Performance Date: Sunday, October 12, 2014
Comedian and actor Mike Epps has generated quite a buzz among his peers and within the industry for being one of the funniest comedic actors emerging in the Hollywood spotlight. Mike is currently on his own national comedy tour, “Mike Epps: On the Edge” which is selling out major concert venues across the country. It was recently announced that HBO will develop “The Unsuccessful Thug”, a half-hour comedy series based on Mike’s experiences growing up in Indianapolis and occasionally running afoul of the law. Says Epps in Daily Variety, “I wasn’t cut out to be mean, but I was in a mean world and participating in mean things to survive.” The sitcom will journey Mike’s life as he took on standup comedy on a dare and began to put his bad behavior behind him.
Also on his plate, Mike is scheduled to portray Richard Pryor in the upcoming bio pic of the comedic legend’s life. Mike was personally chosen for the role by Pryor himself, and spent the last year visiting with Richard prior to his recent death. It is with great pride that Mike will take on this role of a lifetime. “I don’t feel pressure from the audience necessarily, I feel pressure for myself to do right for Richard himself.” Mike also recently appeared in Something New .
It is roles such as these that are putting Mike on the road to comedic superstardom Mike is perhaps best known for his roles as “Day-Day” opposite Ice Cube in both Next Friday and Friday After Next. He teamed up again with Ice Cube in New Line’s All About the Benjamins, and went on to star in The Fighting Temptations, Resident Evil 2: Apocalypseand most recently, The Honeymooners, Roll Bounce and Something New.
A native of Indiana, Epps has steadily climbed his way up the stand-up comedy ranks for the last six years. Epps moved to Los Angeles after a successful performance at the 1999 Laffapolooza fest in Atlanta. During a performance at the Comedy Store, Epps caught the attention of Ice Cube, who went on to cast him as his co-star in Next Friday, the highly anticipated sequel to Friday. Epps went on to appear in Bait with Jamie Foxx and had a cameo in How High with Method Man and Redman. He was also heard as the voice of Sonny in Dr. Doolittle 2.
Having grown up between Gary, Indiana where he would spend summers with his grandparents, and Indiananpolis, where he shared a house with eight siblings and mother, Epps quickly became the class cut up in school. Epps admits, “ I was a comedic actor as a kid and didn't know it. But I was practicing it!” It came as no surprise then that by the time he reached his teens Epps decided to enter a stand-up comedy contest at an Indiana club named Seville’s. His success on stage motivated him to strike out on his own, heading to Atlanta where he made a name for himself at the Comedy Act Theatre. The owner of the club encouraged Epps to move to New York to build his act, and within a week, Epps caught a Greyhound bus to the Big Apple at the age of 21.
While breaking into conventional New York City comedy clubs did prove to be challenging, the Def Comedy Jam phenomenon recognized Epps’ talent and by 1995, he wound up on the Def Comedy Jam tour and had starred in two of HBO’s Def Comedy Jam broadcasts. He soon moved to Los Angeles where he landed solidly into the film arena. But Epps hasn’t let go of his first love - stand-up comedy - and manages to hit the stage any down time he has. He also spends time on his charity foundation – the Mike Epps Foundation
Mike Epps currently resides in Los Angeles.