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John R. Cherry III is an American film director and screenwriter, most notable for directing movies starring Jim Varney as Ernest P. Worrell. He based the character on a man who worked for his dad who thought that he knew everything but did not know anything. His only appearances in "Ernest" films were Ernest Goes to Africa as a customer and Ernest in the Army as Sergeant Ben Kovsky. He was the executive vice president of the Nashville-based Carden and Cherry advertising agency, for which the "Ernest" character was developed. He is currently the founder and Co-chairman of the board of "The National Fine Arts Title Registry". A native of Nashville, Cherry attended the Ringling School of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida. He currently lives in Nashville, Tennessee with his wife. He has 3 children: Josh and Emilie from a previous marriage and his son Chapman from his current marriage with Ruthie Cherry.Cherry's son, Josh appeared in Ernest in the Army as Corporal Davis.

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