Eric Morris (actor)
|Born||Frederic (or Frauka) Stein
November 19, 1931
Mount Sinai Hospital, Chicago, Illinois
|Residence||Los Angeles, California|
|Ethnicity||Ashkenazi Russian Jew|
|Spouse(s)||Joy (2nd wife)|
|Parents||Nessie and Veshel Stein|
Eric Morris is an American acting teacher and actor who founded his own theory of acting based on the works of Lee Strasberg and Martin Landau. Morris lives with his wife in Los Angeles and teaches actors the Eric Morris System of Acting.
His parents were Russian Jews; his father emigrated from Odessa to the United States in 1912, and his named was changed from Veshel Shtarenshees to Stein. They spoke Russian and Yiddish at home. Young Fred heard stories of pogroms as a child. He lived with his family in various apartments in a neighborhood inhabited chiefly by Jewish immigrants from Russia or Poland until, in seventh grade, his father bought a house. Young Fred suffered anti-semitic verbal abuse at the new school. He spent some years as a Boy Scout, attaining the rank of Star Scout. He was a soda jerk at Walgreens, and at age fourteen spent some Saturdays doing stand up comedy at a mafia night club. After a false start and a detour in therapy, Morris returned to Wright Junior College in 1950 and took up drama. He enrolled at Northwestern University School of Speech in 1952, as a junior theater major. Alvina Krause taught him acting, though he reports she did not like him; he got a "C" in the class. In 1978 he bought a house at Lake Arrowhead, fulfilling a wish he had made as a ten year old in 1941.
The Eric Morris System
Having published over six books in his theory, Morris claims that his System is derived partly from Lee Strasberg's Method Acting. However, Strasberg's Method focuses too much on craft, according to Morris, and not enough on the actor's instrument. Facing struggle in finding truth, he contemplated his theory while heading the Directors Unit at the Actor's Studio in Los Angeles. Morris' method recognizes the fact that actors have emotional blocks, tension, insecurities and other preventions to achieving a fundamental state of being, and works to clear these blocks, rendering the actor truly organic. In this sense, Morris stresses that acting is essentially living and being. There are seven major obligations to material, according to Eric: 1) Time and Place, 2) Relationship, 3) Emotional Obligation, 4) Character Obligation, 5) Historic Obligation, 6) Thematic Obligation, 7) Subtextual Obligation. After recognizing these 7 obligations, there are the choices the actor utilizes to render these emotions, and finally the approach to which the actors use these choices.
Morris has been acting since 1949. He is an original member of the Screen Actors Guild since 1954. He has worked in over 100 equity plays on stages across the US, including such stages as the Globe Theater and Chicago Rep. Morris has also worked in several television shows, including Lawman, Days of our Lives, Hogan's Heroes, The New Phil Silvers Show and Fame. Furthermore, Morris has worked in over 25 major motion pictures, including Pork Chop Hill, Battle Beyond the Stars and Mirage.
|1957||Monkey on My Back||Soldier|
|1959||Holiday for Lovers||Airforce Military Police||Uncredited|
|A Private's Affair||Orderly||Uncredited|
|1960||Ma Barker's Killer Brood||Fred Barker|
|1969||Strategy of Terror||Tippo||Alternative title: In Darkness Waiting|
|1976||My Friends Need Killing||Dr. MacLaine|
|1980||Battle Beyond the Stars||Feh|
|1983||Wavelength||Dr. Vernon Cottrell|
|1989||Cipayos (la tercera invasión)||English Colonel|
|1996||Eye for an Eye||Columnist|
|2006||Love Hollywood Style||Psychologist|
|1957||The Silent Service||Soldier||19 episodes, uncredited|
|1959||Lawman||Joey Young||1 episode|
|1961||Ben Casey||Patient||1 episode|
|Dr. Kildare||Doctor||1 episode, uncredited|
|1963–1964||The New Phil Silvers Show||Stanley||4 episodes, uncredited|
|1965||Kraft Suspense Theatre||Tippo||2 episodes|
|1969–1970||Hogan's Heroes||Captain Streicker||2 episodes|
|1982||Fame||Panel Member||1 episode|
|Square One Television||Wharfinger||1 episode|
- Eric, Morris (1988). Acting from the ultimate consciousness. New York, NY: Putnam. ISBN 0399513280. LCCN 87022338.
- Eric, Morris (1985). Irreverent acting. New York, NY: Perigee Books. ISBN 0399511393. LCCN 85003378.
- Eric, Morris (September 1, 2011). Freeing the Actor: An Actor's Desk Reference. Los Angeles: Ermor Enterprises. ISBN 978-0-9629709-6-2. Retrieved 2013-12-03.
- Eric, Morris (1988). Acting, Imaging, and the Unconscious. Los Angeles: Ermor Enterprises. ISBN 0-9629709-4-8. Retrieved 2013-12-03.
- Morris, Eric (2007). The Diary of a Professional Experiencer: An Autobiographical Journey Into the Evolution of an Acting System. 8004 Fareholm Drive, Los Angeles, California 90046: Ermor Enterprises. Retrieved 2013-12-02.