Around the world, countless movie fans remember Toby Froud for his role as the baby Toby who is wished away by Jennifer Connelly, his half-sister Sarah, to David Bowie the Goblin King Jareth, in director Jim Henson’s 1986 feature film, Labyrinth...
The son of the film's conceptual designer Brian Froud and puppet builder Wendy Froud, Toby Froud was born in 1984 has spent a lifetime steeped in a world of goblins, faeries, trolls, puppet theatre and magic-making. Appropriately enough, in 1999, when he was 15, Toby did his first apprenticeship at the Muppet Workshop in New York. In 2004 Froud was fortunate enough to go out to WETA. The special effects studio owned by Richard Taylor, to be part of the team to sculpt and fabricate on the first installment of The Chronicles of Narnia in the feature-film series. Continuing with miniature work and sculpting at WETA on director Peter Jackson’s movie, King Kong.
An accomplished stilt-walker and fire-juggler, Toby has appeared as a costumed performer in collaboration with Faerieworlds LLC, William Todd Jones and The Daughters of Elven and as one of the puppeteers for the opening act for the band, Scissor Sisters at the 2005 Brit Awards. He created and built props and sets for What’s Your News, the British television program for children, and character suit performance for Nickelodeon’s, Bunny Town. Froud also created performance masks and puppets, for the London theatre productions of Beauty and the Beast and Cinderella.
In 2006, Toby Froud graduated Wimbledon School of Art, receiving a BA in Technical Arts and Special Effects and continued as a free-lance artist, creating work for theatre, film, video and television. In 2009 Froud joined the Michael Curry Workshop, responsible for the award winning Broadway show Lion King, in Portland, Oregon, as a fabricator and video artist. In 2010, Legacy Effects, the special effects studio, in San Fernando, CA, known for such films as Jurassic Park, Spider-Man, Iron Man and Avatar, hired Froud as a fabricator on part of the Jimmy Dean commercial campaign, as well as fabricating on feature film Cowboys & Aliens.
Since 2010, Toby Froud has been with Laika Entertainment, the stop-motion and animation company in Portland, Oregon, producer of the award winning animated feature film, Coraline. Toby was hired as puppet fabricator for the film, ParaNorman and became a sculptor on Laika's movie, The Boxtrolls which was released last year.
Toby directed his first puppet short film, titled “Lessons Learned” which premiered in 2014 and has played in festivals around the world. There will be a screening this summer, 2015, at the Portland Film Festival.