Frank Oz

Director, Puppeteer, Singer
Because he voiced and operated several of the most beloved Muppets - Cookie Monster, Bert, Fozzie Bear and Miss Piggy - puppeteer Frank Oz firmly secured his place in pop culture history behind friend, mentor and Muppet ... Read more »
Born: 05/24/1944 in Hereford, England, GB

Filmography

Actor (50)

Star Wars: Rebels 2015 (Tv Show)

Voice

Sesame Street 1969 - 2014 (TV Show)

Actor

Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith 2005 (Movie)

Voice of Yoda (Actor)

When Star Wars Ruled the World 2004 - 2005 (TV Show)

Actor

Zathura 2005 (Movie)

Voice of Robot (Actor)

Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones 2002 (Movie)

of Yoda (Voice)

Monsters, Inc. 2001 (Movie)

Voice of Fungus (Actor)

Sesame Street 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Actor

Muppets From Space 1999 (Movie)

of Miss Piggy/Fozzie Bear/Animal/Sam Eagle (Voice)

Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace 1999 (Movie)

of Yoda (Voice)

The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland 1999 (Movie)

of Bert/Grover/Cookie Monster (Voice)

12th Annual American Comedy Awards 1997 - 1998 (TV Show)

Actor

Blues Brothers 2000 1998 (Movie)

Prison Warden (Actor)

Elmo Saves Christmas 1996 - 1997 (TV Show)

Actor

Muppet Treasure Island 1996 (Movie)

Miss Piggy (Actor)

Muppets Tonight 1995 - 1996 (TV Show)

Actor

George Lucas: Heroes, Myths and Magic 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)

Actor

Innocent Blood 1992 (Movie)

Pathologist (Actor)

The Muppet Christmas Carol 1992 (Movie)

Animal (Actor)

Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake 1990 - 1991 (TV Show)

Voice

The Muppets Celebrate Jim Henson 1990 - 1991 (TV Show)

Actor

Disneyland's 35th Anniversary Celebration 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Actor

The 41st Annual Emmy Awards 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Voice

The Muppets at Walt Disney World 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Actor

Free to Be... a Family 1988 - 1989 (TV Show)

Voice

Sesame Street... 20 and Still Counting 1988 - 1989 (TV Show)

Actor

A Muppet Family Christmas 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Voice

Sesame Street, Special 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Voice

Labyrinth 1986 (Movie)

Wiseman (Actor)

San Francisco Ballet in Cinderella 1985 - 1986 (TV Show)

Voice

The Muppets: a Celebration of 30 Years 1985 - 1986 (TV Show)

Voice

The Television Academy Hall of Fame 1985 - 1986 (TV Show)

Actor

Sesame Street Presents: Follow That Bird 1985 (Movie)

of Cookie Monster/Bert/Grover (Voice)

Spies Like Us 1985 (Movie)

Test Monitor (Actor)

The Muppets Take Manhattan 1984 (Movie)

of Miss Piggy/Fozzie Bear/Animal (Voice)

Return of the Jedi 1983 (Movie)

of Yoda (Voice)

The Fantastic Miss Piggy Show 1982 - 1983 (TV Show)

Voice

Trading Places 1983 (Movie)

Corrupt Cop (Actor)

The Dark Crystal 1982 (Movie)

Aughra (Actor)

An American Werewolf in London 1981 (Movie)

of Miss Piggy (Voice)

The Great Muppet Caper 1981 (Movie)

of Miss Piggy/Fozzie Bear/Anima (Voice)

The Muppet Show 1976 - 1981 (TV Show)

Actor

The Blues Brothers 1980 (Movie)

Corrections Officer (Actor)

The Empire Strikes Back 1980 (Movie)

of Yoda (Voice)

The Muppet Movie 1979 (Movie)

of Miss Piggy/Fozzie Bear/Animal/Sam the Eagle (Voice)

The World of Jim Henson (TV Show)

Actor
Director (13)

Leverage 2011 (Tv Show)

Director

Death at a Funeral 2007 (Movie)

(Director)

The Stepford Wives 2004 (Movie)

(Director)

The Score 2001 (Movie)

(Director)

Bowfinger 1999 (Movie)

(Director)

In & Out 1997 (Movie)

(Director)

The Indian in the Cupboard 1995 (Movie)

(Director)

Housesitter 1992 (Movie)

(Director)

What About Bob? 1991 (Movie)

(Director)

Dirty Rotten Scoundrels 1988 (Movie)

(Director)

Little Shop of Horrors 1986 (Movie)

(Director)

The Muppets Take Manhattan 1984 (Movie)

(Director)

The Dark Crystal 1982 (Movie)

(Director)
Physical Effects (4)

Sesame Street Presents: The Street We Live On 2003 - 2004 (TV Show)

Puppeteer

Elmo's Magic Cookbook 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Puppets Design

Holiday Greetings From the Ed Sullivan Show 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)

Puppets Design

The Great Muppet Caper 1981 (Movie)

Muppet performer (Puppets Design)
Producer (3)

Muppet Treasure Island 1996 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

The Muppet Christmas Carol 1992 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

The Great Muppet Caper 1981 (Movie)

(Producer)
Writer (1)

The Muppets Take Manhattan 1984 (Movie)

(Screenplay)
Music (1)

The Muppet Movie 1979 (Movie)

("Movin' Right Along" "Can You Picture That?" "Never Before") (Song Performer)
Other (3)

Muppets From Space 1999 (Movie)

(Special Thanks)

The Muppets Go Hollywood 1980 - 1981 (TV Show)

Creative Consultant

The Muppet Movie 1979 (Movie)

(Creative Consultant)

Biography

Because he voiced and operated several of the most beloved Muppets - Cookie Monster, Bert, Fozzie Bear and Miss Piggy - puppeteer Frank Oz firmly secured his place in pop culture history behind friend, mentor and Muppet creator Jim Henson. But always looking to branch out creatively, Oz moved into directing, starting with a co-helming effort alongside Henson on "The Dark Crystal" (1982), which led to a second career as a talented and success director of primarily comedies. Though he stayed within the Muppet universe for his second film, "The Muppets Take Manhattan" (1984), Oz branched out on his own to direct two hits, "Little Shop of Horrors" (1986) and "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels" (1988). Meanwhile, he teamed with George Lucas to bring to life the mystical Jedi master, Yoda, for "The Empire Strikes Back" (1980) and "The Return of the Jedi" (1983), creating perhaps one of the most memorable characters within the "Star Wars" universe. After losing friend and collaborator Jim Henson to pneumonia in 1990, Oz nonetheless maintained his legacy by performing his Muppet characters on a variety of television specials, guest appearances and throughout the long run of "Sesame Street" (PBS, 1969- ). Though he often had cameo roles in several John Landis like "The Blues Brothers" (1980) and "Trading Places" (1983), Oz preferred staying behind the cameras to direct eclectic fare like the Hollywood satire "Bowfinger" (1999), the heist thriller "The Score" (2001) and the black comedy, "Death at a Funeral" (2007), underscoring his unique ability to wear many hats.

Relationships

Isidore Oznowicz

Father
Emigrated to the United States when son was five years old

Frances Oznowicz

Mother
Emigrated to the United States when son was five years old

Robin Garsen

Wife
Married December 12, 1979

EDUCATION

Oakland City College

Oakland , California 1962

Oakland Technical High School

Oakland , California

Milestones

2007

Helmed the British black comedy "Death at a Funeral"

2005

Once again voiced Yoda in "Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith," the final film of the Star Wars saga

2004

Directed Nicole Kidman and Matthew Broderick in the remake of Bryan Forbes' 1975 cult classic "The Stepford Wives"

2002

Reprised role of Yoda in "Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones"

2001

Directed the drama "The Score," starring Robert De Niro, Marlon Brando and Edward Norton

1999

Once again operated the Yoda puppet and provided his voice for the "Star Wars" prequel "Episode I - The Phantom Menace"

1998

Reprised his role as a corrections officer for John Landis' "Blues Brothers 2000"

1997

Directed the comedy "In & Out," starring Kevin Kline

1996

Executive produced and performed in "Muppet Treasure Island," which was directed by Henson's son Brian

1996

Puppeteer and provided voice characterizations for ABC's short-lived "Muppets Tonight!"

1995

Directed "The Indian in the Cupboard," based on the children's book of the same name

1993

Signed a two-year deal with Limelight Entertainment to direct commercials

1992

Debut as executive producer, "The Muppet Christmas Carol"

1991

Helmed the comedy "What About Bob?" starring Bill Murray and Richard Dreyfuss

1989

Contributed Muppet characters to the short-lived NBC series "The Jim Henson Hour"

1988

Directed "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels," starring Steve Martin and Michael Caine

1986

Voiced characters from the movie "Labyrinth," starring David Bowie; was directed by Jim Henson and produced by George Lucas

1986

First non-Muppet feature directing assignment, "Little Shop of Horrors"

1984

First screenplay credit and solo directorial debut, "The Muppets Take Manhattan"; also puppeteer and voice of Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear and Animal

1983

Had a small role as a cop in John Landis' "Trading Places"

1983

Once again voiced Yoda for "Return of the Jedi"

1982

Feature directing debut, co-directed (with Jim Henson) "The Dark Crystal"

1981

First feature as producer, "The Great Muppet Caper"

1980

Made his feature acting debut as a corrections officer in John Landis' "The Blues Brothers"

1980

Performed the voice and puppet for Yoda in George Lucas' "The Empire Strikes Back"

1979

First feature was Jim Henson's "The Muppet Movie"; credited for voices, as a song performer and as creative consultant

1976

Created many voices for the syndicated series "The Muppet Show"

1968

First notable collaboration with Jim Henson, "Sesame Street" (PBS)

1963

Recruited by Jim Henson at a West Coast convention of puppeteers

Began staging his own puppet shows at age 12, and was an accomplished amateur puppeteer by high school

Bonus Trivia

.

In 1999, Oz received the John C. Zacharis Memorial Award from Emerson College in Boston, MA.

.

On the Henson legacy: "Something said at Jim's memorial was that he made good guys interesting. It's always the bad guys who are interesting. Jim's were good guys, but they were weird - just the irreverent joy he created was amazing." - Frank Oz quoted in The Los Angeles Times, Sept. 14, 1997

.

"In one rehearsal, I was working as Miss Piggy with Jim, who was doing Kermit, and the script called for her to slap him. Instead of a slap, I gave him a funny karate hit. Somehow, that hit crystallized her character for me - the coyness hiding the aggression; the conflict of that love with her desire for a career; her hunger for a glamour image; her tremendous out-and-out ego." - Frank Oz quoted in the obituary of Jim Henson in The New York Times, May 17, 1990

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