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Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.

Thursday's Connector: Morgan Freeman

May 31st, 2010
03:46 PM ET

With one of the most distinctive and recognizable voices in Hollywood, actor Morgan Freeman is no stranger to the big screen and Hollywood success.

Morgan Freeman is your Connector of the Day.

Morgan Freeman is your Connector of the Day.

Born in 1937 in Memphis Tennessee, Freeman had his acting debut at the young age of only nine-years-old, playing the lead in his school play.

From there, his acting experience only grew. At the age of 12, Freeman won a statewide drama competition and even hosted his very own radio show from his local high school.

After performing in a number of other school plays, Freeman was offered a partial drama scholarship from Jackson State University, but ultimately turned it down to take a job as a mechanic with the U.S. Air Force.

Although Freeman had a brief absence from the acting world, he quickly returned and ultimately made his off-Broadway debut in 1967 and his Broadway debut in 1968.

During the 1970's and 1980's, Freeman acted in a number of films and television shows, but it wasn't until his role in "Driving Miss Daisy" that he became a bona fide Hollywood celebrity.

Freeman went on to have leading roles in some of America's most memorable films including "Shawshank Redemption," "Seven," "Bruce Almighty," and even narrated one of the most successful documentaries of all time - "March of the Penguins."

In 2004, Freeman won an Academy Award for his supporting role in "Million Dollar Baby."

Today, Freeman is working with the Science Channel on a new show called "Through the Wormhole" which is a new series on outer space.

soundoff (59 Responses)
  1. Jurgen R. Brul

    Hello Morgan Porterfield Freeman junior and CNN friends,

    I would like an answer from Morgan Porterfield Freeman junior on the following questions:
    – Why is your latest show called "Through the Wormhole"?
    – What is your opinion on live on the planet Mars?
    – What is your opinion on aliens?
    – As an American actor you played Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela in the movie Invictus,
    WHO will win the South Africa World Cup?
    – What can we expect from you in 2010?
    – How are you inspiring people all over the world to make our world a Better Healthier and Beautiful Place?

    I am awaiting Morgan Porterfield Freeman junior’s replies.

    Greetings,
    Jurgen R. Brul
    Hometown: Paramaribo
    Country: Suriname
    Latin-American

    May 31, 2010 at 4:17 pm | Reply
  2. Chuko Kpolugbo

    Hello Morgan Freeman!

    I would like to know what it is like having one of the most recognized voices on earth today? And since you are narrating a show on outer space, have you ever considered narrating a short history of earth and broadcasting it via radio to our extra-terrestrial brothers?

    Chuko
    Halifax, Nova Scotia
    Canada

    June 1, 2010 at 3:30 am | Reply
  3. Raphael Albert

    Mr Freeman, my questions are:
    What are the greatest challenges a rising black actor can face in Hollywood?
    What is the greatest challenge you have ever faced when you were beginning as an actor?
    What is the most challenging role you have ever played as an actor?

    Raphael Albert.
    From Lagos, Nigeria.

    June 1, 2010 at 9:58 am | Reply
  4. Robert Anderson

    First of all I'd just like to say how awesome and legendary Morgan Freeman is. Then I'd like to ask a question. You play many roles of very influential people, such as God and Nelson Mandela. How do you prepare for these roles? Thanks

    Robert Anderson
    Planet Earth

    June 1, 2010 at 12:02 pm | Reply
  5. Janice Russo Bratislava, Slovak Republic

    Dear Morgan,
    Have you completely recovered from the injuries you sustained in the automobile accident? When you are approached by your fans, does it annoy you? I often wonder if the price "stars" pay for fame and fortune is worth living in a fishbowl. How do deal with your privacy being invaded by fans, paparazzi, gossip rags, etc.? Are you aware of the enomorous pleasure your acting has painted on the landscape of life? Watching you perform is like meeting an old friend. Your acting gifts are those of an Ambassador of Reasoning and Gentility. Thank you for making me think deeply about the situations you have tackled on screen.

    June 1, 2010 at 12:22 pm | Reply
  6. Heathcliffe Dyba

    Hello Mr Morgan Freeman,

    What questions can you ask one of the world's greatest actors if you had the chance? There are simply too many

    * Which cast of your many movies did you find the most fun to be a part of?
    * What do you most enjoy about making movies and being an actor?
    * Who would win in an arm wrestle between you and Mr Clint Eastwood?
    * What do you think we can all do to help make our world a much more friendly and peaceful place?

    Heathcliffe Dyba (a huge Morgan Freeman fan)
    From Manchester, UK

    P.S I absolutely love your role in Deep Impact!!!

    June 1, 2010 at 12:27 pm | Reply
  7. cqengland

    I learned to speak English while watching Easy Reader and the rest of the Electric Company gang. I have read that you were not enthusiastic about the project, although it was a huge success. All of these years later, how did that show, and the fantastic group of people you worked with influence where you went in the rest of your career?

    June 1, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Reply
  8. Kristi

    I use to love you when I was a kids watching the electric company. Are you the only individual from that show to become one of the biggest stars of all times? You are an amazing actor Mr. Freeman!

    June 1, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Reply
  9. Derrick Chapman

    What is your opinion of the CBS television series "Amos and Andy?" Do you think it denegrated black Americans or was it no more objectionable than "Good Times," etc? It did offer black actors a rare opportunity to play parts other than servant roles.

    June 1, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Reply
  10. Federico Furzan

    Mr. Freeman, let me just say you are absolutely mesmerizing...

    My question was regarding your career. In your opinion, what's the best character you've played?

    June 1, 2010 at 12:59 pm | Reply
  11. Jerri

    Hi Mr Morgan, Are you the same person as in your role in the film tittled LEAN ON ME. Is my best film, i watch it on and on,is simply fantastic. More grease to your elbow Brother.....

    June 1, 2010 at 1:49 pm | Reply
  12. joan b

    mr. freeman
    you are the great actor of all time.your voice
    makes people stop in there tracks.what ever
    you do on the silver screen.i watch for i know
    it is well done what ever shows you are in it
    i watch.again you and clint eastwood together
    are the best a great fan god bless you and keep you safe

    June 1, 2010 at 1:54 pm | Reply
  13. Kunle

    First of all,I want to say I've enjoyed all your movies I've seen,my first being Shawshank Redemption and I think you have a great voice.My question is,you played the part of God in both 'Bruce Almighty' and 'Evan Almighty',what are your opinions about God and religion, Christianity in particular?

    Kunle
    Northampton,England.

    June 1, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Reply
  14. Keira

    Hello,

    I'd like to know the following:

    - Who do you think would win in a "voiceover showdown", you or James Earl Jones?

    - I saw a documentary in which you offered to pay for a high school prom in Mississippi if the prom was integrated. This year there was another prom controversy involving gay teen Constance McMillan. Why do you think there are such strong feelings about diversity in MS? What do you think is the key to promoting diversity and equality?

    - Do you think more resources should be invested in exploring outer space or should we spend more time discovering resources we already have here on earth?

    Thank you!

    Keira
    NY

    June 1, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Reply
  15. claudia diaz

    MR. FREEMAN

    WHICH FICTIONAL CHARECTER FROM LITERATURE WOULD YOU LIKE TO PLAY IN A MOVIE AND WHICH ON THE STAGE?

    CLAUDIA
    QUERETARO, MEXICO

    June 1, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Reply
  16. Sara

    Happy Birthday. Keep doing your excellent work

    A huge fan!

    June 1, 2010 at 2:44 pm | Reply
  17. Don Halpern

    Mr. Freeman, you are one my favorite actors. Thank you for all the great work you have shared with us. Many years ago I worked for Smith + Newphew in Memphis, TN. I worked there between 1991 and 1998. There was a gentlemen I used to see that looked and sounded like you.. You have a very distinctive voice. I asked him many times if he was related to you, each time he denied knowing anything about you. The resemblance was amazing. Does this mean anything to you or did I just re-affirm the notion that everyone has a twin? Keep up the great work and thanks for your time.

    June 1, 2010 at 3:38 pm | Reply
  18. glenn martin

    Goodday to you Sir, I met you once in the projection booth of the Old Port of Montreal, Canada. I am a friend of Jay Baruchel, also from Montreal and am big fan of yours.
    If you could influenece your presidents foreigh and / or domestic policy, what issues would like to see Barack Obama adress.

    thanks

    June 1, 2010 at 4:45 pm | Reply
  19. Amaryllis Martina

    Mr.Freeman you are one of my favorite actors!!.
    You are the great actor of all the time!

    I hope you will visit Curacao Neth.Antlles (Caribbean).
    God bless you!

    Name:Amaryllis Martina
    From: Curacao Netherlands Antilles
    Caribbean

    June 1, 2010 at 4:49 pm | Reply
  20. Aaron David

    Mr Freeman,

    How did it feel to play Nelson Mandela in Invictus? Did you get to meet the Great Madiba?

    Wishing many more successful years,

    Aaron

    June 1, 2010 at 4:52 pm | Reply
  21. December Dickerson

    Dear Morgan Freeman,

    Hello, my name is December. I enjoy watching all of your movies. Your life has been rewarding as well as fulfilling throughout your career in film making and in the military. Thank you for all that you do.

    My question is: When is your next interview? Are you going to do any new movies? Would you be willing to do a meet and greet with the military with some celebrity friends?

    Respectfully,

    Miss Dickerson

    June 1, 2010 at 4:54 pm | Reply
  22. Regie Joseph

    Hai Morgan,
    Did you meet Mr. Nelson Mandela before playing his character, and how much time did you spend with him?

    June 1, 2010 at 5:26 pm | Reply
  23. Janece

    I had the incredible pleasure of meeting you in Spanish Town on Virgin Gorda in March 1990, while you were on your sailboat with a couple of friends. Being from Memphis, I couldn't resist coming over to meet and speak with you. Thank you for being so gracious and kind enough to give a few minutes to a very curious 16-year-old at the time!

    At the time you "fussed" at me for having gone to see "Steel Magnolias" in the theater instead of "Driving Miss Daisy," and I promised I would see "Daisy" very soon. Well, I did, and I've seen it countless times since then. I try not to miss any of your movies anymore. You're just that wonderful to watch on the screen!

    So, do you ever get the chance to relax and get down to the Islands very much anymore?

    Take care!!
    Janece Sterling
    Memphis, TN

    June 1, 2010 at 5:53 pm | Reply
  24. mel horvitz

    I am a fellow alumni at LACC. Do you have a favorite memory of the school?

    June 1, 2010 at 6:00 pm | Reply
  25. Christina

    Dear Morgan Freeman,

    Are you happy? I am a young fan of yours and I was wondering if you were happy, with all your success and wealthiness 🙂

    Sincerely yours,
    Christina

    June 1, 2010 at 7:07 pm | Reply
  26. fred hall

    Dear Mr. Freeman:
    I admire your talent and personality greatly. I have most of your movies and look forward to new releases.
    Which of your movies are you proudest of?
    Which of your personal actions are you proudest of?
    What doi you enjoy most in life?

    June 1, 2010 at 7:41 pm | Reply
  27. Charma Ellis

    Hi how are you. Have you ever been to Jamaica? Would you visit and contribute to a charity if asked to?

    June 1, 2010 at 7:48 pm | Reply
  28. Bill

    Dear Mr. Freeman,

    In all the years of making movies, what specific situation or event has moved you the most?

    June 1, 2010 at 8:00 pm | Reply
  29. Karen

    Hi,
    What are YOUR all-time favorite movies?
    And what's your favorite flavor of ice cream?

    June 1, 2010 at 8:12 pm | Reply
  30. Elias

    I’m an actor from Quito, Ecuador.

    My dream has always been to make it to Hollywood, but its seems an impossible one being born in a third world reality and in a country where there is no film industry. What would you have done if you would have had to face the same reality in your artistic life? Thanks

    June 1, 2010 at 8:18 pm | Reply
  31. Nick

    What is your biggest weakness?

    June 1, 2010 at 9:12 pm | Reply
  32. Trevor

    Why was your part in Brubaker so short? You should have demanded some extra lines. Had the chance to do something other than yell and clap. Don't ever let Robert Redford take the stage like that. Yours was the only performance worth watching.

    June 1, 2010 at 9:35 pm | Reply
  33. Margarida

    Dear Mr. Freeman,
    First of all, I just wanted to congratulate you on your great career as an actor and thank you for working on such wonderful movies, that allow us to dream...
    I wanted to ask you when and how did you know that you wanted to be an actor and work in the film industry?? What lead you to it??
    I love cinema and will be going to NY in August to study literature and film studies in college. Thank you 🙂
    Margarida

    June 1, 2010 at 10:17 pm | Reply
  34. yousef

    Hi Mr Morgan
    Did you face a problem in getting a roll in any picture because of your skin color or as being a black actor

    Thanks and best regards

    Yousef Elamri
    CEO of CIT

    June 1, 2010 at 10:31 pm | Reply
  35. toddsaed

    Why did they not mention Deep IMpact, truly memorable.?
    Do you have an open mike night for blues harp players at
    your club? What would you suggest to Bias and me on ways
    to break into the business, and to those who are not comfortable politicking or self promoting? Who are the actors who have little
    ego, are down to earth, and approachable? Would you consider Raiders of the LOst Ark andall time favorite, and does Shawshank Redemption earn you the most attention from fans? WIll you choose to live with the aliens when we connect , or stay at home?" Should the aliens be required to have a green card in Arizona?

    June 1, 2010 at 11:42 pm | Reply
  36. toddsaed

    What is God"s name for the star RIgel in the constellation
    Orion? What was your favoirte movie that you made?

    June 1, 2010 at 11:47 pm | Reply
  37. LH

    Hello,

    Tell me your motto which guide you in life, what would you advise those they pursue their dream?

    June 2, 2010 at 1:53 am | Reply
  38. steve

    Morgan,

    You are the best actor in all of Hollywood. You cross gender lines. You are a gift to all of us.

    I was wondering, what is your favorite movie, and what is your favorite movie that you were in????

    June 2, 2010 at 1:57 am | Reply
  39. Liz

    Dear Mr. Freeman,

    You have one of the most calming and pleasant voices I've ever heard in my life. I could listen to you speak for hours, you're a wonderful narrator and a heartfelt actor, it is truly an absolute joy following your career throughout the years.

    My questions are:
    a) When you look back on your life, do you ever regret not doing something? Was there a path untaken so to speak?

    b) What are the ambitions and goals you wish to fulfill at this stage of your life and career?

    I wish you continued success and above all health and happiness. You are one of those extraordinary people that project serenity and joy without even knowing it.
    Thank you for that (-:

    June 2, 2010 at 2:03 am | Reply
  40. christopher davis

    hi i am from Barbados and i just wanted to say Mr Freeman it's always a joy to watch any movie that you are in,,you are an excellent actor > the academy should of given you more awards you do deserve them>>hope you make plenty more movies<<thanks

    June 2, 2010 at 2:11 am | Reply
  41. Maño

    Dear Mr Freeman,

    Beyond your histrionic attributes and your beautiful voice, I admire most, the insightful approach and the meaning you give to each word you express. Your narrations are very visuals. To some extent, your interpretation is the message.

    I wonder, how do you get to the peaceful state of mind that come across in your deliveries. Are you a religious person? Do you activate any preset secret code for each state of mide?

    God bless you, and thak you for sharing your gift with us.

    Sincerely yours,

    Manuel Torres
    San Juan, Puerto Rico

    June 2, 2010 at 3:12 am | Reply
  42. CAMPBELL

    Scotsman living in Thailand:

    What effect did Ray Charles have on modern day african americans. Would BO be president if it were not for him and his ilk?

    June 2, 2010 at 3:25 am | Reply
  43. Sherry Lind

    My son received his Eagle Scout in December and I mailed you a request for a congratulatory letter for him in October. He never received any response. Would you be able to send a congratulatory letter to him. He and his buddies used to have "Morgan Freeman" night at the movies (rentals) at our house during their senior year of HS. They are all very big fans. Thank you.

    June 2, 2010 at 4:00 am | Reply
  44. Stuart

    Hi Mr. Freeman,

    I am a 25 year old fan from San Diego. To me, you have the most iconic voice in America, and I was wondering who you feel has an iconic voice?

    Thank you.

    June 2, 2010 at 4:23 am | Reply
  45. Sayan Mitra

    Dear Sir,
    What is your favourite brand of cars?

    Sayan Mitra,
    Kolkata,
    West Bengal,
    INDIA.

    June 2, 2010 at 4:46 am | Reply
  46. Paul Lowe

    I live in Cologne Germany.
    Mr. Morgan, does the thought of being predestined ever occur to you.
    Not that everything you do is predestined, but that some major things in your life probably were. Your resemblance to Nelson Mandela, was it by chance? Mr. Mandela was destined for greatness, and you portrayed him excellently. It was like a "tailor-made" performance.

    June 2, 2010 at 6:30 am | Reply
  47. Rommel Esteban

    Did you ever consider directing movies? Is that something that interest you and plan to do in the future?

    From Rommel in Penang, Malaysia

    June 2, 2010 at 6:34 am | Reply
  48. Paul Lowe

    I live in Cologne Germany.
    Mr. Freeman, does the thought of being predestined ever occur to you.
    Your resemblance to Mr. Nelson Mandela, who is a man of greatness, – do you think it was by chance or predestined? Thanks.

    June 2, 2010 at 7:59 am | Reply
  49. Colin Glassborow, Albury, NSW, Australia.

    Hi Morgan, I really love the power of your work. Your manner is that of being humble in your movies, and I guess that is what your personal lifestyle is. Congratulations on all of your achievements, so far.

    Simple question...when are you coming back to visit us in Australia?

    June 2, 2010 at 10:18 am | Reply
  50. Kenneth Sullivan

    Mr. Freeman,

    I am a fan of yours and would like to know your opinion on Christianity.

    Here are a few questions:

    Do you believe in Jesus Christ as your lord and Saviour?

    Are you born again?

    Is Jesus Christ the lord of your life?

    Thank you for your time and I will pray for you.

    God bless you

    Sincerely,

    Kenneth Sullivan

    Inchon, Republic of Korea

    June 2, 2010 at 10:35 am | Reply
  51. Samuel Weeks

    HI Morgan
    You have one of the unique voices in Hollywood. I'd like to know how you think your voice has impacted on your career?

    June 2, 2010 at 11:04 am | Reply
  52. Patty T

    Mr. Freeman,
    I am wondering who was your insperation for the character you played in Driving Miss Daisy? You talked and acted so much like my Grandfather who was from Oklahoma it was unreal. I have enjoyed your work throughout the years...Thanks for putting in such a beautiful effort into your work.
    Patty, OKC, Oklahoma

    June 2, 2010 at 11:06 am | Reply
  53. Rose S. From Manila

    Hello Mr. Freeman (or should I say Morgan?)!

    You've had to fill big shoes in some of the roles you've played in the past, among which include the (first!) African-American U.S. president and Nelson Mandela– and who could forget?– God.

    Great iconic figures– how do you respond when you get offered such roles? How close–or far–are they from the real you? Any unhealthy superiority complexes you've developed over the years playing these icons–or worse, any insecurities that have popped up?

    Thanks, and cheers,

    Rose S. from Manila

    June 2, 2010 at 11:14 am | Reply
  54. lee

    Mr. Freeman,
    To hear your voice just enough to make my heart melt!! i just love your voice, you are a true natural actor! keep it up mr. Freeman.

    June 2, 2010 at 11:15 am | Reply
  55. Super Rog

    My favorite movie of yours is “Redemption.” It says volumes about who you are. With every movie you make you interject the persona of calm and cool. It must come from somewhere in your life. Could it be from all your sailing experience? The dictionary defines sailing as seemingly effortless motion. That only part of the time. The other time spent on the water is making good decisions in times of peril. I’d crew with you any day. BTW, you would have made a great fighter pilot.

    June 2, 2010 at 12:40 pm | Reply
  56. Sultan Ameer from Karachi, Pakistan

    Hello Mr. Freeman, huge fan. Name two directors, one from past and one currently working, you wish or want to work with.

    June 2, 2010 at 4:28 pm | Reply
  57. Ademola

    Hi Mr Freeman. Have you ever tried to find out where your ancestral origin is? ...i mean which particular country in African did you descend from?

    June 3, 2010 at 8:39 pm | Reply
  58. baggio joseph emma

    MR freeman i would like to know the time you joined acting how easy or how hard was it . the time of racism a black man come up from no were i would honorably say thank you and keep the good spirit baggio joseph emma kampala uganda

    June 8, 2010 at 8:05 am | Reply
  59. Vern Holybee

    Mr. Freeman,
    I have had experiences that proved to me there is a god and he put into every human being a part of his self. One of these items is what we call a soul. The other part that he put into each of us is the "subconscious" mind through which we talk to him and he talks to us as well we can talk to other souls and they can talk to us. I will not go into any more detail unless it is requested.

    June 10, 2010 at 3:30 am | Reply

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