Haviland Morris [Interview]
April 29, 2013 1 Comment
So there is this little John Hughes film from the 80’s called Sixteen Candles that is considered one of the sweetest teen romantic comedies of all time. Pretty much like anything John Hughes ever did, really. 30 years ago, everyone wanted to be from that small town in Illinois with the jocks, nerds, preppies, etc., just like 20 years ago I wanted to be a student at Bayside High dating Lisa Turtle. But, I digress. In this little film there was a smokin’ hot dame named Haviland Morris. The woman who (I had assumed) behind one of the first pairs of breasts I had ever seen on a movie (right after Jennifer Jason Leigh in Fast Times at Ridgemont High). Haviland’s character was always my favorite in the film because I could relate more to Anthony Michael Hall’s character more than Jake Ryan, and Anthony was the one who got her in the end! Molly Ringwald was alright, but in my mind she was no Haviland!
And Haviland has continued to do some amazing work since included her diabolically sexy appearance in Gremlins 2, a few year stint on the soap opera One Life To Live, 2013’s Burning Blue, and so much more. She is just as beautiful as ever and her talent has only grown. It was an honor to be able to share a few words with the legendary prom queen of the 80’s herself to discuss her varied career, her other life as a real estate agent, and what the future holds for Haviland Morris. Hint on the last topic: even she doesn’t know. Enjoy!
Was it strange doing a topless scene in a PG movie? How do you think John Hughes got away with that?
Well . . . I didn’t really do one. You’d have to ask my body double. Although it was definitely strange having someone else be me, naked. Disconcerting, really. But flattering, too, since they picked this 18-year old girl who ran 10 miles a day and had an absolutely gorgeous body.
Sixteen Candles was released just before the advent of the PG-13 rating, which is how he “got away” with it. Before the MPAA introduced the PG-13 rating in July of 1984, PG covered the whole territory from not quite appropriate for a G, right up to whatever merited an R.
What was the pace like working on a soap opera like One Life To Live? Did you enjoy the work?
I don’t really have any memories of the pace, per se, but I am a supremely bad soap opera actress. I was only on that show for a couple of days a month over a few years, so it never really became my clubhouse and, I have to say, I never got good at it. But I enjoyed it, anyway – actors do like to act.
You still continue to work as an actress, yet still maintain a career as a real estate agent. Is it tough to juggle both? And which do you find more rewarding?
Tough? Yeah, maybe a little, but some of us don’t feel awake unless we have at least one too many balls in the air. I really love both; they call on such different parts of me, but I was born an actor. I don’t have to do it every day, but I couldn’t face the prospect of never doing it again. If you told me I could never sell another apartment, I think I’d just figure out some other ball to juggle.
You know, I’ve read on the internet that I did that, but I don’t know where that came from – it’s entirely untrue. I was actually in 2 productions of Oklahoma – one high school production in Singapore and one community theater one in Hong Kong, but I never played Laurie. I think I was just in the chorus – or maybe I had some dinky, 2-line part. I suspect that the audiences of all nationalities received those particular productions as we do here in the United States: those with offspring on stage were wildly proud and everybody else managed to live through it.
You have graced the stage, television and film. What would you say is your favorite way to perform?
It’s all great fun. I tend to be a small-strokes kind of performer, so my work is probably better suited to film, but I never have that “Oh my God, here I am, doing what I always wanted to do!!!!!” feeling except when I’m on stage.
What does the future hold of Haviland Morris?
Oh yes, where DID I put that crystal ball . . . ?
What was the last thing that made you smile?
Remembering that production of Oklahoma – Thanks!