Here's How Much Ron Howard Is Really Worth

Since the age of five, when he scored a leading role as Opie on the "Andy Griffith Show," Ron Howard has been a constant in Hollywood. The "Happy Days" star is now known for his successful career as an Oscar-winning director and producer. Howard owes at least part of that success to his professionalism, which, according to his co-stars, was evident from a young age. "We did about 200 episodes [of "Happy Days"] together," Henry Winkler told The Washington Post, "and during that time he forgot one line. He never missed a mark, was never late, never angry."

Now that he's no longer a self-conscious teen — or playing one on TV, anyway — Howard is a major name behind the scenes. Case-in-point: his production company, Imagine Entertainment, is valued at $600 million to $800 million as of 2022 (via The Wall Street Journal).

If his company is so lucrative, what does that say about Howard's bank account and how he spends his money? We break it all down below, but be warned that Howard's spending habits might not be what you think. As far as anyone can tell, despite his massive net worth, he is a super down-to-earth guy.

Ron Howard has a high net worth

Let's get right into it: Ron Howard is doing pretty dang well. Thanks to his lucrative acting accomplishments, which he was able to turn into an even more prolific career as a director and producer, Howard is sitting comfortably atop a multimillion-dollar empire. He can credit the bulk of that to his work in the entertainment industry, as well as some clever real estate investments.

So, exactly how much is he worth? As of 2022, Howard has an estimated net worth of $200 million, per Celebrity Net Worth. That's definitely an impressive number, but it could increase, as Ron Howard and his brother Clint Howard released a book, "The Boys: A Memoir of Hollywood and Family," in October 2021 (via HarperCollins). The book was well-reviewed, with actor Tom Hanks calling it "extraordinary" and noting that it would "surprise every reader with its humanity." If readers love it as much as Howard's creative collaborators do, then he might enjoy some rewarding sales numbers.

He's been working since he was young

If you want to build up a $200 million net worth, you'd better get to work. Director Ron Howard owes that approximate number, in large part, to beginning his career at such a young age. From decades of experience directing and producing, Howard has amassed considerable wealth, but even as a child actor, he was doing more than alright. 

"In '66 when Koufax and Drysdale were holding out for $100,000, I remember reading that — it was headlines in the sports page every day — and sat down and figured out what my salary was going to be for the 34 shows we were going to do that year," he told The Washington Post in 1985. "And it came to $105,000. When it occurred to me that at 12 I was making the same money that Koufax was, that was the first time that I put in perspective what the money was."

How did he stay so grounded? Howard credits that to his mother and father, who were also actors. "I looked to my parents. I saw how they chose to live and how happy they were," he wrote in his 2021 book, "The Boys" (via USA Today). "I redoubled my efforts to keep on working, to stay in show business beyond my boyhood," he continued. "Not just because the money was good, but because I recognized how much I truly [loved] acting and learning about directing."

Ron Howard wanted to change his career

When Ron Howard first appeared on "The Andy Griffith Show" at the age of five, he had already gotten a strong start in the industry. After working on the classic Mayberry sitcom and then starring in "Happy Days," Howard was ready for something new. Rather than try another industry, he took a shot at directing. The star turned out to be just as much of a natural behind the camera as in front of it. The films he's directed and produced have earned him a reputation as one of the best (and most successful) names in Hollywood.

As he revealed in an interview with The Washington Post, Howard was always interested in directing. Between scenes on set, he would ask directors about their choice of lens and request to attend script read-throughs. "If I didn't have to go back to school, I'd get to hang around with the rest of the cast while they would pitch story revisions, talk about strengthening characters, things like that," he said. "I have lots of memories of actually speaking up and having grown-ups accept my ideas."

Howard launched his directing career with a variety of projects but is known for breaking in with "Grand Theft Auto" in 1977.  Along with recognizable theatrical features, he helmed TV movies and low-budget films in his early directorial years. The star's 1985 feature "Cocoon" won two Oscars, and the film grossed more than $76 million in the U.S. box office.

He went into the production business

Like many actors-turned-producers, Ron Howard and business partner Brian Grazer helm their own production company, Imagine Entertainment. Since its founding in 1985, Imagine's value has soared. Industry outlets have speculated that Howard and Grazer were planning to sell. In 2021, Variety suggested that the company could be worth as much as $825 million, and The Wall Street Journal noted in 2022 that Imagine was under negotiation to sell a majority stake to Centricus, a London investment firm. Raine Group already owns shares.

Raine Group made their $100 million investment in 2016, which, according to Variety, enabled Imagine to significantly expand its coverage, breaking into documentaries and international films. "Instead of narrowing our focus to service a particular need of a particular company, which felt creatively limiting, we took a risk and moved toward vastly more independence," Howard told the The New York Times in 2019. "It's us recognizing that this particular era in media represents an incredible opportunity."

Despite being around for nearly four decades, in many ways, it seems like Imagine is just getting started.

Ron Howard invests in property

It should come as little surprise that someone with as much money as Ron Howard has invested in some pretty swanky properties. His first major purchase was a ranch-style home in the suburbs of L.A. that he snapped up during his "Happy Days" era, per the Los Angeles Times. He reportedly paid a little over $500,000 for it but sold the home for nearly a $300,000 profit in 1986.

Aside from the L.A. pad, Howard's biggest investment to date has been in a multi-million dollar compound on the Connecticut-New York border. Howard and his wife Cheryl purchased the 6-bedroom property in 1991 as a place to raise their kids away from the glitz and glamour of Hollywood. The property included a yoga room, tennis court, indoor pool, 2-story library, 14-seat movie theater, and a professional-grade observatory, per Business Insider.

Howard and Cheryl parted with the property in 2014 for a cool $27.5 million. The couple relocated to another (presumably smaller) property in Connecticut while keeping a penthouse in New York City, of course. However, in 2017 they put the city pad on the market for $12.5 million, per Variety.

His company, Imagine Entertainment, has been sued

Ron Howard has been a major player in the industry long enough that he's had his fair share of legal trouble. In 1996, Howard landed in hot water when his production company Imagine Entertainment was sued (and lost!) for copyright infringement regarding their film "Backdraft." The company lost by default as they refused to provide the court with any documentation related to the suit, per SF Gate. Imagine appealed the ruling but ultimately lost in 2001 (along with MCA and Universal) and was ordered to pay John Zoll and Terrence Burns an undisclosed amount of money as retribution for reportedly stealing parts of their unproduced script, per Buffalo News.

Howard found himself in the center of a similar lawsuit a few years later when he was sued for supposedly refusing to compensate Sudanese refugees for collaborating with Imagine and other producers for a film, "The Good Lie," about their experiences, per The Hollywood Reporter. The movie was a long time coming and apparently took nearly a decade from concept to screen. The men who volunteered their stories (54 in total) immediately recognized the contents and filed suit as soon as they did. Safe to say, being accused of refusing to adequately compensate refugees was not a good look for Imagine Entertainment.

The star is not a big spender

Ron Howard is a very wealthy man, but surprisingly, he reportedly isn't a big spender. Okay, his former $27.5 million Connecticut compound isn't exactly thrifty, but other than property investments, Howard seems to live a pretty low-maintenance life. If you don't believe us, wait till you hear how he celebrated the 50th anniversary of his first date with his wife. The traditional gift for such an occasion is gold, but if you think Ron Howard got his wife, Cheryl Howard, some nice gold jewelry, think again.

Ron gifted Cheryl a mug with his face on it and bought himself a pair of socks covered in photos of her. "We went to see a re-release of Stanley Kramer's It's a Mad Mad Mad World and then got some pizza at now-defunct Barnone's in Toluca Lake. Quite a start, right?" he wrote on Instagram about their first date. "Today we are celebrating with these kind of socks we ordered ... and a trip to our local take-out pizza place. We'll be driving in the same '70 VW Bug I picked Cheryl up in 5 decades ago. It runs great. So do we." First of all, that's adorable; second, if driving the same car for 50 years isn't thrifty, we don't know what is. That same year, they celebrated their 46th wedding anniversary in a classically understated way. Ron Howard opted for something simple, a nice Instagram post and some celebratory balloons for Cheryl.

Ron Howard has failed a time or two

With success comes failure, and Ron Howard is no stranger to box office flops. He may have produced and directed his fair share of Oscar winners, but for every high, there's been a low. To date, one of his biggest flops is "Solo: A Star Wars Story."

"Solo" premiered in 2018 and severely underperformed in the box office, earning roughly $393 million worldwide — significantly less than previous "Star Wars" films had earned, per The Guardian. For his part, Howard blamed the failure on trolling from fans. "It was pretty interesting," Howard said during an interview with the "Happy Sad Confused" podcast. He added, "It was especially noticeable prior to the release of the movie. In several of the algorithms, whether it's Metacritic or Rotten Tomatoes, there was an inordinate push down on the 'Want to see' [score on Rotten Tomatoes] and on the fan voting."

Unfortunately, that's not even his most stinging loss of the past decade. In 2016, Howard released "Inferno" to little fanfare and extensive criticism. The New York Times declared it his "fourth domestic flop in a row." Since then, Howard has continued to struggle, notably with the 2020 release of "Hillbilly Elegy," which was widely panned by critics despite an all-star cast. The good news is, Howard's production company, Imagine Entertainment, has branched out into other genres like documentary, family, and live productions, so he's certainly not out of the game.

The Howard kids are making their own way

He might be rich, but Ron Howard has made a concerted effort to raise his kids as normally as possible. He and his wife Cheryl opted to bring up their children outside of Hollywood, presumably so they'd be a little more chill than your average Tinseltown legacy. Of the four kids, the most famous is Bryce Dallas Howard, an actor who has starred in "Jurassic World" and "The Help." She is just as thrifty and down to earth as her dad, apparently, as she landed in the press for doing her own makeup before presenting at the 2021 Golden Globes. The star wrote on Instagram that she glammed up with some virtual direction.

As for Ron Howard's other kids, his youngest and only son Reed is forging his own way as a professional golfer. Howard's other daughters, twins Paige and Jocelyn, are pretty low-key. Paige attended Tisch School of the Arts at NYU and has dabbled in acting, per Parade. Jocelyn, on the other hand, has opted to stay out of the limelight altogether. She appears to have no interest in show business and isn't even on Instagram!