How Ron Howard’s Father Rance Was Chosen In Episodes Of The Classic Comedy
One of the lesser known backstage players of The Andy Griffith Show was the father of young Ronny Howard, Rance.
Even though he was on the set of this show as a stage father, he was an established actor. Not only did Rance change the tone of comedy in a positive way; he also starred in more than a few episodes himself.
Rance Howard Was The Ultimate Stage Father – In The Best Way
At the beginning of The Andy Griffith Show in 1960 Ron was only 6 years old and could not read yet.
In an interview with the Television Academy Foundation, the Cinderella man director explained that his father “taught me my lines. I couldn’t read.
Rance was an actor, was going to “teach me dialogue. What he did well was teach me a good, solid foundation of acting. My father taught me to play.
While Rance and his wife Jean can surely see their son’s talent, they didn’t push him to act and they certainly made him realize that he didn’t have to sign. Griffith Show.
âMy parents always said, ‘You don’t have to do this.’ They would sit me down every now and then and say, âIf you don’t want to star on the show, you really don’t have to. You don’t do it for us. I remember a pretty mature dialogue about it, âhe said.
Ron Howard’s dad explained how he got picked for the ‘Griffith Show’
In a conversation with the YouTube channel “Two Chairs, No Waiting” (a pun on Floyd the Barber’s Shop), Rance explained in more detail his years with his son on the classic comedy set.
âI was just an independent actor,â Rance said. “[Show creator Sheldon Leonard] said when he assembled The Andy Griffith Show, ‘Rance you’re a good actor, I want to use you; I can’t use you as a regular on the show, but there will be guest roles that you could play roles in on the show. I said, ‘Well, it’s okay.’ I wasn’t trying to close a deal for myself. I was mainly interested in Ron having a good show and thought The Andy Griffith Show was a good show.
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The father of two, who died at 89 in 2017, has taken his role on the show seriously. He was there to mentor Ron as a young actor and that’s what he did. He recalled the show that propelled Ron into the Griffith Show: The Danny Thomas Show. The latter program served as a vehicle for The Andy Griffith Showthe pilot episode of.
âI was also interested in being available myself to help Ron,â he said. “When he did The Danny Thomas Show, he was 5 years old. When he started to do The Andy Griffith Show, he had just turned 6 years old. He couldn’t read, so I was sort of his dialogue coach. I taught him his lines. I wanted to be available to kind of continue on this trail. Sheldon was friendly with it. This is kind of how I got involved in [the show]. “
Rance appeared and wrote an episode for ‘The Andy Griffith Show’
Rance’s appearances on Andy Griffith Show episodes include “Cousin Virgil”, “A Black Day for Mayberry”, “Barney and the Governor” and “The Rumor”.
The actor also wrote “The Ball Game,” an episode of the series’ seventh season. During a 2013 appearance with Larry King, Ron said the episode was one of his favorites. It was âbased on real life. My dad wrote the story for it. In the episode, Andy rejects Opie’s softball game. But he calls Opie at the base.
âIt had happened to me and my dad,â Howard said with a laugh. âHe called me at home during a baseball game that was on my birthday. But I couldn’t believe he called me!
âMy dad found it hilarious that I was so upset about it. He took the idea from Andy [Griffith] and they made it into an episode.