Even as a child on ”The Andy Griffith Show,” Ron Howard had aspirations of becoming a director

With two parents involved in the entertainment business, it seemed that Ron Howard was destined to forge his own path in acting. But it seemed that no one anticipated his meteoric rise as a director, except, perhaps, Howard himself.

In an interview with United Press International, a still-adolescent Howard described his time on The Andy Griffith Show. At the time, the series had been on the air for about five years, and already Howard had become a fan favorite. During the interview, Howard was pressed on his hopes for the future. He confessed, “I think I’m going to keep on acting. I really like it.”

He also said, “I want to go to college, but I don’t know where it will be yet.” However, he added, “Someday I’d like to become a director too.”

Clearly, becoming a director was a dream that Howard had long held onto, even during his childhood. According to another interview with the Sacramento Bee much later in 1977, Howard remembered these lofty ambitions. He said, “I guess I’ve thought about directing since I was 8 or 9 years old.”

However, when offered an opportunity to direct an episode of Happy Days, a show that the teenage Howard starred in, he actually refused. Among his other reasons, he cited, “I had little to gain. Richard Thomas had directed shows on The Waltons and it didn’t help him as a director.” Howard reasoned, “Even if your work is good, nobody notices much. And if your directing is not so good, it can hurt you when you try to do features.”

In fact, Howard’s beginnings as a director were much more organic than one might suspect. He stated, “I started fooling around with a super-8 camera when I was 15, making movies with my brother Clint and his friends.”

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