies said it will pay tribute to Griffith's big-screen legacy Wednesday with screenings of the films "A Face in the Crowd," "No Time for Sergeants," "Hearts of the West" and "Onionhead."

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