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Froggy

300pxright}Froggie Laughlin

Biography

Character: Froggy Laughlin
Birthday: July 5, 1932
Place of Birth: San Gabriel, California
Date of Death: August 31, 1948
Place of Death: La Puente, California
First Short: The New Pupil
Last Short: Tale Of A Dog
Number of Shorts: 29
History: William Robert Laughlin was born in 1932 at the start of the stellar Spanky Years that defined for many the Our Gang series, little knowing he'd soon become part of their legacy. He was a late Rascal addition to the series, appearing during the less than stellar M-G-M years rather than the magical years that was Hal Roach Studios. Laughlin was cross-eyed, and therefore wore a pair of corrective thick glasses. Because of Laughlin's disability, he was frequently made fun of by other children in his neighborhood. As a result, his mother enrolled him in a drama class to overcome his self-consciousness. Laughlin had a love for cartoons, particularly those starring Popeye. He was once even given a Popeye ventriloquist dummy as a present. Laughlin was able to do an impersonation of Popeye. One day, an MGM talent scout visited the acting school that Laughlin was attending, and caught his Popeye impersonation. This led to Laughlin being hired to play Froggy in the Our Gang series. His younger brother, Mickey Laughlin, subsequently joined him in the series, apparently to replace George McFarland. When Our Gang folded, Billy auditioned for a few movies, but eventually decided to quit, wanting to return to a normal life. When he wasn't working, Billy loved bicycling. Sadly, Billy was killed in 1948 when a truck hit him while he was riding double on a motor scooter with a friend and delivering newspapers on an old three-lane highway near La Puente. He was sixteen years old. His horrible death is often listed as evidence of a morbid Our Gang urban legend known as "The Little Rascal Curse" attempting to tie together the random tragic fates of the Little Rascal stars.
In 1994, Froggy was played by young actor, Jordan Warkol (while voice actress E.G. Daily provided Froggy's voice), fully completing Billy's legacy as one of the most remembered Rascals.

List of Shorts

Other Projects

  • Johnny Doesn't Live Here Any More (1944)

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