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Billy Redden

This 16-year-old boy from Rabun County, Georgia was the only “authentic” local to play the role of The Banjo Boy in John Boorman’s disturbing hit movie of 1972 Deliverance. Billy was hand-picked from his local elementary school largely due to his “look” ( Billy’s large head,skinny body, odd-shaped eyes and moronic grin had sadly branded him a poster-child for inbreeding and mental deficiency). The actual irony is that Billy was neither “retarded” nor even able to “fake” playing the banjo.

Where are they now?

Billy was discovered by director Tim Burton in 2003 working at an Alabama cafe as a dishwasher-busboy. Burton wanted Billy for a cameo (as the “banjo boy”) in his upcoming movie Big Fish [He also worked for a time giving “Deliverance” tours along the river where the movie was shot. Over 30 people have died on the river since the film was made. Redden found it too risky and quit (so he says). – webmaster ]

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4 responses to “Billy Redden”

  1. Tooga says:

    He wasnt playing the banjo. There was another person behind him doing the fret work.

  2. Indiana says... says:

    I always wondered about him and if he was actually autistic and if he is in fact playing the banjo. Whatever the answer, it is my favorite part of the movie and think he did an outstanding job in the scene.

  3. Laney Of Limerick says:

    I was informed by a reliable source in New Jersey that he is the current Governor Of Georgia. Now I am not saying this mind you however someone who is never wrong said so……

  4. Dum_dum says:

    It wasn’t Alabama it’s in Georgia at a place called Coookie Jar Cafe.

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