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'Dukes of Hazzard' Star John Schneider Opens up About His Relationship With Denver Pyle

Junie Sihlangu
May 31, 2021
11:50 A.M.
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On “Dukes of Hazzard,” John Schneider played the role of Bo Duke while Denver Pyle took on the role of Uncle Jesse. The pair had quite a close relationship until Pyle’s death.


“Dukes of Hazzard” aired on television from 1979 until 1985. During that time, John Schneider, 61, built a lasting friendship with co-star Denver Pyle who played the role of Uncle Jesse.

Schneider was only 18 when he moved from Atlanta to California to act in the series. He had just graduated from high school when he had his big break on the fan-favorite show.

John Schneider visits SiriusXM Studios on December 3, 2014, in New York City | Photo: Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images


When “Closer Weekly,” asked him to share some of his favorite memories from shooting the show, the actor mentioned Pyle. He recalled sitting with Pyle talking about “The Doris Day Show.”

The older actor starred as Buck Webb on “The Doris Day Show,” and he and the "Dancing With the Stars” alum would discuss what it was like for him to work with stars John Wayne and John Ford.


Schneider also recalled how they would talk about life as a general topic as well. He confessed that he actually regarded Pyle as a real-life uncle, and they were “thick as thieves” for all the years they worked together.

Sadly, Pyle passed away in 1997 at the age of 77 from lung cancer. Less than two weeks before his death, he’d gotten the strength to attend the unveiling of his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.


Years after the “Dukes of Hazzard” finished, Schneider continued to establish himself as a well-known all-around star. He’s done some theater, recording work, and more acting jobs on television.

Some people might recognize him from “Smallville” and “The Haves and the Have Nots.” He’s also the co-founder of Children’s Miracle Network, along with famous singer Marie Osmond.


Besides those accomplishments, Schneider has also worked as a producer, a writer, and a director. His latest film is titled “Switched,” and it is currently streaming on Pure Flix/Sony.

He’s featured in more than 75 television series and movies so far. The actor has appeared in “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman” and has managed to release ten music albums under his name.


In turn, the late Pyle made his mark on television early on by portraying the patriarch of the Darling family on “The Andy Griffith Show.” Schnieder's friend had hundreds of smaller roles on television too.

However, he found widespread recognition as Uncle Jesse on “The Dukes of Hazzard.” Before all of those, he’d starred in several Western films and also had a pivotal role in “Bonnie and Clyde.”