Frank Oz

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Born

5/25/1944 , Hereford, England, UK

Birth Name

Richard Frank Oznowicz

Gender

Male

Biography:

Frank Oz is a film director, puppeteer, actor, and voice actor, born Richard Frank Oznowicz on May 25, 1944 in Herefordshire, England. He is best known for his Sesame Street characters, Miss Piggy, Cookie Monster, Bert, and Grover, and for operating and voicing Yoda in the Star Wars series. Both parents were puppeteers, and when Oz was five, the family relocated to Oakland, California. Although Oz performed in his family's shows, he intended on a journalism career. While studying at Oakland College, however, he connected with Jim Henson and returned to puppetry to collaborate on developing the Muppets. In 1979, Oz created the character of Yoda, including Yoda's trademark backwards syntax. Star Wars' creator George Lucas was so impressed that he lobbied for Oz to receive an Academy Award nomination. In 1982 Oz made his directing debut with The Dark Crystal, followed by a number of comedies, dramas, and television shows over the next few decades. With Little Shop of Horrors (1986), Oz met the challenge of directing a 15-foot-tall talking plant that required up to 40 puppeteers to operate. Oz has been nominated for a number of awards and has won four Emmys. He has been married since 1979 and has four children.



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