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Ron Howard finds why apprehension over ‘Ecstatic Days’ persona Fonzie led to hair loss: ‘I kept all the pieces interior’

Ron Howard used to be so scared about Henry Winkler’s “The Fonz” eclipsing his persona Richie Cunningham all the scheme throughout the early hunch of “Ecstatic Days” that he developed a pores and skin condition and began losing his hair — as ABC toyed with renaming the conceal “Fonzie’s Ecstatic Days.”

“The largest stressor of all used to be Fonzie. No longer Henry [Winkler], but Fonzie. It did no longer damage out my explore that as the season went on, the Fonz used to be getting more and more conceal conceal time,” Howard, 67, writes in “The Boys: A Memoir of Hollywood and Family,” in which he and his brother, actor Clint Howard, reminisce about their careers.

“I didn’t address my stress in particular smartly,” he writes. “I doubtlessly would rating benefited from seeing a psychotherapist … As a replacement, I kept all the pieces interior. Then I started breaking out in eczema rashes all the absolute top scheme through my body, most acutely on my eyelids … And my hair started thinning. Taking a scrutinize on the males on both sides of my family, I knew it used to be inevitable … But it started popping out in alarming clumps all the scheme through this time.”

Ron Howard and Henry Winkler starred in ‘Ecstatic Days’ from 1974 till 1984.
(Photo by ABC Photo Archives/Disney Accepted Leisure Command through Getty Photos)

All of it labored out. Series creator Garry Marshall suggested Ron he wouldn’t change the conceal’s title if he “didn’t toughen it” (he didn’t) and “Ecstatic Days” enjoyed a fruitful hunch from 1974 to 1984, spawning two classic spinoffs (“Mork & Mindy” and “Laverne & Shirley”) and one turkey (“Joanie Loves Chachi”), while bonding Howard and Winkler as lifelong chums. (They reunited for the 1982 mountainous-conceal conceal comedy “Night Shift,” which Ron directed.)


“The Boys” unfolds in a breezy first-person myth as Ron and Clint, 62, take rising up with their folk, actors Rance and Jean Howard, and the brothers’ entrees into Hollywood at very early ages. The bulk of the memoir encompasses their tv careers.

Ron used to be most effective 6 years faded when he rose to popularity as Opie Taylor on high-ranked sitcom “The Andy Griffith Demonstrate,” which chronicled existence in folksy Mayberry, N.C., and ran from 1960-68.

From left is Ron Howard (as Jerry) and Clint Howard (as Trace Wedlow) on the gap of the CBS conceal ‘Gorgeous Ben.’
(Photo by CBS through Getty Photos)

Co-megastar Andy Griffith used to be in “right disaster” as his marriage to his first wife Barbara used to be “unraveling,” he writes.

“He got right here back from Christmas damage one season with his hand all taped up. He used to be blunt about what took space: ‘I purchased below the influence of alcohol, I purchased mad, and I set aside my fist through a door.'”


As for Jim Nabors: “Jim, while private about his private existence, used to be no longer closeted. He didn’t pretend to this level females or divulge he wasn’t homosexual … The crew, sadly, used to be no longer as enlightened. Listening to their on-space chatter, I heard a note I didn’t know: homo. That’s what they known as Jim within the back of his back, and no longer with any hint of kindness.”

Ron Howard and his brother Clint Howard rating teamed as a lot as write a memoir.
(William Morrow)

The memoir furthermore parts short forays steady into just among the brothers’ early movies — but stops immediate of Ron talking in any ingredient about his successful directorial occupation (at the side of “Willow,” “Parenthood,” “Apollo 13,” “Frost/Nixon” and “Hillbilly Elegy”).

He does, even supposing, write about how, on the gap of the 1973 George Lucas comedy “American Graffiti,” when he used to be 18, his 25-year-faded co-megastar, Cindy Williams (later to megastar with Penny Marshall on “Laverne & Shirley”), schooled him within the art work of smooching.

“She sensed, as it is going to be, that her eighteen-year-faded acting accomplice used to be inexperienced at kissing scenes and a bundle of nerves about performing them,” he writes. ” ‘We are able to’t kiss for the fundamental time on camera,’ she stated. ‘We better note.’ With the professionalism of Hollywood’s intimacy coordinators … Cindy taught me easy guidelines on how to provide out convincingly for the camera with out overstepping. She used to be no longer drawn to me romantically, nor I in her. Cindy performed this provider out of generosity, saving me from embarrassment … “


Director Ron Howard and actor Clint Howard this day.
(Photo by Slaven Vlasic/FilmMagic/Getty Photos)

Ron furthermore describes, in cringeworthy ingredient, how he suggested his mother about his teenage urges.

“I was worn to Dad’s forthrightness and imperviousness to so-known as taboos. So I thought it used to be perfectly sufficient to bid Mother of my nocturnal emissions and my more awake bedroom actions, and to inquire of her if this used to be all customary, and, if that’s the case, if I was going about it the honest skill … Mother literally set aside her palms to her ears, anxious to be set aside on this space. Speaking in a booming ‘La-la-la, I will be able to’t hear you!’ instruct to drown out any further disgusting revelations that I’d rating been sharing, she stated, ” ‘You’re going to must back till your dad will get home to discuss that. Ask him, no longer me!’ “

He did. And right here’s what Rance suggested him: “Some folk call it j–king off. But masturbation is the specific time length. It’s all very customary. It’s no longer soiled. Don’t fear about it.”

From left: Ron Howard, Marion Ross and Henry Winkler all the scheme through 56th Annual ACE Eddie Awards – Arrivals at Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, California, United States. 
(Photo by Michael Tran/FilmMagic/Getty Photos)

Clint’s largest revelation about his time on “Gorgeous Ben” (1967-69) concerns his ursine co-megastar, Bruno: “Basically one of the top detrimental … used to be that he smelled. He furthermore took prodigious dumps due to his equally prodigious weight loss program.”


Clint furthermore candidly remembers his heavy pot smoking, inviting and descent into heavier drug affirm. “I attempted to salvage sober as soon as or twice, the fundamental in 1984,” he writes, noting he marks his first day of sobriety as June 14, 1991.

“I opened up the Yellow Pages and stumbled on a itemizing for Beverly Glen Successfully being facility, which offered a twenty-eight-day in-patient program for treating drug and alcohol dependency … Mother and Dad did their most effective to help me … I wanted just a few tries sooner than restoration took.

“Ron, bless him, consistently solid me in his movies all the absolute top scheme through my the affirm of years.”

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