Ron Howard made a surprising cameo in the penultimate Season 1 episode of This Is Us, and he is not ruling out a return to the hit NBC drama. TV Guide recently caught up with Howard, who is currently heading the NatGeo drama series Genius, and the famed movie director said he would love to make another appearance on This Is Us, even if dramatic acting isn’t his forte.
Howard, who shot to fame as a child star in the 1960s on the Andy Griffith Show and later on the long-running ABC sitcom Happy Days, told TV Guide he is close friends with This Is Us creator Dan Fogelman, which is how his original cameo on the NBC hit came to be. Now, Ron reveals that his family members are all fans of This Is Us, so says he would welcome a return to the show, although he admitted he isn’t a fan of playing himself in dramatic roles. Ron also made it clear that he has not yet received a call from Fogelman about a return to This Is Us.
Still, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Ron Howard on This Is Us Season 2, considering his offer to cast one of the show’s central characters, Pearson sibling Kevin (Justin Hartley), in a big Hollywood film was apparently taken up.
In case you need a refresher, in the This is Us episode “What Now?,” Ron Howard placed a late night call to Kevin after he caught the struggling actor’s off-Broadway play and offered him a role in his next movie. The final scenes of the This Is Us finale, “Moonshadow,” showed Kevin hopping in a cab on his way back to Hollywood, leaving his newly rekindled relationship with his ex-wife Sophie (Alexandra Breckenridge) hanging in the balance.
In an interview with Hollywood Life, This Is Us star Justin Hartley said his character has changed and would do “whatever he has to do” to get his childhood sweetheart back.
“He’s a different person, so he’s going to do everything he can to get what he wants, which is this wonderful, lovely woman back,” Hartley said of Kevin. But one call from Ron Howard, and Kevin is out the door.
These days, Ron Howard is best known for directing films such as Inferno, In the Heart of the Seas, A Beautiful Mind, and Apollo 13, and he has left acting pretty much in the past. In fact, Ron once told U.K. Express that, despite his success, he was never really comfortable as an actor.
“I listened and learned – and knew that I would never survive as an actor,” Howard said in 2015.
“I was not assertive. I was not a leader…I was relaxed but never terribly satisfied with my work. I was always a little uncomfortable watching myself and felt I was not capable of doing it differently from the way I was delivering each particular part.”
While he’s not big on acting anymore, Howard has kept himself busy in the TV genre with shows like Genius and the children’s cartoon series Curious George. Ron was also an executive producer and narrator on the Fox sitcom Arrested Development and last year he guest starred season on The Odd Couple reboot.
Ron Howard has been one of many high-profile guest stars who’ve appeared on This Is Us. In addition to Ron, the first season of the show featured an A-list lineup that included cameos by Seth Meyers, Katie Couric, Mario Lopez, and the late Alan Thicke in one of last credited TV roles. This Is Us Season 1 also featured recurring roles for Gerald McRaney (Dr. K.) and Denis O’Hare (Jesse), and appearances by Brad Garrett (Everybody Loves Raymond), Katey Sagal (Married With Children), Jami Getz (The Neighbors), Elizabeth Perkins (Weeds), Marla Gibbs (The Jeffersons), Susan Blakely (Rich Man, Poor Man), Jimmi Simpson (Westworld), and Wynn Everett (Agent Carter).
Take a look at the video below for more on This Is Us Season 2, and stay tuned to find out if Ron Howard will reprise his role as…Ron Howard.
[Featured Image by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for National Geographic]