Ron Howard wasn't worried about being typecasted as Opie Taylor

Howard wasn't worried about his "Opie" image.

CBS Television Distribution

It seems like every former child actor spent the better part of their adult career attempting to shed off the role that made them famous as an adolescent. A double-edged sword, being recognized as a child actor means that your career can begin early, but there's also the potential to be saddled with a role you no longer identify with.

Ron Howard portrayed sweet little Opie Taylor for about eight years during the original run of The Andy Griffith Show, and while Opie is a pretty unforgettable character, we mainly know Howard from his talent as a director, not as a child star.

Speaking to the Charlotte Observer, an adult Howard explained that he wasn't worried about trying to escape Opie, for the simple reason that the character was allowed to grow up during his time on the show.

"It's very easy to get stereotyped by a series," Howard said. "I was in an ideal situation because I could outgrow Opie."

In fact, the real role that Howard felt he may have had some trouble escaping was his Happy Days character, which he played as a young adult. "I'm going to have a hard time now outgrowing Richie," he said in the 1978 interview.

Luckily, while Howard was able to shed any lingering Opie-ness on the series, he was also able to begin training for his new role behind the camera while still acting on The Andy Griffith Show, even if he didn't know it yet.

"I really enjoyed the people, the directors we had," Howard said. "It was just an incredible experience for a kid and a great way to learn the business with people like Andy."

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8 Comments

GENEVON120 15 days ago
Please REMOVE Carol Burnet's annoying ad that has her imitation of Tarzan.
Runeshaper 15 days ago
Howard was great in both roles. I can see him being concerned about being typecast, but he managed to go above and beyond.
AgingDisgracefully 15 days ago
Though he was in terror of being typecast as Richie Cunningham.
I know I'd be.
FrankensteinLover 15 days ago
What a Career hes had and will continue to have.
CaptainDunsel 15 days ago
"Ron Howard wasn't worried about being typecasted as Opie Taylor"

Hey MeTV Staff, it AIN'T "typecasted"! It's "typecast".
Actually the past tense of typecast is typecast and typecasted. Either one.
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