Soap Opera Weekly: M’fundo? Mfundo? To apostrophe or not to apostrophe?
M’fundo Morrison: It doesn’t have an apostrophe, but when I first came to the States, a lot of people had never seen an ‘m’ and an ‘f’ together before, so we added an apostrophe to help with the pronunciation.
Weekly: Do you prefer Justus working with the Quartermaines or the mob?
Morrison: Working with the Quartermaines is a trip, because it’s such a real, dysfunctional family. They’ve been together for so many years and bring all that history to it. The mob stuff is fun because it’s intense, gritty, grimy and very real.
Weekly: Who has taught you the most on the set?
Benard, Sonny) and Steve Burton (Jason). I spend a lot of time with both of those guys off the set, so I’ve learned an incredible amount from them — and not necessarily in the acting field. There are a lot of areas where I needed older-brotherly guidance, and they really helped me grow.
Weekly: I know your great-uncle is the Archbishop Desmond Tutu, so is most of your family in South Africa?
Morrison: Most of the family is in South Africa. My older sister is in London. My dad is in New Zealand, and my mom is in South Africa.
Weekly: Given that you come from a very cause-oriented family, what are the charities closest to your heart?
Morrison: The one that I work most hands-on with is Jim Brown‘s foundation, Amer-I-Can. We give criminals and kids who’ve gotten off the road a bit tools to get back on the right track. The response and the success rate is just amazing. Then, of course, Greenpeace. Growing up in New Zealand, the environment is so pristine you almost take it for granted. Then you learn there are forces putting that in jeopardy, and something has to be done. It’s Mother Earth. You can’t be disrespectful.
Weekly: Did you work to get rid of your New Zealand accent?
Morrison: I came to the States when I was 15. I wanted to be a professional tennis player, so I was at Nick Bollettieri‘s tennis academy. When I first got here, I did have this funny accent, and nobody could understand me. I was going to school, and all my friends were American. I guess you just assimilate.
Weekly: Obviously you did not pursue tennis, but I hear that Boris Becker is still your hero?
Morrison: Oh, my God. I was watching the Wimbledon finals. He was standing on the sidelines, and I was jumping up and down on the couch. He’s still very much my hero. I just love the passion with which he played the game.
Weekly: And what about golf?
Morrison: I’m a golf addict. I spend the whole weekend watching and playing it. Actually, a funny story: I don’t have cable, and I called Maurice to say, “Let me come watch.” He wouldn’t let me, because I was sick, but I still bum-rushed my way into his house and watched in the basement. His kids were joking that I was in the quarantine room. I called his wife and twisted her arm to let me come up there. I know who the real boss is.
Weekly: With whom do you play?
Morrison: Steve Burton and I play a lot. Recently, a lot of the cast was in Vegas. We got to play a course that Steve had wanted to play for a very long time — Royal Links [Golf Club]. I shot a 76 that day.
Weekly: So what happens the next time you need to watch golf?
Morrison: (laughs) I’ll have to bamboozle my way into [Maurice’s] house again!