Ron Howard mistook his daughter for another redheaded actor, just like fans did to him when he was a child star

Ron Howard: Bill Mumy :: Bryce Dallas Howard: Jessica Chastain?

AP Photo

Back when Ron Howard was beginning his acting career, there was another redheaded boy whose star was also rapidly rising, Bill Mumy. The Andy Griffith Show and Lost in Space stars both featured in episodes of The Twilight Zone and classic TV Westerns, leading to confusion for many fans who had a hard time telling the difference between these freckled, flame-haired new child stars.

Sixties child stars Bill Mumy and Ron Howard

Fast-forward to today, and Howard has a kid of his own who's all grown up and a movie star herself, knockout redhead Bryce Dallas Howard. Bryce is likely best known as the star of the Jurassic World movies across from Chris Pratt, and it was actually the promotion for her first dinosaur blockbuster that first put Bryce on the radar of another actress who pretty much everyone agrees strongly resembles Ron's daughter, Jessica Chastain (Dark Phoenix).

Before Chastain landed roles in Zero Dark Thirty and The Tree of Life, she told People that she did a double-take coming across a photo of Bryce Dallas Howard, at first puzzled to see herself before realizing she was making a mistake many fans would make in the coming years. In fact, so many people have confused Bryce and Chastain that those numbers even include Bryce's father Ron, who surely knows a thing or two about what it feels like to have audiences mixing you up with someone else.

The story is a moment you have to imagine might make Ron's daughter sigh, "Aw, pa!" Chastain said she was in an Apple store when she passed Ron Howard and a friend overheard him say, "I think I just saw Bryce." Chastain said it was just for a moment and a very understandable mistake to make, "We look so much alike!” Chastain recalled. “I mean, it was brief. I literally walked by and he was like, ‘I think I saw Bryce.’"

Eventually, when Chastain met Ron's daughter, their impulse was to take a long look in a mirror side by side:

"The first time we met, we went to the table read and looked at each other, because we both get it all the time, and we grabbed each other’s hands and said, ‘Let’s go to the mirror,’ And we went to the mirror and looked at our faces and went, ‘Yeah, we look exactly alike.’ There are little things about us that are different, but we definitely look like kin. Which I see it as a compliment, I think she’s fabulous.”

It kind of makes you wonder if a similar moment ever took place in the Sixties if Ronny and Billy's paths ever crossed? 

Think you can tell the difference between Ron Howard and Bill Mumy, no problem? Put it to the test!

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MaryMitch 58 months ago
I get Jessica Chastain and Bryce Dallas Howard confused, but I don't understand how anyone could mistake Opie for Will Robinson!
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