In a 2015 interview, Happy Days star Henry Winkler passionately explained his overwhelming need to stay optimistic at all times.
Winkler opened up in an interview on the BBC’s HARDtalk program. Of course, he spent time going over his big break as Arthur “Fonzie” Fonzarelli from his time on Happy Days. His cool guy greaser role as “The Fonz” became one of the most beloved characters in American television history. For 11 seasons between 1974 and 1984, Winkler starred on the classic sitcom and became a household name.
During his chat with the British news source, he talked about his lengthy career and how his early days shaped his outlook on life. In addition, he revealed details about his lifelong struggles with dyslexia, which went undiagnosed well into adulthood.
However, in spite of his troubled childhood, Winkler is an eternal optimist. Any time you see him in interviews or in public appearances, the actor is the definition of cheery and delightful. The Happy Days actor shared more about his positive mindset.
“You know how I see my life?” Henry Winkler said. “You know that toy that has sand in the bottom, you punch it, it goes down and then it comes right back to center, right? You blow it up – plastic. That’s how I see myself. I go down, I get back up, and here I am sitting in this chair.”
‘Happy Days’ Star Henry Winkler Opens Up About How His ‘Heart Races’ at Every Read-Through
While speaking in the same BBC interview, the Happy Days star admitted he still struggles with read-throughs because of dyslexia. In the 2015 interview, Winkler went into detail about his undiagnosed dyslexia and how he’s managed to cope with it over the years.
During his early life, the actor had trouble with reading and spelling, but never knew why. At 31 years old though, he finally gained some clarity when he received his dyslexia diagnosis. Although he’s known about it now for decades, the learning disability still plagues him to this very day.
The BBC interviewer asked the Happy Days actor directly how he manages read-throughs and auditions. Winkler revealed that he’s learned to get over the embarrassment that accompanies his dyslexia and simply live with it and press forward.
“I was embarrassed. Read-through, just to let everybody know, Monday morning we would read through the script for the writers and the producers. They could hear it. It would be the beginning of the rehearsal to make the show that Friday.”
“And you’re struggling to read,” the interviewer chimes in.
“Struggled. Struggle to this day,” Winkler responds.
“So how did you get away with it?” the interviewer asked the Happy Days actor.
“I didn’t,” Winkler responded. “I stumbled, and I was embarrassed. And I learned to live with my embarrassment. I finally said, ‘You know what? This is me, this is how I get through it.’ And my heart races at every read-through ’til this day.”