In all three versions of “No Time For Sergeants” — TV, Broadway, movie — Andy Griffith played Will Stockdale, backwoods Georgian turned Air Force private. The naive Stockdale views latrine duty as an opportunity to shine and rigs the toilet seats to salute the inspecting officers.
“We had to have a big production meeting to decide whether we could show those toilet seats [in the movie],” Griffith told me in 1979. Although permission was granted, he said actually filming the famous scene was a let-down.
“On the stage, we had had had a man lying down with a handle in his hand — all the audience saw was me stomping and the seats flying up. But for the movie the latrine scene had to shot in pieces, and we never got the immediate response. I remember the disappointment I felt on the set that day, although I knew the laugh would be there…. That’s movies.”