Latest Obama Advocates: Opie, Andy Griffith, Fonz

As the election nears, Ron Howard is getting desperate.

In a video posted Thursday on Funnyordie.com, the actor-turned-director reprises his role on "The Andy Griffith Show" as a way to rally support for Barack Obama.

While speaking into the camera, Howard has his beard shaved, dons a youthful red wig and puts on the kind of outfit he would have only worn as Opie Taylor in the `60s.

"I've never done this before and I hope never to do it again, but I guess you could say I'm feeling pretty desperate these days," explains Howard. "So as a demonstration of my sincerity, this is for you America."

Then, in black-and-white, Howard sits down in the woods to talk to "Pa": Andy Griffith. Griffith advises Howard-as-Opie that he'll be able to vote someday, so long as he eludes the butterfly ballot.

That's not the only old TV show revisited by Howard, who years ago traded child stardom for directing movies like "A Beautiful Mind" and this fall's "Frost/Nixon."

Another wardrobe change prepares him to step back into "Happy Days," the beloved show that ran from 1974-1984 in which Howard played Richie Cunningham.

Standing in front of a vintage car and clad in a leather jacket is Henry Winkler, once again with the unmistakable coif — and greaser demeanor — of the Fonze. Winkler, still having some trouble with his pronunciation, tells Howard this election is everyone's chance to right a wr-wr-wrong.

Stepping back out of character, Howard says he, Griffith and Winkler returned to their television roots to urge support for Obama and "really think through this important election."

The video is the latest clip from FunnyOrDie.com, which has made news this election season by putting Hollywood celebrities in funny political videos. The site, which was co-founded by Will Ferrell and Adam McKay, has produced popular videos featuring Paris Hilton in a mock campaign ad and Gina Gershon as Sarah Palin.

Because the videos are produced quickly — McKay and company can dispatch a small crew in just hours — the site can create timely videos related to the news. In another video posted this week, Natalie Portman and Rashida Jones suggest their solution to the economic crisis: "Puppies!"

The video came together when Howard called Judd Apatow, the director and producer who has frequently collaborated with FunnyOrDie. Apatow referred him to McKay, who wrote a draft of the script with Howard's input. Jake Szymanski, who directed the Hilton video, shot it.

"We were all in TV heaven," McKay said in an e-mailed statement. "I mean, it's the Fonz and Andy Griffith. Those were my second Fathers."


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  • by C on Oct 28, 2008 at 06:23 PM
    Should our government have gotten us involved in Vietnam ? Perhaps not. Did our nation's politicians of the era hamstring our troops with meaningless rules that the VC and NVA did'nt have to follow? Yes. Could we have won the war ? Yes, if the politicians had allowed it. Were our military folks spit upon and reviled by the ungrateful progenitors of today's liberal movement ? The same people that partook of the very freedoms our military safegaurds? The ones that had the gall to yell ''Baby Killer'' at returning troops but did'nt have the guts to fight ? YES. To all of our brave vets, past, present and future, THANK YOU. Please know that all TRUE Americans love you and are forever grateful to you and your families. It's because of you that America IS great and free. To all of you spineless, whimpering, anti-America protestors, you are ALL more than welcome to leave this great nation anytime you please. All you've given us is liberalism, and, like you, it's something WE DON'T NEED !!
  • by Anonymous on Oct 28, 2008 at 03:53 PM
    My husband and two of my brothers lost their lives in Viet Nam so don't even take me there. There is a lot you will never understand. All due respect to you, I still pay a hell of a price for the after math of that war that took place so long ago.
  • by Master Sgt Ret. USMC Location: Noth Carolina on Oct 28, 2008 at 03:13 PM
    HI Ace. Yes you are right it was not a Declared War by Congress. I would like you to tell that to the Mothers and Fathers who lost there brave sons there. Remember these names Lance Corporal Nahan, Lance Corporal Wolpe, Corporal Gopp, Hm3 McGrath US NAVY. In the A-Shaw Valley 3 Aug 1967 Thau Thien Providence Viet Nam. We were on Recon Patrol We ran into a Company of Viet Cong. The fire fight lasted about 5 hours. We called in Marine Air Strikes. The VC retreated. The 3 Marines and the 1 Navy were never found they went MIA. Most likly were Captured and executed by the VC. They are now listed as dead. There names are on the wall in Washington DC. I think about them every day of my life. How much did they suffer before the VC killed them. Please everybody have some respect for us. It was not a popular war, but we fought hard for God , Country, The Marines and for each other Please Print this WINT. Thank You all and God Bless America.
  • by ACE on Oct 28, 2008 at 01:06 PM
    It is a fact that the Viet Nam was never technically a war.
  • by jason on Oct 28, 2008 at 01:03 PM
    officially the war never ended because the U S never pulled all troops out. The war had been declared over but US' occupation never did. There were stiil US forces in the middle east after the persian gulf war was over. Say it ain't so
  • by Niecee Location: Washington County on Oct 28, 2008 at 12:58 PM
    Will you all just stop with the McCain/Obama drama and just cast your vote for whomever you plan to vote for and let the numbers tell the story. The only thing you are doing on here is making a mockery out of yourselves and the whole election. All I can say is may the best candidates win!
  • by Windy on Oct 28, 2008 at 12:50 PM
    Abraham Lincoln, Civil War. He did not fire the first shot, but he denied the South had a right to secede. Freed the slaves. Sorry, Democrats. Of course, back then, the Republican party stood for about the opposite of what they have stood for since the '90s when it comes to race.
  • by Voter Location: US on Oct 28, 2008 at 12:26 PM
    Thanks for the violin concert. But, I think a piano background would be more appropriate for a comedy routine. ;-)
  • by djm Location: California on Oct 28, 2008 at 12:22 PM
    Please re-read my comment. I stated that the Persian Gulf War began with Bush, Sr in the White House (1990). It also ended, officially, with Bush, Sr in the White House, in 1991. I remember it well ... my son was there.
  • by Obama 08 4 Prez! on Oct 28, 2008 at 11:37 AM
    LOL@Lavon....you have the all the guy's screaming your name...like you are their lover! I'm almost jealous, you're getting all my fan mail. Did you like Voter's story? I was in the back playing the violin.......
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