‘Happy Days’ Star Ron Howard Congratulates DGA Directorial Achievement Nominees

by Allison Hambrick

Ron Howard, Hollywood icon and star of “Happy Days,” congratulated all nominees for the DGA Award for first time directors.

“Bravo to all!” he tweeted alongside the announcement of nominees, before singling out Lin-Manuel Miranda.

The latter is nominated for his directorial debut, Tick, Tick… Boom! starring Andrew Garfield. It was produced by Howard and his longtime creative partner Brian Grazer. The film follows the real story of Jonathan Larson, a struggling playwright who tragically passes away after writing one of the most successful broadway shows of all time: Rent. Sadly, Larson never got to experience the success of the show. The film has been singled out as a possible Oscar contender.

The official announcement from the Director’s Guild of America read: “Exciting News! The DGA Award nominees for Outstanding Directorial Achievement of a First-Time Feature Film Director are Maggie Gyllenhaal, Rebecca Hall, Tatiana Huezo, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Michael Sarnoski and Emma Seligman! We’re so proud to shine a light on these first-time filmmakers and celebrate their achievements in storytelling this past year.”

The Happy Days star is a director in his own right. He made his directorial debut in 1977 with the film Grand Theft Auto. He since went on to direct a number of notable films. These include Splash, Cocoon, and Willow. He received critical acclaim in 1995 with Apollo 13, starring Tom Hanks, Kevin Bacon, Bill Paxton, Ed Harris, and Gary Sinise. While directed many films, the 2001 film A Beautiful Mind snagged him his first and only Best Director Oscar.

Happy Days Icon Reflects on Life in Hollywood

Ron Howard’s successes in Hollywood stem back to his childhood. His father, Rance, was both an actor and a writer, and his brother Clint acted as well. Howard started on the path of acting by running lines with them before going on to star in The Andy Griffith Show. After that show ended, his win streak continued with Happy Days.

“It’s kind of an interesting way to grow up,” Howard said of his childhood acting resume. “It’s all we ever knew. I started doing scenes with my dad when I was like 2 ½… I used to sit around and watch [my dad’s] rehearsals. And I started picking up dialogue… I learned lines, and then we learned other scenes, and we did it for fun.”

As a result, Howard grew to love the industry. He then made the move into writing, directing, and producing, becoming one of few people to have separate stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for film and television.

“And so when I started doing it, when I was like 4, it was just a matter of doing it with other people,” Howard continued. “And I got a big kick out of it. I liked it.”