Clinton Engle Howard is an actor, producer, writer, and director from America. He has garnered fame for portraying Mark Wedloe in the CBS series ‘Gentle Ben’, Paco in the sports comedy ‘The Waterboy’, and Sy Liebergot in the space docudrama ‘Apollo 13’. A California native, Howard was raised alongside his older brother Ron by their actor parents. Both siblings were exposed to the entertainment industry since they were children. Howard made his acting debut when he was two years old, in a season two episode of ‘The Andy Griffith Show’. He appeared in his first film a year later, in the comedy-drama ‘The Courtship of Eddie's Father’. In the ensuing years, he has established himself as a prominent character actor. Over the course of his five-decade-long career, he has accumulated over 240 film and TV credits. In 1998, Howard received the MTV Movie Award for Lifetime Achievement.
Childhood & Early Life
Born on April 20, 1959, in Burbank, California, USA, Clint Howard is the youngest of two children of actors Rance Howard and Jean Speegle Howard. Ron, who was born on March 1, 1954, is about five years older than him.
Howard is of German, English, Irish, Scottish, and Dutch descent. His father’s original surname is Beckenholdt. However, by 1948, he had taken Howard as his professional name. Clint studied at R.L. Stevenson Elementary.
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At the age of two, Clint Howard started his acting career in the episode ‘The Jinx’ of season two of the CBS sitcom ‘The Andy Griffith Show’, in which his brother was portraying Opie Taylor at the time. His big screen debut came about a year later, playing an uncredited role in Vincente Minnelli’s directorial venture ‘The Courtship of Eddie's Father’.
Between 1964 and 1965, he appeared in 26 episodes of another CBS sitcom, ‘The Baileys of Balboa’. In 1966, he lent his voice to Roo in the animated featurette ‘Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree’.
In Disney’s 1967 adaptation of Rudyard Kipling's 1894 collection of stories ‘The Jungle Book’, he voiced Hathi Jr. He reprised the role of Roo in the 1968 animated short ‘Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day’ and the 1977 animated feature ‘The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh’.
Howard played Ace in his brother’s feature film directorial debut ‘Grand Theft Auto’ (1977). Ron regularly casts Howard and their parents in his projects.
The siblings have also collaborated in films like ‘Splash’ (1984), ‘Backdraft’ (1991), ‘Far and Away’ (1992), ‘Apollo 13’ (1995), ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’ (2000), ‘Cinderella Man’ (2005), ‘Frost/Nixon’ (2008), and ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ (2018).
Howard has portrayed various memorable guest roles in a number of television shows. He also appeared in several Star Trek episodes, and as a result, has found a permanent place in the Star Trek culture.
He worked with future Star Trek director J. J. Abrams in his Fox science fiction drama series ‘Fringe’, portraying a character who believes himself to be the son of Sarek of Vulcan in a season one (2008) episode.
In recent years, he has played the recurring characters Creepy Rodney in two episodes of the NBC sitcom ‘My Name Is Earl’ (2006-08), Johnny Bark in two episodes of the Fox (later Netflix) sitcom ‘Arrested Development’ (2003-13), and Crazy Dave in the CMT Sitcom ‘Still the King’.
On the big screen, he has worked with Adam Sandler in ‘The Waterboy’ (1998) and ‘Little Nicky’ (2000). He portrayed Radar Operator Johnson Peters Ritter in all three Austin Powers films. He is set to star in the upcoming comedy film ‘Deported’, horror film ‘3 from Hell’, and action film ‘Crimson Saints’.
As a director, he made his debut with the miniseries ‘The Clint Howard Variety Show’ (2002). In 1978, he wrote the screenplay for the telefilm ‘Cotton Candy’. Howard co-produced the 2005 fantasy film ‘Planet Ibsen’.
In the early 1980s, he used to be part of a new wave rock and roll group called The Kempsters.
As a child actor, Clint Howard essayed the role of Mark Wedloe in the 1967 film ‘Gentle Giant’ and the subsequent CBS series ‘Gentle Ben’ (1967-69).
Family & Personal Life
Clint Howard has been married twice. Little to no information is available on the identity of his first wife. It is also not known when they got married and when they divorced.
His second wife is Melanie Sorich, with whom he exchanged wedding vows on October 29, 1995. In 2017, it was revealed that Howard had gone to court seeking a divorce. The case is still pending.
Howard used to be an avid golfer but he had to quit the sport after his hip-replacement surgery. When he is not acting, he makes snow globes. Through Ron, he is the brother-in-law of actress Cheryl Howard and uncle of actresses Bryce Dallas Howard and Paige Howard.
Unlike Ron, who is a liberal Democrat, Howard is a conservative Republican. Three days prior to the Iowa Caucuses, on January 29, 2016, he voiced his support for the US Senator Ted Cruz of Texas for the Republican presidential nomination.