Film and television actor Rance Howard, the father of actor and director, Ron Howard, and actor, Clint Howard, has died at the age of 89.
As his son, Ron, confirmed in a statement on social media:
Clint & I have been blessed to be Rance Howard’s sons. Today he passed at 89. He stood especially tall 4 his ability to balance ambition w/great personal integrity. A depression-era farm boy, his passion for acting changed the course of our family history. We love & miss U Dad
At this time, specific details, including the cause of death, are unclear. In addition to his two sons, he is also survived by his granddaughters, Bryce Dallas Howard and Paige Howard.
Rance & Ron made their film debuts together
Born in Oklahoma, in 1928, Rance got his start as an actor in 1940’s New York as part of a touring company. Making acting a family affair, Rance and his older son, Ron, made their film debuts together at the same time with the 1956 western film, Frontier Woman. Around this time, he also started to make his debut on television, as well.
Rance was heavily involved with his sons’ work
Rance also notably appeared in different faculties on the shows his sons worked on, including The Andy Griffith Show, in which his son Ron played Opie, and Gentle Ben, which starred his son, Clint; Rance also served as a writer on the latter show. Even well into the 2010’s, Rance often appeared in many of the films directed by his son, Ron, such as 2005’s Cinderella Man or 2009’s Angels & Demons.
He was still a hard-working actor in his own right
At the time of his death, Rance has appeared in over 100 films. According to CNN, he also appeared in six movies that were nominated for the best-picture Oscar, The Music Man, Chinatown, Apollo 13, A Beautiful Mind, Frost/Nixon and Nebraska.