Bill Barretta

  • Celebrity
  • Birth Name: William Paul Barretta
  • Birth Place: Yardley, Pennsylvania, United States
  • Profession: Puppeteer, Actor, Producer, Director
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Fast Facts

  • Started building and performing puppets at the age of 8, after his older brother wrote to Jim Henson for advice about how to create a Muppet and Henson wrote back with detailed instructions.
  • Studied acting in Philadelphia and the Meisner technique at Neighborhood Playhouse in New York City after dropping out of high school.
  • Became good friends with Brian Henson when both were teenagers working as janitors at Sesame Place theme park in 1981. Henson would later recommend Barretta for the role of Earl Sinclair on Dinosaurs because he remembered how well he could impersonate Jackie Gleason.
  • Shaved his head to get into character as Earl Sinclair because having no hair made him feel more like a reptile.
  • Based Pepe the King Prawn's speech patterns after his wife's Spanish aunt. The character became a king prawn after he mentioned to another puppeteer that the aunt was "a little selfish," but he misspoke "a little shellfish."
  • Based the character of Johnny Fiama after his memories of his Italian father and grandfather.

Relationships

  • Cristina Campbell — Wife
  • Gene Barretta — Brother
  • Gene Barretta Sr. — Father
  • Paul Giordano Sr. — Grandfather

Details

  • Birth Name: William Paul Barretta
  • Birth Place: Yardley, Pennsylvania, United States
  • Profession: Puppeteer, Actor, Producer, Director

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