Ron Howard moved out of LA after someone gave a script to his preschooler
There are a lot of ways to network, but maybe don't pitch your script to a director's four-year-old.
There's a reason a lot of stars move out to California when they start seriously working in the industry. It's just easier to balance the daily grind when your house is a quick commute away from the studio. Stars do live elsewhere, of course, but that often includes long stretches of time away from their families and homes, frequent flights, and a lot of careful scheduling to balance different time zones.
Ron Howard was born in Oklahoma, but was brought up in California from a young age. After he landed a series regular role as Opie Taylor on The Andy Griffith Show at just age six, it seemed like he was destined to remain there. After all, he went from acting to directing to creating his own production company! What better place to do that than Hollywood?
However, in 1985, Ron Howard picked up his family and moved them out to Greenwich, Connecticut. According to his daughter, Bryce Dallas Howard, the move was spurred by an incident when she was a kid herself.
“Apparently, one day someone — when I was at preschool — they gave me a script to bring home to my dad," she said. "I think assuming that maybe then my dad would read it and somehow turn around and be like, ‘Yes! This is the movie I’m doing.'"
The effect was the total opposite. Ron Howard was horrified. "I think my parents realized that being raised in Los Angeles, so much of the culture of this city is centered around the entertainment industry. And they sort of didn’t want to raise us in an environment that felt that singular."
Bryce, who was only a few years old when they moved, said that their parents wanted them to grow up outside of the fame bubble. "My mom was really strict, and she was strict for good reason. My parents weren’t going to give us their money... They don’t believe in that. So they knew that when we were 18 we were going to need to take care of ourselves."
Ron Howard, for his part, has no regrets about how he raised his kids, even if it made his professional life harder. "I’m really proud of them and of who they are, the way they live," he said. "They’re very principled, they’re creative, they’re engaged, they’re good problem solvers."