The son of burlesque entertainer, Gypsy Rose Lee, Erik was named "Erik Lee Kirkland" at birth and believed his father was Lee's then-husband, Alexander Kirkland. It wasn't until he was 17 years old that Erik learned that his father was actually Otto Preminger. Years later, in 1967, Otto contacted Erik and the two first met. Erik began working for Otto as a story editor. In 1971, Preminger legally adopted Erik. [1]

 

During the filming of Skidoo in 1968, Harry Nilsson met and befriended, Erik Preminger.[2]