A young Ron Howard came up with a ''Flintstones'' episode while on a car ride with his father

As if Howard wasn't already successful enough.

Ron Howard has been blessed with many gifts. As an actor, director, and writer, it seems like everything this man touches turns to gold. If that doesn't make you jealous, think about the fact that Howard's performance career began in his adolescence, meaning his success had pretty much been lifelong. Granted, Howard has had his issues and shortcomings like anyone, but it's still an incredibly impressive track record.

With that being said, please add The Flintstones to Howard's resume, because according to Ron and Clint Howard's book, The Boys: A Memoir of Hollywood and Family, Ron actually dreamed up an episode plot that was actually used by the show's production team.

In addition to acting as Ron's guardian on set, Rance Howard also acted as chauffeur, driving the young actor to and from Desilu Studios to shoot for The Andy Griffith Show. But when he wasn't taking care of his kids, Rance also had a few irons in the television fire. In addition to being an actor, Rance also worked as a screenwriter. Typically, he worked on potential spec scripts but had some luck when The Flintstones accepted a few of his scripts as well. In fact, so talented was Rance Howard that he was invited to pitch a few ideas to Joe Barbera, co-creator of the series.

While Rance Howard may have had insight into the writing process through his work, Ron Howard had insight as a child and avid Flintstones fan. Howard wrote, "I knew The Flintstones backward and forward, and as Dad talked through a couple of his notions for new episodes, I was suddenly struck with one of my own: What is Fred convinced Wilma to let him get the used car that he coveted, but when he does, he finds out that there is something that's been hidden in the car by gangsters, thereby putting Fred in danger?"

Rance told his son that he'd bring the pitch to Barbera, and to both of their excitement, the idea was accepted and put into development. The episode became The Flintstone's episode, "Fred's Second Car." 

Ron Howard often credited his father for instilling a love for screenwriting in him at a young age. He wrote, "My exposure to Dad's writing ambitions and achievements meant as much to me as his acting guidance. 

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12 Comments

CaptainDunsel 1 month ago
From such a early efforts have come some great things for his career.
The closest I ever got to this was having a story concept included in the "bible" for the "so brief it almost didn't exist" Andy Griffith series "Adams of Eagle Lake". (Similarly to what happened for Ron Howard, it helps if your father is the story editor. [lopsided grin])
Runeshaper 1 month ago
That must have been so exciting! Thanks for sharing, MeTV! (-:
Rick 1 month ago
"Howard's performance career began in his adolescence"

Really, MeTV? You, *MeTV*, can't think of *any* Ron Howard performances that might have occurred *before* his adolescence?

Hint: It's not M*A*S*H. It's the other show you show all the time.
justjeff Rick 1 month ago
Good catch! They also overlooked his film work, like in "The Trouble with Harry"...
MrsPhilHarris justjeff 1 month ago
Wasn’t that Jerry Mathers?
justjeff MrsPhilHarris 1 month ago
You're right... I guess I just did a "MeTV" and posted without thinking. Good work in correcting me... Mea culpa!...

What I *should* has posted was that little Ron played the part of Winthrop in "The Music Man"...
Rick justjeff 1 month ago
I'd like to see the episode of the anthology show "General Electric Theater," where he was a boy with a fairy godfather. It was based on the comic strip Barnaby, which was fantastic. https://metv.com/stories/before-he-became-opie-ronny-howard-played-a-popular-comic-strip-character
justjeff Rick 1 month ago
It looks like MeTV even forgot their own article abour Ron's pre-Opie work...
MrsPhilHarris justjeff 1 month ago
Yes he did. Great little actor. He was in a couple of movies with Shirley Jones.
Yellhair 1 month ago
I knew Opies Dad Rance was in the business as I’d seen him in movies. So now there is a third generation with Rons daughter, thank goodness she’s got the good looks.
WGH 1 month ago
Little Opie Cunningham did well.
Andybandit 1 month ago
That is so cool. RH coming up with an episode of the Flintstones. That is so creative. No wonder why he became a successful writer and producer.
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