Happy Days was of course an iconic American TV series which is still being replayed all over the world today, and Fonzie and diner owner Al spawned famous catchphrases that are still commonly used today too.
Shows such as Friends and The Simpsons continually make references to the show and both Ron Howard and Henry Winkler have “guest voiced” on The Simpsons, which when you consider the show ended 25 years ago, gives an insight into the impact the show had and continues to have.
So let’s take a look at what some of the old cast members are up to now…
Ritchie Cunningham – Ron Howard appeared in the show as Ritchie from 1974 to 1980 although he did return for intermittent guest appearances after he ‘officially’ left.
Ron went on to be an award-winning actor and an Academy Award-winning director and producer and since he retired from acting, Ron’s directed several successful films including How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Apollo 13, A Beautiful Mind and most recently, he’s worked on Frost/Nixon, The Da Vinci Code, and its upcoming prequel, Angels and Demons.
Arthur “Fonzie” Fonzarelli – Playing the Fonz was undoubtedly Henry Winkler’s most famous role. When the series began, Fonzie had only a minor role but by the end of it, he was the character most commonly associated with the show.
His trademark catchphrase “Aaayyyy!” and the famous thumbs-up was and still is imitated. Henry has won numerous awards as an actor, director, producer, and author.
Since 2003, he’s collaborated with author Lin Oliver on a series of children’s books about a young boy, Hank Zipzer, who’s dyslexic which Henry suffers from himself. He’s often said this was caused him a lot of unhappiness in his childhood. He and Oliver have published 15 books about Zipzer who Henry affectionately dubbed “the world’s greatest underachiever”.
In October 2008, Henry appeared in a video on funnyordie.com with Ron Howard in which the pair reprised their roles as Fonzie and Richie to encourage people to vote for Barack Obama. The video was entitled ‘Ron Howard’s Call to Action’ and also featured Andy Griffith.
Prior to that, Henry appeared in his first pantomime at the New Wimbledon Theatre in London in 2006 playing Captain Hook in Peter Pan. He actually replaced David Hasselhoff who pulled out when he was offered a TV job by Simon Cowell. He played the same part in Woking, England for Christmas panto in 2007. For the 2008-2009 season, Henry played Captain Hook at the Milton Keynes Theatre and most recently, he played the role of Judge Newman in Merry Christmas, Drake & Josh.
Howard Cunningham – Tom Bosley is most definitely best known as Howard Cunningham – Richie and Joanie Cunningham’s dad – but he’s also well known for his role as Sheriff Amos Tupper on Murder, She Wrote. Since Happy Days ended, Tom’s also portrayed Father Frank Dowling in the show, Father Dowling Mysteries.
Tom is an Emmy-nominated and Tony Award winning actor and has often been cast in ‘voice’ roles due to his singularly ‘resonant’ voice. One of those voice roles was as Harry Boyle in the animation Wait Till Your Father Gets Home. Eemember that one? I used to love that!
And despite being nearly 83, one of Tom’s recent roles was in an emotive and heartbreaking documentary entitled Paper Clips which was about his own experiences during the Holocaust. Last year, Tom also starred in the movie Charlie & Me.
Marion Cunningham – Marion Ross played Mrs. Cunningham who was affectionately known as Mrs C most of the time.
Her TV career includes roles in many other classic TV shows such as The Brady Bunch and the Love Boat. She’s also done voice work as Grandma SquarePants on the animated series SpongeBob SquarePants. Marion’s two adult children also work in TV and movies; her son Jim Meskimen worked with Ron Howard on How the Grinch Stole Christmas, and her daughter Ellen Plummer was a writer/producer on Friends.
Marion recently starred in Brothers & Sisters and in June last year was given the honour of having the Albert Lea Civic Theater in Minnesota change its name to the Marion Ross Performing Arts Cente.
Joanie Cunningham – Erin Marie Moran played Joanie until 1983 after briefly leaving the main show to star in the spin-off Joanie Loves Chachi alongside Scott Baio. Erin has since had several other television roles including appearances on Love Boat, Murder She Wrote, and Diagnosis Murder.
In 2008, she was a contestant on VH1’s version of Celebrity Fit Club but she only lost 3lbs after refusing to follow the diet and exercise regime. Erin later admitted to having done the show “for the money”
Chachi Arcola – Scott Baio was 16 when he was cast as The Fonz’s cousin, Chachi Arcola on Happy Days. He also starred in the made-for-television drama specials The Boy Who Drank Too Much with Lance Kerwin and Senior Trip with Mickey Rooney.
In 1982, Scott of course starred in Joanie Loves Chachi with Erin Moran, which lasted just one season. He’s recently appeared in his own VH1 reality series entitled Scott Baio Is 45…and Single followed by Scott Baio Is 46…and Pregnant in which the cameras followed as Scott and his wife Renee had their first baby, a girl.
He’s also starred in the movie called Finish Line playing a terrorist who smuggles a substance called Red Mercury into and out of the country and can currently be seen as the co-host of the VH1 reality show Confessions of a Teen Idol in which “former teen idols attempt to resurrect their careers”
Al Delvecchio – Al Molinaro played the owner of ‘Arnold’s’ on the show and in Joanie Loves Chachi. He went on to star as Murray the Cop on The Odd Couple as well as starring in TV ads for On-Cor frozen dinners.
In 1987, Molinaro and fellow Happy Days cast member Anson Williams – who played Potsie – opened a chain of restaurants called Big Al’s. Al didn’t appear in the 2005 Happy Days Reunion which aired on ABC and at the grand old age of 89, he’s retired from acting.
Warren “Potsie” Weber – was played by Anson Williams in the show, and just as an interesting little aside, Anson is the second cousin of Dr. Henry Heimlich, known for creating the Heimlich Manoeuvre for treating choking victims.
Anyway, since the show ended, he’s guest starred as himself in an episode of Boy Meets World and also guest starred on Sabrina – which he was also directing at the time – reprising the role of Potsie in a fantasy sequence.
And as mentioned above, he now co-owns a string of diners with Al Delvecchio.
Ralph Malph – Don Most played this character on the show until 1980 and has since had many film and TV roles including EDtv and Planting Melvin. He also made guest appearances on CHiPs, The Love Boat, Sliders, and Star Trek: Voyager.
He also made a brief voice-appearance in the fifth season of Family Guy.
So that’s it for our round-up of Where Are They Now… I can’t believe it’s been so long since the show ended but it’s great that it’s still so popular! Here are a few clips from the show as well as this first clip which is from the 2005 reunion show…
This clip is from the pilot show…
And finally, a clip from the final season…