‘The Andy Griffith Show’ Icon Ron Howard and Brother Clint Used Writing to Overcome Father’s Death

by Megan Molseed
(Photo by gotpap/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)

We have all heard the stories. Stories of fame gone wrong as young Hollywood stars find challenges in the business. Some get into big trouble with a variety of issues such as substance abuse, connecting with the wrong crowd, or too even much partying. Some make it out on the other side, while others are not so lucky. This certainly isn’t true for The Andy Griffith Show child star Ron Howard, and his brother Clint Howard who also spent time acting in the series.

Both Howard boys found amazing success in Hollywood both as children and beyond. And, they escaped the fate many of their fellow child stars have found.

This, the brothers say, is due to the hard work of their late father, Rance Howard.

According to Clint Howard, his relationship with his father reflected the love Rance clearly had for his sons. It is a relationship the former Andy Griffith Show actor says that had a hand in the bestselling book, The Boys: A Memoir of Family and Hollywood which the actor recently released with his brother.

Clint Howard Finds An Outlet For His Grief

Clint says that much of the bestselling memoirs’ origins came from him finding an outlet for the grief he felt after losing his father in 2017.

“After Dad died, we were orphans,” Clint Howard tells Fatherly in a recent interview.

“I don’t do dying parents very well,” the Andy Griffith Show player explains.

Clint Howard also adds that he felt a sense of numbness after he lost his father. And, the actor says, finding the outlet through writing was what helped him sort through the feelings he wasn’t quite sure how to feel yet.

“I mean, I didn’t, I didn’t freak out or anything,” Clint says of the devastating loss. “But I just, I went numb. I don’t believe I really grieved properly.”

“And when that was happening, boy it felt good to see my big brother,” he adds. “[writing the book] with Ron felt like a good way to honor our parents.”

‘The Andy Griffith Show’ Star Sees His Book As A Theraputic Experience

Clint’s older brother, actor Ron Howard, agrees with how helpful it was to use the creation of their book as an outlet for their grief.

For the Howard brothers, creating the book was a very therapeutic experience. Well, that and a deadline the famous writer, director, and producer adds.

“I would never finish the project if I didn’t have a deadline and the impetus of engaging with Clint,” Ron Howard explains.

“It’s a unique memoir because it’s the story of our parents [Rance and Jean Howard] but we also thought it could entertain and engage people very broadly,” Howard adds. “If you care about nostalgia, we have that to share.”