Ron Howard’s Inside Info on Christian Bale’s On-Set Meltdown

February 5, 2009
Photo: The Howard Stern Show

Ron Howard called in to thank Howard for recommending “Frost/Nixon,” so Howard laughed that at first, he thought it was a stupid idea for a movie – it took a screening to change his mind. Ron said he had the same reaction before seeing it on stage. Howard also congratulated Ron for not following 90% of the other child stars in becoming just another trainwreck, but Ron confessed that he may have had some help: “Thank god there wasn’t TMZ [back then].”

Ron noted that he spent so much time directing and producing – his next project is “Angels & Demons,” a Tom Hanks vehicle – that he had little time for hobbies or home time. Howard and Robin wondered how he started his busy career, so Ron explained how infamous B-movie director Roger Corman wanted him to act in a film, and instead of agreeing to the original terms, he negotiated a deal to act in exchange for the privilege to direct “Grand Theft Auto.”

On Christian Bale’s Meltdown

Howard asked Ron what he’d heard about Christian Bale’s on-set meltdown (Ron’s daughter, Bryce Dallas Howard, was acting opposite Christian at the time of the incident), so Ron explained that it was not Christian’s nature to blow up: “But it’s intense on a set.” Ron said the whole crew got back to work on the film the next day, and according to Bryce, the finished product is “fantastic.”