Knotts died Friday night of pulmonary and respiratory complications at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Beverly Hills, said Paul Ward, a spokesman for the cable network TV Land, which airs "The Andy Griffith Show," and another Knotts hit, "Three's Company."
Unspecified health problems had forced him to cancel an appearance in his native Morgantown in August 2005.
I really feel that he was the reason that Three's Company lasted as long as it did, even as it plodded along after the loss of the Ropers and Chrissy. The Roper's were great, but Mr. Furley's outfits and reactions to (basically the same) outrageous situations every week really saved the show. His nerd who thought he was macho character (and facial expressions) stole scenes.
I was obsessed with The Incredible Mr. Limpet when I was a kid. I watched that movie so much (and it always seemed to be on TV!).
The piece in Esquire is a pretty great read. Ebert is one of the last of his kind in terms of understanding the role of a film critic (or the role of any critic, for that matter) and relaying the necessity of that role to the general public.