Born and raised in Long Island, New York, Billy Frolick is a graduate of NYU film school, where he studied under the famed professor (and Martin Scorsese mentor) Haig Manoogian.
In the early eighties, Frolick moved to Los Angeles and worked at various agencies, studios and production companies as a script reader, agency assistant, and development executive. When the Writer’s Guild went on strike in 1988, his career as a journalist began.
His first Premiere story, “Sink or Float,” became the prototype for the magazine’s popular “Life at the Bottom” column. Frolick’s work has appeared in the New Yorker, Movieline, TV Guide and the Los Angeles Times.
Frolick has served as the pseudonymous author of several book-length parodies: The Philistine Prophecy, Dumpisms and The Ditches of Edison County, a national bestseller that was translated into Japanese and Italian. In 2005 Atria Books, a division of Simon & Schuster, released the latest, The Five People You Meet in Hell.
Frolick’s 1995 Dutton book What I Really Want to Do is Direct tracked seven film school graduates over three years. Academy Award-winning director Steven Soderbergh wrote, “If you are reading my words right now, you need to buy this book. Billy Frolick has produced the definitive text on what it’s like to make a start in the film business. I found it absolutely riveting.” And from Publisher’s Weekly: “Essential reading.”
Frolick's directing debut, It Is What it Is, a feature from his original screenplay, starred Jonathan Silverman (The Single Guy, Weekend at Bernie's) and featured Stephen Tobolowsky (Memento) and Joshua Malina (The West Wing). It Is What it Is screened at several global festivals, including the 2003 New York International Film & Video Festival, where it won the Audience Award for Best Picture, as well as prizes for Best Screenplay and Best Directorial Debut.
For DreamWorks Animation, Frolick has written the feature screenplays Holy Cow (with Chicken Run writer Karey Kirkpatrick) and Madagascar (with Mark Burton, co-writer of Wallace & Gromit: Curse of the Were-Rabbit). Madagascar stars the voice talents of Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, Jada Pinkett Smith and David Schwimmer. The film grossed over a half a billion dollars worldwide during its 2005 theatrical release, and has sold over twenty million DVDs.