Howard Morris

Actor

Howard Jerome Morris was an actor, voice actor, and director who was best known for his role in The Andy Griffith Show as Ernest T. Bass, and as "Uncle Goopy" in one of the most celebrated comedy sketches in history, on Sid Caesar's Your Show of Shows (1954).

Morris was first heard in animated cartoons in the early 1960s. He and Allan Melvin teamed up for a 50-episode King Features Syndicate series, Beetle Bailey, for which he and Melvin also wrote a number of episodes. He also provided the voices for Gene Deitch's Academy Award-winning Munro, about a four-year-old boy who was drafted into the Army.

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Howard Jerome Morris was an actor, voice actor, and director who was best known for his role in The Andy Griffith Show as Ernest T. Bass, and as "Uncle Goopy" in one of the most celebrated comedy sketches in history, on Sid Caesar's Your Show of Shows (1954).

Morris was first heard in animated cartoons in the early 1960s. He and Allan Melvin teamed up for a 50-episode King Features Syndicate series, Beetle Bailey, for which he and Melvin also wrote a number of episodes. He also provided the voices for Gene Deitch's Academy Award-winning Munro, about a four-year-old boy who was drafted into the Army.

Beginning in 1962, Morris played a variety of voices in many Hanna-Barbera series including The Jetsons as Jet Screamer who sang the "Eep opp ork ah ah!" song,[10] (said to be Morris' first work for Hanna-Barbera) and The Flintstones. He was the original voice of Atom Ant and provided the voice of Mr. Peebles in the Magilla Gorilla series, teaming up again with Allan Melvin who performed the voice for Magilla. In another series, Morris was heard as the voice of Breezly Bruin which was similar in tone with the Bill Scott vocalization of Bullwinkle. Morris had a disagreement with Joseph Barbera prior to production of the 1966-1967 season of Magilla Gorilla and Atom Ant and all of his voices were recast, mostly using Don Messick. Years later the two men reconciled and Morris was back doing those voices and others. He also lent his voice to Forsythe "Jughead" Jones on Filmation's series The Archies from 1968-1977. Moreover, he was the voice of Leonard Blush, "The Masked Singer" - he had a skin condition - as well as the regular voice of the Mount Pilot radio station's host on the Andy Griffith Show.

Morris also voiced the characters Professor Icenstein and Luigi La Bounci in the animated series Galaxy High. He voiced Mayor McCheese and later the Hamburglar (taking over for Larry Storch in 1986) in McDonald's McDonaldland ad campaign, which Morris also directed. He is also remembered by Filmation and Archie Show fans as the voice of Jughead Jones throughout the life of the franchise. Morris provided the voice of Wade Duck in the U.S. Acres segments of Garfield and Friends, and voiced Webbly in Bobby's World and Flem in Cow & Chicken. Morris supplied the voice of the koala in TV commercials for Qantas from 1967 through 1992 (saying the tagline, "I hate Qantas"), and voiced the character of Gopher in the Disney featurettes Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree and Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day. Also in 1989 he voiced a French gangster cat named Monte De Zar of Paris, France, (Fat Cat's Cousin) in an episode of Disney's: Chip 'N Dale Rescue Rangers  episode "Le Purrfect Crime".

While Morris continued to make himself available for voice and sound effect roles, he also began a new career in voice directing. Among the projects he directed are Police Academy, Richie Rich, Bionic Six, Goin' Coconuts, Pole Position, Galaxy High, The Snorks, The Mighty Orbots, Rose Petal Place, The Dogfather, Dragon's Lair, Tom and Jerry: The Movie, Turbo Teen, Cabbage Patch Kids: First Christmas, Little Clowns of Happytown, The Little Wizards, Space Stars and Kidd Video.

Morris directed some episodes of The Andy Griffith Show, Gomer Pyle, Hogan's Heroes, The Dick Van Dyke Show, the black and white pilot episode of Get Smart and later, episodes of One Day at a Time, Bewitched, and single episodes of many other comedy shows.

Morris also directed Doris Day in her final film, With Six You Get Eggroll (1968). Other films he directed were Don't Drink the Water (1969) and Who's Minding the Mint? (1967).

Mel Brooks occasionally cast Morris in his films. For example, he played Brooks' mentor psychiatrist Dr. Lilloman in the comedy High Anxiety (1977), the emperor's court spokesman ("Here, wash this!") in History of the World, Part I (1981), and played a bum named Sailor living in the streets in Life Stinks (1991).

In 1984, he played Dr. Zidell in Splash, a film directed by Ron Howard (the two had first worked together on The Andy Griffith Show). He worked with his old friend and trouping partner Sid Caesar as nervous Jewish tailors in the 1998 movie of Ray Bradbury's The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit.

In 1986, he reprised his famous role as Ernest T. Bass in the high-rated television movie Return to Mayberry.

In 1989, he guest starred on Murder, She Wrote.

In 1994, Morris voiced Zinn-a-Zu the Bird, Garfield the Third Fish, the Sneetches and Mr. Fox in Storybook Weaver, and later in 2004, remade as Storybook Weaver Deluxe.

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