Happy birthday, Billy Boyd!
While we all remember him for his role as the mischievous hobbit, Peregrin Took, in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Scottish actor Billy Boyd has been involved in everything from television to theatre–he is even the lead singer in a successful band called Beecake.
Born August 28, 1968 in Glasgow, Scotland, Billy exhibited an interest for acting at a young age when he was inspired to try it after seeing Star Wars. He got his first taste for it in a school production of Oliver Twist at the age of ten. After that, he appeared in various local theater productions including a production of Hans Andersen in 1984; however, he did not pursue a career in acting at first. Instead, at the age of seventeen, he left school and went to work in a book-binding workshop. There he worked for six years, first as an apprentice and then workman. In an almost prophetic coincidence, The Lord of the Rings was one of the books printed there, and Billy bound many copies of Tolkien’s epic by hand.
After leaving the book-binding workshop, Billy enrolled at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in a three year course for a Dramatic Arts degree. During that time, Billy had some roles in television including programs such as Taggart and Down Amongst the Boys. After graduation, Billy appeared in various theatre productions including his stage debut in a title role of the musical Secret Diary of Adrian Mole at the Byre Theatre of St. Andrews.
It was in 2001, though, that Billy appeared in his breakout role as Pippin Took, a hobbit in Peter Jackson’s adaptation of JRR Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring. He went on to appear in the next two installments of the trilogy: The Two Towers and The Return of the King.
Since appearing in The Lord of the Rings, Billy has gone on to be involved in other films, television, and theatre. Recently, Billy appeared as a VIP guest in the 2013 UK tour of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Radio Show, and made his debut at the Globe in the 2013 production of Macbeth in the role of Banquo.
Along with theatre and film work, Billy’s band Beecake recently released their second album Blue Sky Paradise, and the video for their single ‘The Clown’ has been nominated for awards at the Raindance Film Festival, as well as the Chicago International Shorts Festival.
So raise a pint and break out a barrel of Old Toby! Here’s to wishing one of our favorite hobbits a very happy birthday from Middle-earth News!