Ron Howard of The Andy Griffith Show, was so young when he filmed the show that producers had to fake this scene with him to get it right.
The Andy Griffith Show is a classic comedy series that featured Andy Griffith as a widowed Sheriff trying to raise his son while also helping the good citizens of the fictional town of Mayberry. Directing legend, Ron Howard, who is known today for his films including The Da Vinci Code, Hillbilly Elegy, and A Beautiful Mind, played Griifth’s young son on the show. The show ran for almost eight seasons, and Howard started filming when he was only 6-years-old.
Because he was so young, Howard struggled with a few of the show’s trickier scenes, including the famous title sequence. During the open sequence, Griffith and Howard walk along the side of a river carrying fishing poles. Howard stops to pick up a stone and toss it in the water. The clip only lasts a few seconds. However, producers had to employ some film-making magic to pull off the scene.
Reportedly, Howard struggled to throw the rock far enough to make it into the water. After several attempts, the show’s assistant director, Bruce Bilson, stepped in. He planted a prop man behind a bush. When Howard threw the rock, Bilson signaled the prop man to toss a rock into the water. Although at first glance, the scene looks seamless, if you look carefully you’ll notice a delay in the sequence from when Howard throws the rock and when it actually hits the water.
‘The Andy Griffith Show’ Recently Celebrated 60 Years
In October, The Andy Griffith Show celebrated its 60 year anniversary. In honor of the show, TV Land hosted a five-night marathon airing famous episodes of the show. The channel featured interviews with the cast talking about behind-the-scenes secrets. Howard even reveals how his father used the death of their family pet to inspire one of his emotional scenes.
Even decades after it first aired, fans still consider the show a timeless classic that helps them escape to a simpler time.