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Temuera Morrison

Temuera Morrison
Temuera Morrison, August 2007
Born Temuera Derek Morrison
(1960-12-26) 26 December 1960
Rotorua, Bay of Plenty, New Zealand
Other names Tem
Occupation Actor
Years active 1972–present
Spouse(s) Ashlee Howden-Sadlier

Temuera Derek Morrison MNZM (born 26 December 1960) is a New Zealand actor, with roles including the abusive Jake "the Muss" Heke in 1994's Once Were Warriors, and bounty hunter Jango Fett in the Star Wars series. He also voiced Boba Fett for the 2004 special edition of Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.


  • Personal life 1
  • Career 2
    • Star Wars 2.1
    • Other roles 2.2
  • Filmography 3
  • Video Games 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Personal life

Morrison was born in the town of Rotorua, in the North Island of New Zealand, the son of Hana (née Stafford) and Laurie Morrison, a musician.[1] He is of Māori, Scottish, and Irish descent.[2] His sister was performer Taini Morrison and his uncle was musician Sir Howard Morrison. His secondary education took place at Wesley College, Auckland and Western Heights High School, Rotorua. Morrison lives in New Zealand, and divides his time filming there and in Australia and the United States. He has an adult son, James, and two young daughters, Te Rauna Morrison and Te Kahu Morrison, from a relationship in the late 1980s with singer Kim Willoughby from the all-girl group When The Cat's Away. Temuera Morrison's partner of seven years Ashlee Howden-Sadlier is 26 years his junior and is of Tūhoe and Ngāti Porou descent.


His first role was as Rangi in the 1973 film Rangi's Catch. He trained in Drama under the New Zealand Special Performing Arts Training Scheme. One of his earliest roles was in the 1988 film Never Say Die, opposite Lisa Eilbacher. After this he played Dr. Hone Ropata on the television soap opera Shortland Street from 1992–1995; he was immortalised when another character rebuked him with the line "You're not in Guatemala now, Dr. Ropata!"

In 1994 he received attention as the violent and abusive Māori husband Jake Heke in Once Were Warriors, a film adaptation of Alan Duff's novel of the same name. The role won him international acclaim and he received the 1994 award for best male performance in a dramatic role from the New Zealand Film and TV Awards. He reprised the role in the sequel, What Becomes of the Broken Hearted?, for which he received the Best Actor award from the New Zealand Film Awards. He said in 2010 that his role as Jake the Muss was a millstone round his neck.[3]

He has appeared in supporting roles in Speed 2: Cruise Control (1997) and The Beautiful Country (2004). In 2005, Morrison became the host of the talk show The Tem Show on New Zealand television.

In the 1996 Queen's Birthday Honours, Morrison was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit, for services to drama.[4]

He started writing an autobiography in 2009, which he hoped would inspire others to reach for the stars.[5]

He released his debut album, "Tem", through Sony Music Entertainment NZ in late November 2014 based on covers his father and uncle, Sir Howard Morrison, used to play for him/ perform live on stage, growing up.[6]

Star Wars

In recent years, Morrison has received much popularity from his role as the bounty hunter Jango Fett in Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (2002). Part of the film's plot involves an army of clones created with Jango's DNA; Morrison also provided acting and voice work for the soldiers. He reappeared as a number of clones in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, the latest film of the series, and rerecorded the lines of the character Boba Fett (Jango's "son") and another clone in the 2004 DVD re-releases of the original Star Wars trilogy, replacing the voice of Jason Wingreen.

He has since portrayed Jango Fett and his clones in a number of Star Wars video games, all produced by LucasArts. He played the commando "Boss" in Star Wars: Republic Commando, voiced all the troopers in Star Wars: Battlefront, and returned again to voice the bounty hunters Jango Fett and Boba Fett in Star Wars: Battlefront II as well as the clone advisor. He played Jango again in Star Wars: Bounty Hunter, which reveals the origins of Jango Fett, and played Boba Fett in the 2006 game Star Wars: Empire at War. He also reprised his roles uncredited as Jango Fett, Boba Fett, and the clones in the video games Star Wars Battlefront: Renegade Squadron, Star Wars Battlefront: Elite Squadron, and Lego Star Wars The Video Game.

Other roles

Temuera returned to Shortland Street for six weeks in June/July 2008 as Dr Hone Ropata.

In 2008, Morrison also appeared on New Zealand skit comedy television show Pulp Sport where he appeared in a sketch that made fun of him being cloned.

Morrison portrayed Abin Sur in the 2011 superhero film Green Lantern.[7]


Year Title Role Notes
1972 Rangi's Catch Rangi
1980 Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back Boba Fett voiceover, 2004 rerelease only
1984 Other Halves Tony
1986 Seekers Selwyn Broadhead 10 episodes
1987 Gloss Sean TV series
1987 Adventurer Maru TV series
1988 Mauri Young Cop
1990 Grasscutter, TheThe Grasscutter Det. Sgt. Harris
1990 Shark in the Park Mason, Mark Episode: "Ten-Zero, Dingo"
1990 Never Say Die Alf Winters
Shortland Street Dr. Hone Ropata
1994 Once Were Warriors Jake "the Muss" Heke
1996 Whipping Boy Jack
1996 Barb Wire Axel
1996 Island of Dr. Moreau, TheThe Island of Dr. Moreau Azazello
1996 Broken English Manu
1997 Speed 2: Cruise Control Juliano
1998 Six Days Seven Nights Jager
1999 Little White Lies Tim
1999 What Becomes of the Broken Hearted? Jake Heke
1999 From Dusk till Dawn 3: The Hangman's Daughter The Hangman Video
2000 Vertical Limit Major Rasul
2001 Crooked Earth Will Bastion
2001 Ihaka: Blunt Instrument Tito Ihaka TV movie
2001-2002 Mataku Presenter/Host TV series
2002 Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones Jango Fett
2004 Beautiful Country, TheThe Beautiful Country Snakehead
2004 Blueberry Runi AKA, Renegade
2005 Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith Commander Cody
2005 River Queen Te Kai Po
2008 Rain of the Children Rua Kenana
2009 Immortal Voyage of Captain Drake, TheThe Immortal Voyage of Captain Drake Don Sandovate TV movie
2009 Couples Retreat Briggs
2009 Marine 2, TheThe Marine 2 Damo Video
2010 Tracker Kereama
2011 Spartacus: Gods of the Arena Doctore Episode: "Past Transgressions"
Episode: "Missio"
2011 Green Lantern Abin Sur
2012 The Scorpion King 3: Battle for Redemption King Rasmusan
2012 Fresh Meat Hemi Crane
2013 Mt Zion Dad
2015 Tatau Anaru Vaipiti TV series

Video Games

Year Title Role
2002 Star Wars: Bounty Hunter Jango Fett
2004 Star Wars: Battlefront Republic Infantry / Republic Officer
2005 Star Wars: Republic Commando RC-1138 "Delta 38"
2005 Star Wars: Battlefront II Boba Fett / Jango Fett / Republic Officer 1 / Retired Clone Trooper
2006 Star Wars: Empire at War Boba Fett


  1. ^ "Temuera Morrison Biography (1961–)". Film Reference Library. Retrieved 12 February 2011. 
  2. ^ Spratt, Amanda (23 October 2005). "Howard Morrison a knight in full voice".  
  3. ^ "Once were Warriors star Jake a millstone". Stuff/Fairfax. 19 August 2014. 
  4. ^ Queen's Birthday Honours List 1996. Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Retrieved 4 January 2013.
  5. ^ "Once Were Warriors star hits write note". Stuff/Fairfax. 19 August 2014. 
  6. ^'tem'. 
  7. ^ Borys Kit (15 March 2010). """Two kiwi actors join "Green Lantern. Reuters ( Retrieved 12 February 2011. 

External links

  • Temuera Morrison at the Internet Movie Database
  • Temuera Morrison at the TCM Movie Database
  • Temuera Morrison at AllMovie
  • Betros, Chris (17 July 2006). "Once a warrior, Temuera Morrison now New Zealand's best known film star". Japan Today. Retrieved 20 February 2007.
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