But, of course, Ron isn’t the only actor in his family. His mother Jean, for instance, racked up credits on more than 30 different TV shows – among them Married… with Children, Grace Under Fire and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Her movie career only began in the mid ’70s, however – almost two decades after her son had made his big-screen debut in Frontier Woman.
Frontier Woman is also the film that gave Ron’s father Rance his first major screen acting role. Born in 1928, the head of the Howard dynasty began performing with a children’s touring theater company before sharing the stage with Henry Fonda in a production of Mr. Roberts. He also appeared alongside Ron in The Andy Griffith Show and youngest son Clint in Gentle Ben.
And the patriarch proved to have an enduring movie career, too, with more than 100 big-screen credits to his name. Some of those parts, moreover, are in films that his son directed. Rance cameoed as a minister in Apollo 13, for example, and also portrays Cardinal Beck in Angels and Demons. However, Rance wasn’t apparently averse to appearing in movies with Clint, either. Appropriately, the elder man plays his son’s on-screen father in dramedy Apple Seed, due for release in 2018.