A Seymour woman and two of her grandsons had the opportunity to be extras in “Mayberry Man: The Series” when some scenes were filmed in Danville last month.
Karen EuDaly was in the “Mayberry Man” movie released last year that filmed in Hendricks County in 2020, where she was on the set every day for five days and loved it. When she saw there was going to be a series, she was excited to be part of that and to get her grandsons involved, too.
Cort and Stark Howell, sons of actor Hoke Howell, an actor known for portraying Dud Wash on “The Andy Griffith Show,” released “Mayberry Man” as an independent film. Now, the brothers and most of the movie’s cast are taking the next step to create “Mayberry Man: The Series.”
EuDaly said she knew right away she wanted to be in the series, and her grandsons, Randy Gross III and Jackson Davis, were extras, as well.
“Filming started on Sept. 13 in Danville, and we were there Thursday, Sept. 15, for a day shoot and Friday night on Sept. 16 for all night. Then on the 17th, we slept,” she said.
EuDaly planned to go back Oct. 26 for more filming, but the boys were finished with their parts.
The series stemmed from the “Mayberry Man” movie, a family comedy that tells the fictional story of a conceited movie star who is caught in the act of speeding in a small southern town and is sentenced by a judge to attend the Mayberry Fest, a festival celebrating “The Andy Griffith Show.” Through this journey, he discovers the true meaning of friendship and family.
The TV series cast is the same as the movie with some new additions, like Ronnie Schell, best known for playing the part of Duke Slater in “Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.”
Filming locations for the TV series will be much the same as the movie with filing in Danville, Mount Airy, North Carolina, and California.
EuDaly found out about “Mayberry Man: The Series” when there was a Facebook Live event to let followers of the “Mayberry Man” film page know there was going to be a big announcement.
“People had been talking about maybe another movie coming out. Then Stark Howell, who wrote and directed the movie, made the announcement about writing the TV series,” she said.
EuDaly said her grandsons became involved when she told them there was going to be a Mayberry TV show filming and they could be on TV if they would like to be.
Gross, 10, said he and Davis had a couple of Christmas scenes they were in where there was a parade and another scene where everybody associated with “Mayberry Man” gathered at a little house where they all stood in rows.
“We also had some scenes in the Royal Theater in Danville, where the three of us were on a bench together,” he said.
Gross is a sixth-grader and said he was excited to be part of the filming.
Six-year-old Davis said they were in some background scenes, and he thought it was fun.
EuDaly said there was a lot of sitting around and waiting between scenes, but the boys were really good, and both of them have watched “The Andy Griffith Show” with her.
Davis said his favorite character on the TV show is Barney Fife because he’s funny, and Gross’ favorite character is Gomer Pyle.
Gross’ dad, Randy Gross II, said he was a kid when he used to watch “The Andy Griffith Show” with his grandpa, and he was glad his son got to have the experience to be part of “Mayberry Man: The Series.”
“In today’s society, there’s not a lot of old-fashioned American values, especially for the younger generation, so it’s nice he could be involved in something like that,” he said.
Justen Davis, father of Jackson, said he thought it was great, and he loved it for him to be able to do something that not a lot of people get an opportunity to do and something he can look back on and say he was part of.
EuDaly said while on the set last month, she got reacquainted with several people who had been in the film with her two years ago and they had also come back to be in the TV series.
“There were friends I’d made from Illinois, from Georgia and there were a couple from California. Then the stars of the show were back, plus the tribute artists,” she said. “So I reconnected with a bunch of people I met making the movie.”
As for the plot of the TV series, she said they haven’t been given a lot of information about it yet, but it picks up where the movie left off.
“They don’t film the scenes in order. For example, we had a scene at the end of the festival filmed in Danville,” EuDaly said. “They filmed the festival in North Carolina after we had already filmed the scenes that would come after that here in Indiana.”
Next month, more filming for the TV show will take place in California. Then the crew will be coming back to Indiana next May to wrap things up at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
EuDaly said after that, hopefully, Season 1 will be out by next September.
“They were hoping to have enough to make six episodes but didn’t have enough funding,” she said. “There will probably be another season in a couple of years.”
On Thursday night, Cort Howell made an announcement on Facebook Live that there would definitively be a fifth episode and they’re still hoping for six.
It is yet to be determined where to see the “Mayberry Man: The Series” once it is completed, but the “Mayberry Man” movie can be seen on Amazon Prime.