Bryce Dallas Howard Dishes On Gaining 15 Pounds For ‘The Help’ & Being Known As ‘Opie’s Daughter’

Bryce Dallas Howard stars as the pretentious, set-in-her-ways Hilly Holbrook in the drama, “The Help,” and while playing the cold-hearted socialite may have been a challenge for the 30-year-old actress, being asked to gain weight for the role certainly wasn’t!

“It was great,” Bryce told Access Hollywood of packing on an extra 15 pounds to play Holbrook at “The Help” premiere in Los Angeles on Tuesday. “It was very easy to do in Mississippi, where they pretty much even fry the butter!

“It’s like sort of a dream thing for an actor when they’re told to gain weight,” she continued, laughing.

Bryce, daughter of legendary actor/filmmaker Ron Howard (who won America over in the 60’s in his role as the lovable “Opie” on “The Andy Griffith Show”), said filming in a small Southern town – much like Mayberry, N.C. , where her father’s famed sitcom was set – had locals reminiscing about her Southern connection.

“I have to say, everybody in the town that we were shooting in knew me as ‘Opie’s daughter,’” she told Access. “I just feel like whenever I go to the South I just feel so welcomed because, you know, ‘The Andy Griffin Show’ was such a special show for so many people — particularly in that region — and it’s kind of a wonderful feeling.

“I feel very embraced as a result,” she added.

Catch Bryce, along with Emma Stone, Viola Davis and Jessica Chastain, in “The Help” – in theaters today.

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