How much was Andy Griffith worth?
|Net Worth:||$65 Million|
|Date of Birth:||June 1, 1926|
|Country:||United States of America|
About Andy Griffith
Andy Samuel Griffith (June 1, 1926 – July 3, 2012) was an American actor, comedian, television producer, southern gospel singer, and writer with an estimated net worth of $65 million. Andy Griffith began his career in the music and television industries in the 1950s after earning his Bachelor of Music degree from the University of North Carolina.
He spent nearly seven decades in the entertainment business and drew attention with his folksy-friendly characters, gruff but friendly voice, and southern drawl.
Andy Griffith first gained popularity when he landed the dramatic role in A Face in the Crowd. He was born on June 1, 1926, in Mount Airy, North Carolina. He was the only child to Carl and Geneva Griffith. When he was a baby, Andy spent most of his childhood with relatives until his parents were able to buy a home. While attending the Mount Airy High School, he cultivated an interest in various arts and began participating in the drama program of his school.
After graduating from high school, he enrolled at the University of North Carolina and graduated from it in 1949 with a Bachelor’s degree in music. At the same time, he landed roles in numerous student operettas such as The Mikado, The Chimes of Normandy, The Gondoliers, and H.M.S. Pinafore to name a few.
In the early 1950s, thanks to his gruff and friendly voice, Griffith began working as a monologist. He eventually auditioned for a role in the teleplay No Time for Sergeants from March 1955, which he won.
Besides earning millions from his own show (The Andy Griffith Show) and from his multiple appearances in numerous productions, the talented gospel singer became a millionaire from his music. In the mid-1950s, Andy developed an interest in acting and took several acting/drama classes. His film debut came in 1957 during the film A Face in the Crowd.
Thanks to his breakthrough, and first role, of the “country boy” Larry ‘Lonesome’ Rhodes. Griffith began earning immediately from his acting career. After a few additional roles on television, Andy was offered a deal with the CBS television network for the creation of his own show.
The series named The Andy Griffith Show debuted in 1960 and were on air for eight consecutive years. The talented actor took part in all eight seasons and 249 episodes, from which he eventually earned nearly $1 million per years, as well as several awards and nominations, including multiple Emmys for his highly-praised comedic performances.
The success of Andy Griffith comes from his relentlessness and abilities to flourish in various fields of the entertainment business. At the time he was still growing an interest in acting, Griffith was a rising star in the music industry. His debut studio album titled What It Was, Was Football was released in 1953 through Capitol Records, with whom he signed a multi-year recording deal.
From 1953 to 2005, the talented southern gospel singer released twenty studio commercially-acclaimed studio albums that found prosperity not just in the United States but in other countries around the world such as Canada and the United Kingdom.
The ability of the television superstar to mix his acting with singing is the main reason why he found so much success. During the seven decades that he was an active actor and director, Griffith also starred in many television projects. Among some of his most notable appearances are in the films No Time for Sergeants, Angel in My Pocket, Rustlers Rhapsody, and Spy Hard.
Griffith’s Total Net Worth
Andy Griffith’s career started with a home run. His role as Larry ‘Lonesome’ Rhodes in A Face in the Crowd was critically acclaimed and remains popular today, with an 88% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. In cinema, Griffith is also known for No Time for Sergeants, Waitress, Return to Mayberry, Spy Hard and Play the Game. In his film acting career he appeared in about 40 films and TV movies. It is estimated that from his film career, Griffith earned about $20 million. That includes his appearance in Murder in Coweta County where he starred opposite American singer-songwriter, Johnny Cash.
Way back in the late 1960s, Andy Griffith is reported to have been earning $1 million dollars per year from the The Andy Griffith Show. That doesn’t sound like a lot, however after adjusting for inflation. That amount was equivalent to about $6.6 million at the time of his death in 2012 dollars.
What Andy did with the money however, is another story. Had he simply kept one year’s salary of $1 million dollars in the bank and it was withdrawn today, it would still be the same $1 million cash he earned from 1968; it would just relatively be worth much less than when he first made it but would have earned some small interest. If he had invested the $1 million, he would have had to make some 560% return on his investment for it to be worth $6.6 million at the time of his death in 2012. Which is certainly possible. In fact, had he invested just $1 million into the entire S&P 500 index in 1986, by 2012 that money would have compounded into a sum of $60.5 million. Yes, you read that right. That is a 9.55% average return (plus reinvestment of all dividends) compounded over 44 years.
Nobody publicly knows exactly what Griffith did with his earnings. Money that would be worth next to nothing if he kept it in a bank or worth over 60x the amount if he put it all in the stock market, never touched any of it and compounded returns while also reinvesting all dividends. An impossible event, however it is likely that he invested a small amount of his earnings, and he earned a great deal for his time, too.
In total, from his film and television work, it added up to an estimated $35 million dollars. Of course that is the pre-tax amount and having earned an average of about $670,000 per year during his 52 year career (1957-2009). A lot has changed in federal and state taxes over the years. However it is unlikely he paid less than overall 45% on his total career earnings in tax (having earned more in some years than in others). It is also likely that he saved some on his taxes using legal tax optimizations which are common among high earning individuals, however not much. In total, Andy Griffith’s after-tax earnings were likely around $19.25 million.
It seems probable that Griffith may have realized investment gains of close to triple that over the years, even after tax, in any case they would unlikely have been liquidated even after his death. The market dipped majorly in 2008 causing likely causing losses in Griffith’s investments equal to have them been more than cut in half. However at the time of his death in 2012, the market had recovered. Griffith’s investments added over $50 million to his total net worth in this calculation.
Andy Griffith was married three times. To Barbara Griffith between 1949–1972. To Solica Casuto between 1973–1981. Finally he married Cindi Knight in 1983, who he remained with until his death. It is likely, considering he had two children with Barbara Griffith, and was with Solica Casuto during high earnings years. That he may have sent around $6 million in that direction, while he was still alive. His children likely inherited a large portion of his wealth after he passed in 2012. Overall, it is estimated that Andy Griffith’s net worth may have been around $65 million. Perhaps, more.
Andy Griffith is one of the most distinguished actors and singers of the 20th century. The gospel singer began his career in his late thirties and quickly gained popularity with his abilities. During his career, which spanned over seven decades, he released numerous singles and starred in multiple films and series. Besides an estimated net worth of $65 million, and a lot of awards and nominations (including Tony and Emmy Awards), he also won many prestigious accolades. Among some of his long list of achievements are a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, a Grammy Award, and a Presidential medal of Freedom.