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Also Known As: Ronny Howard, Ronald William Howard, Ronny Howard Died:
Born: March 1, 1954 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Duncan, Oklahoma, USA Profession: producer, director, screenwriter, executive, actor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Ever since he made his acting debut when he was less than two years old, former television star-turned-film director Ron Howard enjoyed legendary status on both sides of the camera. After he charmed television audiences as Opie Taylor, the loveable son of a small town sheriff on "The Andy Griffith Show" (CBS, 1960-68), Howard cemented his fame as Richie Cunningham on the iconic series, "Happy Days" (ABC, 1974-1984). Though he was dogged for the remainder of his career with being identified by fans as Taylor or Cunningham, he did manage to reinvent himself as an Oscar-winning director of some of cinema's biggest commercial successes. Sometimes criticized for being overly sentimental and directing with a heavy hand, Howard nonetheless topped the box office on several occasions with films like "Splash" (1984), "Cocoon" (1985) and "Parenthood" (1989). By the time he directed the critically acclaimed and award-winning "Apollo 13" (1995), "A Beautiful Mind" (2001) and "The Da Vinci Code" (2006), Howard was in the upper echelon of directors working in Hollywood and his producing partnership with Brian Grazer one of the most successful in Hollywood. Even his critically maligned blockbusters like "Dr. Seuss'...

Ever since he made his acting debut when he was less than two years old, former television star-turned-film director Ron Howard enjoyed legendary status on both sides of the camera. After he charmed television audiences as Opie Taylor, the loveable son of a small town sheriff on "The Andy Griffith Show" (CBS, 1960-68), Howard cemented his fame as Richie Cunningham on the iconic series, "Happy Days" (ABC, 1974-1984). Though he was dogged for the remainder of his career with being identified by fans as Taylor or Cunningham, he did manage to reinvent himself as an Oscar-winning director of some of cinema's biggest commercial successes. Sometimes criticized for being overly sentimental and directing with a heavy hand, Howard nonetheless topped the box office on several occasions with films like "Splash" (1984), "Cocoon" (1985) and "Parenthood" (1989). By the time he directed the critically acclaimed and award-winning "Apollo 13" (1995), "A Beautiful Mind" (2001) and "The Da Vinci Code" (2006), Howard was in the upper echelon of directors working in Hollywood and his producing partnership with Brian Grazer one of the most successful in Hollywood. Even his critically maligned blockbusters like "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas" (2000) managed to turn a healthy profit. When he produced one the most beloved and acclaimed TV comedy series of all time, "Arrested Development" (Fox, 2003-06), he also conquered that medium, making Howard one of the most consistently successful filmmakers and TV producers of his generation.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
2.
  Rush (2013)
4.
5.
6.
  Frost/Nixon (2008)
8.
  Cinderella Man (2005) Director
9.
  Missing, The (2003) Director
10.
  A Beautiful Mind (2001) Director

CAST: (feature film)

1.
4.
 Hancock (2008)
5.
 Tell Them Who You Are (2004) Cast
6.
 Osmosis Jones (2001) Voice Of Tom Colonic--Mayor'S Opponent
7.
 Independent, The (2000) Himself
8.
 Frank Capra's American Dream (1997) Narration
9.
10.
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1956:
Made stage acting debut at 18 months with parents in "The Seven Year Itch"; father Rance Howard directed production
1956:
Appeared as a baby in "Frontier Woman," which featured his father
1958:
TV acting debut, "Police Station"
1959:
First feature acting role, at age four in "The Journey"
1959:
TV series debut, playing various characters on CBS sitcom "The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis"
1960:
Portrayed Opie Taylor, the son of Sheriff Andy Taylor on "The Andy Griffith Show" (CBS)
1962:
Landed featured role in big screen adaptation of "The Music Man"
1963:
Played Eddie in feature "The Courtship of Eddie's Father"
1965:
Last film role for five years, "Village of the Giants"
1970:
Resumed movie acting career in "Smoke"
1971:
Made feature debut as director and co-writer at age 23 with "Grand Theft Auto"; also starred
1971:
Played Bob Smith on ABC series "The Smith Family"; also starred Henry Fonda and Janet Blair
1973:
Starred in George Lucas' groundbreaking teen film "American Graffiti"
1974:
Cast as Richie Cunningham on long-running ABC sitcom, "Happy Days"; was a regular on the series for six years; left to pursue career as a filmmaker but returned for occasional appearances
1974:
Delivered dramatic role in acclaimed TV production "The Migrants" (CBS)
1975:
Played title role in ABC adaptation of "Huckleberry Finn"; also featured parents and brother in supporting parts
1976:
Co-starred with John Wayne in elegiac Western "The Shootist"
1978:
Made TV directing and screenwriting debut with NBC movie "Cotton Candy," co-written with brother Clint
1979:
Reprised role in less successful sequel "More American Graffiti"
1980:
TV producing debut, "Ron Howard's 'Skyward,'" about a paraplegic teen who yearns to pilot her own plane with Bette Davis in featured role; also directed
1980:
Cast as a man who honors his brother's wishes by committing a mercy killing and then is tried for murder in NBC movie "Act of Love"
1980:
Feature debut as executive producer, "Leo and Loree"
1982:
Helmed breakthrough feature, "Night Shift"; first collaborations with producer Brian Grazer, writers Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel, and actor Michael Keaton; "Happy Days" co-star Henry Winkler also starred
1984:
Directed hit romantic comedy "Splash," starring Tom Hanks and Daryl Hannah, and scripted by Mandel and Ganz
1985:
Founded Imagine Films Entertainment with Brian Grazer
1986:
Took Imagine Films public
1986:
Reprised signature childhood role of Opie Taylor in NBC reunion movie "Return to Mayberry," executive produced by Andy Griffith
1987:
First Imagine production, "Like Father Like Son"
1987:
Was executive producer on short-lived CBS sitcom "Take Five"
1988:
Had box office misfire with fantasy "Willow"
1988:
Executive produced TV sequel "Splash Too" (ABC)
1989:
Enjoyed hit with genial comedy "Parenthood"
1990:
Returned to TV as executive producer of short-lived NBC sitcom "Parenthood"
1991:
Helmed action thriller "Backdraft," starring Robert De Niro, Kurt Russell, and Donald Sutherland
1992:
Announced he and Grazer were leaving Imagine for joint venture at Universal Pictures
1992:
Teamed with Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman on box office disappointment "Far and Away"
1993:
Bought out Imagine (with Grazer), making the company private again
1994:
Helmed "The Paper," featuring an all-star cast including Michael Keaton, Glenn Close, Robert Duvall, and Marisa Tomei
1995:
Directed fact-based drama about an aborted NASA mission to the moon "Apollo 13"; starred Tom Hanks, Ed Harris, and Gary Sinise
1996:
Helmed "Ransom," a remake of 1956 film about a child kidnapping, starring Mel Gibson and Rene Russo
1997:
Was executive producer of ABC sitcom "Hiller & Diller"
1998:
Served as one of the producers of Emmy-winning HBO series "From the Earth to the Moon"; Tom Hanks was driving force behind project, serving as executive producer, director, screenwriter, and co-star
1998:
With partner Brian Grazer, was executive producer of ABC sitcom "Sports Night"
1998:
With Grazer, executive produced highly touted drama series "Felicity" (The WB)
1999:
Directed feature comedy "EDtv," starring Matthew McConaughey
1999:
With Grazer and Eddie Murphy, served as executive producer of animated series "The PJs" (Fox, 1999-2000; The WB, 2000-01)
2000:
Helmed live action version of "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas," starring Jim Carrey in title role
2001:
Provided character voice of animated figure Tom Colonic in mixed media feature "Osmosis Jones"
2001:
Directed Russell Crowe in "A Beautiful Mind," a fictionalized biopic of Nobel Prize winner who overcame schizophrenia John Forbes Nash; received Golden Globe for Best Director and BAFTA nomination for Best Film
2002:
With Grazer, was producer of comedy feature "Stealing Harvard"
2003:
Directed psychological thriller "The Missing," starring Cate Blanchett as a frontier woman who teams up with her estranged father, played by Tommy Lee Jones, to rescue her abducted daughter
2003:
With partner Brian Grazer, was executive producer of Fox sitcom "Arrested Development"; also narrated series
2005:
Re-teamed with Russell Crowe as director of "Cinderella Man," a true story of Depression-era fighter and folk hero Jim Braddock
2006:
Directed Tom Hanks as symbologist Robert Langdon in film adaptation of Dan Brown's best-selling novel "The Da Vinci Code"
2008:
Directed and produced feature adaption of Peter Morgan's play "Frost/Nixon," starring Michael Sheen and Frank Langella in title roles
2008:
Nominated for the 2008 Golden Globe Award for Best Director ¿ Motion Picture ("Frost/Nixon")
2008:
Nominated for the 2008 Directors Guild of America Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film ("Frost/Nixon")
2009:
Nominated for the 2008 Academy Award for Best Achievement in Directing ("Frost/Nixon")
2009:
Re-teamed with Hanks for "Angels & Demons," the film adaptation of Dan Brown's novel and sequel to "The Da Vinci Code"
2010:
Executive produced updated version of 1989 film "Parenthood" for NBC
2011:
Co-produced biographical drama "J. Edgar," directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Leonardo DiCaprio
2011:
Helmed "The Dilemma," starring Vince Vaughn, Kevin James, and Winona Ryder
2013:
Inducted into The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences' Hall of Fame
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Burroughs High School: Burbank , California -
University of Southern California: Los Angeles , California -

Notes

Not to be confused with British actor Ronald Howard, the son of actor-director Leslie Howard.

Three of Howard's four children are named for the places they were conceived: Bryce Dallas in Dallas; Paige Carlyle and Jocelyn Carlyle at the Hotel Carlyle in New York City. --From Premiere, April 1991.

"I've always believed that I'd do my best work from age 50 to 65. I told that to my brother Clint about 20 years ago. He looked at me and said, 'That means you're in store for a lot of sh---y movies.'" --Howard quoted in Entertainment Weekly, April 1, 1994.

"I've always been involved in sort of pop entertainment. You live with a little bit of frustration that that kind of work is not taken as seriously as other kinds of work. I mean, there's great feedback, but yeah, sure, I was sort of legitimately categorized and types as the all-American guy." --Howard to Bernard Weinraub in The New York Times, November 12, 1996.

"Part of my code of life became defined by not fulfilling those cliches for people, which later included not being thrown in jail or being written up as a child actor on the rocks. I consciously wanted to avoid those cliches." --Howard quoted in the Daily News, March 21, 1999.

"Well, I would love every review to be glowing and I would like to win every award I can win. But I think I'm treated pretty fairly. I think there are certain people who don't like my stuff. And you just have to understand that." --Howard quoted in Newsday, March 24, 1999.

"For a long time, people thought of me as a TV actor dabbling in directing. Then they thought of me as a director who only did comedy ... Then I started making dramas, and people raised their eyebrows." --Howard quoted in New York Post, March 25, 1999.

"I learned to write in order to sign autographs at 5. People were asking me for my autograph on the first season of 'Andy Griffith' and my dad said, 'I guess you'll have to learn to sign your name. Printing won't work.'" --Ron Howard quoted by Stephen Schaefer in Boston Herald, March 26, 1999.

"One reason that I became a director was because I felt sort of suffocated at one point in my late teens -- "Happy Days" was a number one show at the time, and it was a teenage show to boot, so there was a real pop side to the fan base and the way they would react. That was about as intense as that can be -- being uncomfortable to go out Christmas shopping or to Disneyland or to the movies. I was getting ready to have an adult life." --Howard to Premiere, April 1999.

"Brian [Grazer]'s a much better producer than I am. ... Good producers need to roll their sleeves up in a way that I can be kind of timid about. The director in me doesn't want to step on another director's toes, but directors' toes need to a little stomping from time to time. Even mine. I depend on Brian for that with me." --Ron Howard quoted in Premiere, April 1999.

"My objective is to reach the point where no script written in this town has my name crossed off as a potential director." --Ron Howard quoted by Peter Bart in GQ, May 1999.

"As a director, this film was definitely the biggest challenge I've ever faced. "Apollo 13" was daunting. "Backdraft" was tricky, and I also learned a lot on "Willow", but "The Grinch" had a visual trick in almost every shot. Still, I don't like to be too blatant with those tricks, and I don't like the photography and the stylistic choices to overtake and overpower the characters. ..." --Ron Howard on directing "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas" quoted in American Cinematographer, November 2000.

"For a long time I was trying to display unexpected range. That was much more of an issue. But in the last four or five years, I kind of worked in all the genres I expect I ever will work in. There was a certain turning point." --Ron Howard to New York, December 17, 2001.

"Of course I'm vain, but in my day-to-day living in the East, I'm not encountering people in the business unless I specifically come to work. And I think there's something very liberating about that, being constantly reminded that even if what you're doing is important to you, it's not the be-all and end-all. When you're in L.A., it's the be-all and end-all." --Howard on living on the East Coast to New York, December 17, 2001.

"Everybody wants their films to be appreciated and respected at every level," he says. "Of course, I hope 'A Beautiful Mind' is accepted in that way. I wish I'd been nominated and won for 'Apollo 13.' I'd be lying if I didn't say that. But I don't know what factors go into what is an impossible choice to begin with. It's never [comparing] apples to apples anyway--God knows what colors those choices." --Howard on the Oscars, quoted in the Los Angeles Times, Janaury 4, 2002.

"Joh Huston directed until he dropped. That's what I wan to do." --Howard quoted in Premiere, February 2002

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Cheryl Alley. Writer. Married on June 7, 1975; has appeared in most of her husband's films in non-speaking roles.

Family close complete family listing

mother:
Jean Howard. Actor. Died on September 2, 2000 at age 73.
father:
Rance Howard. Actor. Has appeared in most of Howard's films.
brother:
Clint Howard. Actor. Born in April 1959; has appeared in most of his brother's films; best known as the child lead of TV's "Gentle Ben" (CBS, 1967-69).
daughter:
Bryce Dallas Howard. Born c. 1981.
daughter:
Jocelyn Carlyle Howard. Twin; born c. 1985.
daughter:
Paige Carlyle Howard. Twin; born c. 1985.
son:
Reed Howard. Born c. 1987.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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