Ron Howard

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Ron Howard
Ron Howard 2011 Shankbone 3.JPG
Howard at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival Vanity Fair party
BornRonald William Howard
(1954-03-01) March 1, 1954 (age 60)
Duncan, Oklahoma, U.S.
Alma materUniversity of Southern California
OccupationActor, director, producer
Years active1956–present
Spouse(s)Cheryl Alley (1975-present, 4 children.)
ChildrenBryce Dallas Howard (b. 1981), Jocelyn Carlyle (twin, b. 1985), Paige Howard (twin, b. 1985). Reed Cross (b. 1987.)
ParentsJean Speegle Howard and Rance Howard
Relatives1 grandson and 1 granddaughter.
 
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Ron Howard
Ron Howard 2011 Shankbone 3.JPG
Howard at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival Vanity Fair party
BornRonald William Howard
(1954-03-01) March 1, 1954 (age 60)
Duncan, Oklahoma, U.S.
Alma materUniversity of Southern California
OccupationActor, director, producer
Years active1956–present
Spouse(s)Cheryl Alley (1975-present, 4 children.)
ChildrenBryce Dallas Howard (b. 1981), Jocelyn Carlyle (twin, b. 1985), Paige Howard (twin, b. 1985). Reed Cross (b. 1987.)
ParentsJean Speegle Howard and Rance Howard
Relatives1 grandson and 1 granddaughter.

Ronald William "Ron" Howard (born March 1, 1954) is an American film director, producer and actor.

He came to prominence playing Opie Taylor in the sitcom The Andy Griffith Show for eight years, and later the teenaged Richie Cunningham in the sitcom Happy Days for six years.[1] He appeared in the films The Music Man in 1962, American Graffiti in 1973, and The Shootist in 1976, the latter during his run on Happy Days.

Howard made his directorial debut with the 1977 comedy Grand Theft Auto, and left Happy Days in 1980 to focus on directing. His films include Cocoon, Apollo 13, How the Grinch Stole Christmas and A Beautiful Mind, which earned Howard the Academy Award for Best Director. In 2002, Howard conceived the idea for the Fox/Netflix series Arrested Development, on which he also serves as producer and narrator, and plays a semi-fictionalized version of himself.

In 2003, Howard was awarded the National Medal of Arts.[2] Asteroid 12561 Howard is named after him. In 2013, Howard was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame.

Early life[edit]

Howard was born in Duncan, Oklahoma, the son of Jean Speegle Howard, an actress, and Rance Howard, a director, writer, and actor.[3] His father was born with the surname "Beckenholdt", and had taken the stage name "Howard" by 1948, for his acting career.[4][5] Rance Howard was serving three years in the United States Air Force at the time of Ron's birth.[6][7] The family moved to Hollywood in 1958, the year before the birth of his younger brother, Clint Howard. They rented a house on the block south of the Desilu Studios, where The Andy Griffith Show would later be filmed. They lived in Hollywood for at least three years, before moving to Burbank.

Howard was tutored at Desilu Studios in his younger years, and graduated from John Burroughs High School. He later attended the University of Southern California's School of Cinematic Arts but did not graduate.[8][9]

Career[edit]

Early acting roles and The Andy Griffith Show[edit]

Howard with Andy Griffith in The Andy Griffith Show, circa 1961

In 1959, Howard had his first credited film role, in The Journey. He appeared in June Allyson's CBS anthology series The DuPont Show with June Allyson in the episode "Child Lost"; in the The Twilight Zone episode "Walking Distance"; a few episodes of the first season of the sitcom Dennis the Menace, as Stewart, one of Dennis's friends; and in the 24th episode of The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis. Howard played "Timmy" (uncredited) in "Counterfeit Gun", Season 4, Episode 2 (1960) of the TV series, "The Cheyenne Show."

In 1960, Howard was cast as Opie Taylor in The Andy Griffith Show. Credited as "Ronny Howard", he portrayed the son of the title character (played by Andy Griffith) for all eight seasons of the show. After cancellation, the two would continue to keep in touch (primarily by phone) and would join themselves in two separate TV reunions, for nearly 45 years until Griffith's death in July 2012. As the news of his TV father's death was being reported, Howard released a statement:

"His love of creating, the joy he took in it whether it was drama or comedy or his music, was inspiring to grow up around. The spirit he created on the set of The Andy Griffith Show was joyful and professional all at once. It was an amazing environment. And I think it was a reflection of the way he felt about having the opportunity to create something that people could enjoy. It was always with respect and passion for the opportunity and really what it could offer people in a very unpretentious and earthy way. He felt he was always working in service of an audience he really respected and cared about. He was a great influence on me. His passing is sad. But he lived a great rich life."[10]

In the 1962 film version of "The Music Man," Howard played Winthrop Paroo, the child with the lisp; the film starred Robert Preston and Shirley Jones. He also starred in the 1963 film The Courtship of Eddie's Father, with Glenn Ford.

Billed as "Ronny Howard", he appeared as Barry Stewart on The Eleventh Hour, in the episode "Is Mr. Martian Coming Back?" in 1965; on I Spy, in the episode "Little Boy Lost", in 1966; as Henry Fonda's son in an ABC series, The Smith Family, in 1971–72; and as an underage Marine on M*A*S*H, in the episode "Sometimes You Hear the Bullet", in 1973. In the 1970s, he appeared in at least one episode of The Bold Ones, as a teenage tennis player with an illness.

Howard appeared on the 1969 Disneyland Records album The Story and Song from the Haunted Mansion. It featured the story of two teenagers, Mike (Howard) and Karen (Robie Lester), who get trapped inside the Haunted Mansion. Thurl Ravenscroft plays the Narrator, Pete Reneday plays the Ghost Host, and Eleanor Audley plays Madame Leota. Some of the effects and ideas that were planned but never permanently made it to the attraction are mentioned here: the Raven speaks in the Stretching Room, and the Hatbox Ghost is mentioned during the Attic scene. It was reissued in 1998 as a cassette tape titled A Spooky Night in Disney's Haunted Mansion and on CD in 2009.

In 1974 Howard guest starred as Seth Turner, the best friend of Jason Walton (Jon Walmsley), in The Waltons, "The Gift". In the episode, Seth wants to learn to play an instrument in his father's band, but it looks as if he will not have the time; he has been diagnosed with leukemia. The concept of death — and the unfairness of it all — is an extremely difficult one for Jason to accept, and it is up to Grandpa to help the boy through this crisis. Featured in the cast as Dr. McIvers is Ron Howard's father Rance Howard.

[11]

Film roles and Happy Days[edit]

Howard played Steve Bolander in George Lucas's coming-of-age film American Graffiti in 1973.[1] A role in an installment of series Love, American Style, titled "Love and The Happy Days",[12] led to his being cast as Richie Cunningham in the TV series Happy Days. Beginning in 1974, he played the likeable "buttoned-down" boy, in contrast to Henry Winkler's "greaser" Arthur "Fonzie"/"The Fonz" Fonzarelli. On the Happy Days set, he developed an on- and off-screen chemistry with series leads Winkler and Tom Bosley. The three remained friends until Bosley's death in October 2010.

In 1976, Howard played Gillom Rogers in the movie The Shootist, with John Wayne. Howard's last significant on-screen role was a reprisal of his famous role as Opie Taylor in the 1986 TV movie Return to Mayberry, an Andy Griffith Show reunion reuniting him with Griffith, Don Knotts, and most of the cast. He also appeared in two Happy Days TV reunions: 1992's The Happy Days Reunion Special, a retrospective hosted by Winkler that aired on ABC; and 2005's The Happy Days 30th Anniversary Reunion, where he was reunited with most of the surviving cast. Howard recently revealed that many of the exterior scenes filmed in Happy Days were actually shot in Munster, Indiana.

Directing[edit]

Before leaving Happy Days in 1980, Howard made his directing debut with the 1977 low-budget comedy/action film Grand Theft Auto.[1] This came after cutting a deal with Roger Corman, wherein Corman would let Howard direct a film in exchange for Howard starring in Eat My Dust!, with Christopher Norris.[1] Howard went on to direct several TV movies.[1] His big theatrical break came in 1982, with Night Shift, featuring Michael Keaton, Shelley Long, and Henry Winkler.[1]

Howard in June 2008 during the filming of Angels & Demons in Rome

He has since directed a number of high-visibility films, including Splash, Cocoon, Willow, Parenthood, Backdraft, Apollo 13, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, A Beautiful Mind (for which he won the Academy Award for Best Director), Cinderella Man, The Da Vinci Code, Angels & Demons, and Rush.

Howard's younger brother Clint has minor roles in most of his movies. He has also cast his father and mother in a number of roles. Both his wife Cheryl Howard and father Rance Howard appeared in Angels & Demons, as a CERN scientist and as Cardinal Beck, respectively.[13]

Howard showcased the world premiere of his film Frost/Nixon at the 2008 London Film Festival in October 2008.[14]

Howard was the recipient of the Austin Film Festival's 2009 Extraordinary Contribution to Filmmaking Award. Michael Keaton presented him with the Award.

Imagine Entertainment[edit]

Howard is the co-chairman, with Brian Grazer, of Imagine Entertainment, a film and television production company. Imagine has produced several films including Friday Night Lights, 8 Mile, and Inside Deep Throat, as well as the television series 24, Felicity, and Arrested Development. Howard also narrated Arrested Development.

In July 2012 it was announced Imagine had put in development Conquest for Showtime. A period drama based on the 16th century conquest of the Aztecs by Spanish Conquistadors. To be directed by Howard, the series was originally planned as a feature film before it being decided that the project was more suited to television.[15]

As part of Imagine Entertainment, he appeared in a 1997 print ad for Milk – Where's your mustache?, in which he wore a cap for Imagine Entertainment and sported a milk mustache. Earlier versions show a younger Ronny Howard on the other side.

Filmography[edit]

Director[edit]

YearTitleNotes
1969Old PaintShort; credited as Ronny Howard
1969Deed of Derring-DoShort; credited as Ronny Howard
1969Cards, Cads, Guns, Gore and DeathShort; credited as Ronny Howard
1977Grand Theft Auto
1978Cotton CandyTV movie
1980SkywardTV movie; also executive producer
1981Through the Magic PyramidTV movie; also executive producer
1982Night Shift
1983LittleshotsTV movie; also executive producer
1984Splash
1985Cocoon
1986Gung HoAlso executive producer
1987Take FiveTV movie
1988Willow
1989Parenthood
1991Backdraft
1992Far and AwayAlso producer
1994The Paper
1995Apollo 13
1996Ransom
1999EDtvAlso producer
2000How the Grinch Stole ChristmasAlso producer
2001A Beautiful MindAlso producer
2003The MissingAlso producer
2005Cinderella ManAlso producer
2006The Da Vinci CodeAlso producer
2008Frost/NixonAlso producer
2009Angels & DemonsAlso producer
2011The DilemmaAlso producer
2013RushAlso producer
2013Made in AmericaAlso producer
2015In the Heart of the SeaAlso producer
2015Inferno

Producer[edit]

YearFilmNotes
1980Leo and LoreeExecutive producer
1981Skyward ChristmasExecutive producer; TV movie
1983When Your Lover LeavesExecutive producer; TV movie
1984–1985Maximum SecurityExecutive producer; TV series
1985No Greater GiftExecutive producer; TV special
1985Into Thin AirExecutive producer; TV movie
1986The Lone-Star KidExecutive producer; TV movie
1987Take FiveExecutive producer; TV movie
1987No Man's LandExecutive producer
1988PoisonExecutive producer; TV movie
1988VibesExecutive Producer
1988Clean and Sober
1989The 'Burbs
1990–1991Parenthood (1990 TV series)Executive producer; TV series
1991The DoorsUncredited
1991Closet LandExecutive producer
1996The Chamber
1997Inventing the Abbotts
1998From the Earth to the MoonTV miniseries
1998–2000Sports NightExecutive producer; TV series
1998–2002FelicityExecutive producer; TV series
1999–2001The PJsExecutive producer; TV series
1999Student AffairsTV movie
1999Mullholland DriveExecutive producer; TV movie
1999Beyond the MatDocumentary
2000WonderlandTV series
2000Silicon FolliesExecutive producer; TV movie
2001The BeastExecutive producer; TV series
2003The SnobsExecutive producer; TV series
2003The BreakExecutive producer; TV movie
2004Alamo
2005Inside Deep ThroatUncredited
2006Curious George
2006–presentCurious George (TV series)TV series
2008Changeling
2010Curious George 2: Follow That Monkey!
2010–presentParenthood (2010 TV series)Executive producer; TV series
2011Restless
2011Cowboys & Aliens
2011When You Find MeExecutive producer; short film
2012Katy Perry: Part of MeExecutive producer
2012The Great EscapeExecutive producer; TV series
2003, 2013Arrested DevelopmentExecutive producer; TV series

Actor[edit]

Film[edit]

YearFilmRoleNotes
1956Frontier WomanBit PartUncredited
1959The JourneyBilly Rhinelander
1961Five Minutes to LiveBobbyAKA Door to Door Maniac
1962The Music ManWinthrop Paroo
1963The Courtship of Eddie's FatherEddie
1965Village of the GiantsGenius
1970The Wild CountryVirgil Tanner
1970SmokeChrisTV movie
1973American GraffitiSteve Bolander
1973Happy Mother's Day, Love GeorgeJohnny
1974LocustsDonny FletcherTV movie
1974The Spikes GangLes Richter
1974The MigrantsLyle BarlowTV movie
1975Huckleberry FinnHuckleberry FinnTV movie
1976The First Nudie MusicalAuditioning actorUncredited
1976Eat My Dust!Hoover Niebold
1976The ShootistGillom Rogers
1976I'm a FoolAndyTV movie
1977Grand Theft AutoSam Freeman
1979More American GraffitiSteve Bolander
1980Act of LoveLeon CybulkowskiTV movie
1981Bitter HarvestNed De VriesTV movie
1981Fire on the MountainLee MackieTV movie
1982Night ShiftAnnoying Sax Player/Boy Making out with GirlfriendUncredited
1983When Your Lover LeavesTV movie; uncredited; also executive producer
1986Return to MayberryOpie TaylorTV movie
1988Channel 99HimselfTV movie
1992The Magical World of Chuck JonesHimselfDocumentary
1998One VisionHimselfDocumentary
1998Welcome to HollywoodHimself
2000The IndependentHimself
2000How the Grinch Stole ChristmasWhoville TownspersonUncredited
2001Osmosis JonesTom ColonicVoice
2001A Beautiful MindMan at Governor's BallUncredited
2004Tell Them Who You AreHimselfDocumentary
2007In the Shadow of the MoonHimselfDocumentary
2011The Death and Return of SupermanMax's SonShort
2013From Up on Poppy HillAkio KazamaVoice

Television[edit]

YearTitleRoleNotes
1959Johnny RingoRicky Parrot1 episode: "The Accused"
1959Five Fingers1 episode: "Station Break"
1959The Twilight ZoneWilcox Boy1 episode: "Walking Distance"
1959The DuPont Show with June AllysonWim Wegless1 episode: "Child Lost"
1959Dennis the MenaceStewart6 episodes
1959The Many Loves of Dobie GillisDan Adams/Georgie/Little Boy with Ray Gun4 episodes
1959General Electric TheaterBarnaby Baxter/Randy2 episodes
1959Hennesey with Jackie CooperWalker"The Baby Sitter"
1960The Danny Thomas ShowOpie Taylor1 episode: "Danny Meets Andy Griffith"
1960CheyenneTimmy1 episode: "Counterfeit Gun"; uncredited
1960Pete and GladysTommy1 episode: "The Goat Story"
1960–1968The Andy Griffith ShowOpie Taylor209 episodes
1962Route 66Chet Duncan1 episode: "Poor Little Kangaroo Rat"
1962The New BreedTommy Simms1 episode: "So Dark the Night"
1963The Eleventh HourBarry Stewart1 episode: "Is Mr. Martian Coming Back?"
1964The Great AdventureDaniel Waterhouse1 episode: "Plague"
1964Dr. KildareJerry Prentice1 episode: "A Candle in the Window"
1964The FugitiveGus1 episode: "Cry Uncle"
1965The Big ValleyTommy1 episode: "Night of the Wolf"
1966Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.Opie Taylor1 episode: "Opie Joins the Marines"
1966I SpyAlan Loden1 episode: "Little Boy Lost"
1967The MonroesTimothy Prescott1 episode: "Teaching the Tiger to Purr"
1967Gentle BenJody Cutler1 episode: "Green-Eyed Bear"
1968Mayberry R.F.D.Opie Taylor1 episode: "Andy and Helen Get Married"
1968The F.B.I.Jess Orkin1 episode: "The Runaways"
1968LancerTurk Caudle/Willy2 episodes
1969Judd for the DefensePhil Beeton1 episode: "Between the Dark and the Daylight"
1969Daniel BooneLuke1 episode: "A Man Before His Time"
1969GunsmokeJamie1 episode: "Charlie Noon"
1969Land of the GiantsJodar1 episode: "Genus At Work"
1970The HeadmasterTony Landis1 episode: "Will the Real Mother of Tony Landis Please Stand Up?"
1970LassieGary1 episode: "Gary Here Comes Glory!" Part 1 & 2
1971The Smith FamilyBob Smith39 episodes
1972Love, American StyleRichard 'Richie' Cunningham1 episode: "Love and the Happy Days"
1972The Bold Ones: The New DoctorsCory Merlino1 episode: "Discovery at Fourteen"
1972BonanzaTed Hoag1 episode: "The Initiation"
1973M*A*S*HPrivate Walter/ Wendell Peterson1 episode: "Sometimes You Hear the Bullet"
1974The WaltonsSeth Turner1 episode: "The Gift"
1974Happy DaysRichard 'Richie' Cunningham171 episodes
1976Laverne & ShirleyRichie Cunningham2 episodes
1980The Fonz and the Happy Days GangRichie Cunningham (voice)1 episode: "King for a Day"
1999The SimpsonsHimself (voice)2 episodes
1999FrasierStephen (voice)1 episode: "Good Samaritan"
2003, 2013Arrested DevelopmentNarrator, Himself68 episodes; also executive producer

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Stated on Inside the Actors Studio, 1999
  2. ^ Lifetime Honors – National Medal of Arts
  3. ^ "Ron Howard Biography (1954–)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved March 5, 2010. 
  4. ^ "Actress keeps name of her famous family". August 3, 2004. Retrieved September 18, 2012. 
  5. ^ Gray, Beverly (2003). Ron Howard: From Mayberry to the Moon-- and Beyond. Thomas Nelson. p. 6. ISBN 1-55853-970-0. 
  6. ^ Gray, Beverly (2003). Ron Howard: from Mayberry to the moon-- and beyond. Nashville, TN: Rutledge Hill Press. pp. 7–8. ISBN 1-55853-970-0. 
  7. ^ Estrin, Eric (Feb 22, 2010). "Ron Howard's 'Breakthrough'?: Ronald Reagan". The Wrap. Retrieved May 6, 2011. 
  8. ^ "Notable Alumni". cinema-usc.edu. Retrieved September 18, 2012. 
  9. ^ Devine, Mary (1998). International Dictionary of University Histories. Taylor & Francis. p. 621. ISBN 1884964230. 
  10. ^ Nikki Finke (July 3, 2012). "EXCLUSIVE: Ron Howard On Andy Griffith". deadline.com. Retrieved September 18, 2012. 
  11. ^ MSN Entertainment The Waltons: The Gift
  12. ^ Love and the Happy Days/Love and the Newscasters
  13. ^ "Angels & Demons IMDb credits". imdb.com. Retrieved August 27, 2010. 
  14. ^ "London Film Festival". Spoonfed.co.uk. September 24, 2008. Retrieved March 5, 2010. 
  15. ^ Showtime & Imagine Team For Aztec Drama Directed By Ron Howard & Penned By Jose Rivera – Deadline.com

External links[edit]