‘The Andy Griffith Show’: One of Hollywood’s Most Legendary Stuntmen Was a Member of the Mayberry Club

In 1961, The Andy Griffith Show’s Sherriff Taylor was invited to join an exclusive Mayberry men’s club. And one of the members was a legendary Hollywood stuntman.

The character, George Bronson, wasn’t the talented daredevil that we speak of, though. Instead, it was Bronson’s actor, George DeNormand. And the actor was so talented that he landed himself right in the Stuntmen Hall of Fame.

DeNormand was a double for old Hollywood stars like Spencer Tracey, Boris Karloff, and Bela Lugosi. He also trained fellow stuntmen and stars to do their own risky scenes. And he was always willing to fill in whenever a movie called for some tumbling work.

According to his IMDb bio, The famed double learned his craft by serving in the military and working as a professional boxer for a few years.

During his career, which spanned from 1929 to 1970, DeNormand worked as a stunt double in 203 projects. And because he was so dedicated to his craft, he earned himself a highly respected reputation in the industry.

In a 2007 edition of Classic Cliffhangers, author Hank Davis highlighted George DeNormand as a dependable stuntman who could always pull off the “more demanding scenes.” And he noted that the actor never complained about the toll that the job took on his body.

But what did bother DeNormand was that his costumes would get in the way during his epic fight scenes.

“Nobody in real life would wear a cape if he planned on getting into a fistfight” he once told Davis while chatting about his work on The Lone Ranger.

‘The Andy Griffith Show’ Guest Star Continued to Pull Off “Whammys’ Until it was Physically Impossible

George DeNormand didn’t give up his risky career as he aged. However, he couldn’t pull off as many moves as he could when he was a young man. So to fill in for long work gaps, he moved on to acting gigs.

In the 1950s and 1960s, DeNormand starred in hit series such as The Dick Van Dyke ShowAdventures of SupermanThe Andy Griffith ShowAlfred Hitchcock PresentsPerry Mason, and Batman. He was also made regular appearances in all of the Westerns of the era.

By the late 1960s, DeNormand thought his time with stunts was over. But he continued to pull off as many “whammies” as he could.

A whammy is a stunt that is too hard for a regular actor but not hazardous enough to justify bringing on a stuntman. He pulled off his last whammy at 73 years old for Tora! Tora! Tora!

However, George DeNormand continued acting until he 1976, when he passed away from cancer.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button