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Manu Tupou

Manu Tupou
Born (1935-01-05)January 5, 1935
Lomaloma, Lau, Fiji
Died June 5, 2004(2004-06-05) (aged 69)
Los Angeles, California, United States
Occupation Actor, Writer, Director, and Teacher

Manu Tupou (January 5, 1935 – June 5, 2004) was an American-based Fijian actor, writer, director, and teacher.


  • Education 1
  • Early life 2
  • The Actors Studio 3
  • New Era Acting Technique 4
  • Quotes 5
  • Legacy 6
  • Career 7
    • Broadway & National Tours 7.1
    • Film 7.2
    • Television 7.3
  • References 8
  • External links 9


He trained for 15 years in New York under the finest teachers: Lee Strasberg, Stella Adler, Uta Hagen, Harold Clurman, Sanford Meisner. He was an Honors graduate of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts (New York) and a Senior Life Member of the Actors Studio (New York and Hollywood).[1] He received a B.A. from both the University of Hawaii and the University of London.[2] He was one of the most studied scholars and researchers of the dramatic arts.

Early life

Manu Tupou was born on Lee Strasberg.

The Actors Studio

In New York, he studied at Carnegie Hall at the Actors Studio with the likes of Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, and Shelley Winters. It was here began to develop himself as an artist. He began working on movies and television shows and even Broadway. It was here in New York that he studied with the greats of the time, later to develop his own technique. This technique was developed from what he learned and the mistakes he felt he made from using sense memory, which he felt damaged his sanity due to the use of past moments of pain and unconsciousness.

New Era Acting Technique

[3] Gleaning true knowledge and workable applications from his extensive educational experience in the arts, Manu Tupou formulated his discoveries into the simplistic, but revolutionary, "New Era Acting Technique" (NEAT). The hallmark of the NEAT technique is its respect for the sanctity and sanity of the individual artist-upgrading the artist's creation away from the limitations of memory and recalled past experiences, into a more redeeming and uplifting "slice of life," happening here and now in present time. This was the major difference in approach from the way his mentor Lee Strasberg taught Tupou and his classmates. One of the main philosophies behind the technique is that each talent is a unique essence unto itself- and also the most important, single, irreducible creative element in any production. Also equally unique (almost without exception), each talent observed will be found to have his own "working problem" as a creative artist. Small or large, the working problem can effectively sabotage any actor's creative abilities, and hence, their career. Tupou an important aspect was not only to correctly and accurately identify the working problem of an actor but more importantly providing a workable route by which such problems could be overcome through understanding and improved artistic ability.


"Your only obligation is to your art and you know it." --Manu Tupou[4]


Actor Corin Nemec said of Tupou:

"I studied with Manu Tupou, He had his own theater company called the

From the late 1970s, he taught acting at the American Repertory Company, where he focused intensely on each individual student, as he never let the class get larger than 12 students at a time. He wanted to have the luxury of giving anywhere to 15 and sometimes even up to one hour of feedback and critiques. This was highly effective, ensuring the next time that student came to class and put up his work, it was taken to the next level. Tupou trained Eric Roberts, Ernie Reyes Jr., Calvin Levels, Santino Ramos, Jerri Manthey, Arash Dibazar, among others.


Broadway & National Tours [5]

Film [6]



  1. ^ Garfield, David (1980). "Appendix: Life Members of The Actors Studio as of January 1980". A Player's Place: The Story of The Actors Studio. New York: MacMillan Publishing Co., Inc. p. 280.  
  2. ^ 'THE MOVIEGOER': "Fijian Noble Stars in New Movie". The Deseret News. May 28, 1970. 8D.
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ IBDb website
  6. ^ IMDb website
  7. ^ IMDb website

External links

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