Magazine article Variety

Ron Howard Is on Time's Side

Magazine article Variety

Ron Howard Is on Time's Side

Article excerpt

Curiosity has been anything butakffler for that ageless cat, ton Howard, who has let his thirst for understanding guide the projects he directs.

But only on rare occasions has that curiosity propelled him into the docu world. Serving as an exec producerand cBrector on National Geographic Channel's "Breakthrough" series provided an Irresistible opportunity for an exception.

"It's exciting to see what I can apply of my past experience and my sensibilities - more than I expected - but also what I am learning," he says.

When he had to settle on one subject for the single episode he would direct he chose to explore how science Is tackling the question of aging.

"It's such a universal subject, very inescapably human, and I feit like people young and old consider It and are affected by it," he says.

A linchpin of a plot point spoke to the dramatist in him: an attempt by leading scientists to persuade the Food and Drug Administration to classify aging as a specific area of research for which treatment drugs could be approved.

"I wasn't necessarily expecting that," he says. "I was surprised at the complexity and the emotional and intellectual endurance required of the health and science community to decide to tackle these things. …

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