‘The Andy Griffith Show’: Ron Howard Would Participate in Script Meetings Even as a Young Child

by Keeli Parkey

When one of the most beloved actors from “The Andy Griffith Show” passed away in 2006, two of his costars appeared on CNN to share their memories of the show.

It was Don Knotts who passed away in 2006. He was 81 years old at the time of his death. His portrayal as Deputy Barney Fife on the popular sitcom remains a fan favorite more than a decade after his death. Following his death, Andy Griffith and Ron Howard were interviewed by Larry King.

In addition to talking about the hilarious Don Knotts, Griffith and Howard shared some behind-the-scenes details of “The Andy Griffith Show.”

“We had very good writers. But, all of us worked on the script. Don and I did too. And, uh, we enjoyed working on those scripts a lot,” Griffith said.

Griffith was then asked by Larry King if Ron Howard was allowed to be involved in developing scripts for “The Andy Griffith Show.”

Turns out, the young actor was given that opportunity. And, wisely, he took advantage of it. He also offered his youngster’s perspective on the show’s scripts.

“Little Ronnie was in there every single week,” Griffith said with pride. “We read the script every Thursday. And, Ronnie said one day, ‘I don’t think a little boy – a kid – would say it that way.”

While Griffith was talking about “Little Ronnie” the show went to a split-screen of him and Howard. And, Howard had a very big smile on his face as his television father talked about his work as a young actor.

According to Griffith, the writers listened to the future Hollywood director’s advice. They wanted to know what Ron Howard thought his character would say in the scene.

“And, (Ron) said it, and we said, ‘fine,'” Griffith said.

Ron Howard Said He Recalled Helping Out with Scripts of ‘The Andy Griffith Show’

Even though he was just a youngster at the time, Ron Howard said he recalled the incident Andy Griffith had shared.

“Well, I remember that moment that Andy’s talking about,” Howard said. “I remember that. And, I said, I think it was in the second season, and had been asking, making suggestions through the whole first season and nobody ever took any of them, you know.”

When his suggestion was accepted, it came as a surprise to Howard.

“So, I was standing there a little dumbfounded,” Howard said. “I remember Andy saying, ‘What are you staring at Ronnie?’ And I said, ‘Well, that’s the first suggestion of mine that you’ve taken.’ And he said, ‘It was the first one that was any d*** good. Now, let’s rehearse the scene.'”

Unsurprisingly, this story resulted in a good laugh from Griffith.

You can watch Andy Griffith and Ron Hoard talk about “The Andy Griffith Show” with Larry King below. They start talking about how Howard helped out on the show’s scripts around the 45-second mark of the clp.