Dec. 29th, 1974
Harlem, New York City, New York, USA
5' 10 1/2"
Mekhi Phifer's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Born and raised in New York, Phifer's acting career began when he auditioned at an open casting call for director Spike Lee's Clockers (1995) and was selected for the leading role. Working alongside Harvey Keitel and Delroy Lindo, he garnered critical acclaim for his compelling performance as Strike, a young New Jersey drug dealer involved in a murder cover-up. Following his impressive screen debut, he appeared in the comedy spoof High School High (1996). In the Columbia/Tristar thriller I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998), he co-starred with Jennifer Love Hewitt and Freddie Prinze Jr. He also starred in Soul Food (1997), 20th Century Fox's film that starred Vanessa Williams (VII), Vivica A. Fox and Nia Long. In 2002, Phifer starred as Future, opposite Eminem, Brittany Murphy and Kim Basinger in Curtis Hanson's critically acclaimed film, 8 Mile (2002), as well as in the Miramax feature Paid in Full (2002), directed by Charles Stone III. In June, he was honored by the American Black Film Festival, receiving the organization's "Rising Star" Award. Phifer also recently appeared in the feature film O (2001), where he starred opposite Julia Stiles and Josh Hartnett. Based on William Shakespeare (I)'s Othello, he portrayed Odin, the captain of a champion high school basketball team whose best friend becomes jealous of his relationship with his girlfriend. In addition to his escalating film career, Mr. Phifer added to his growing list of television credits a starring role on the Emmy Award winning series, "ER" (1994) as Dr. Gregory Pratt, for which he recently received a NAACP Image Award Nomination. Mekhi Phifer's other television credits include leading roles in MTV's highly rated film Carmen: A Hip Hopera (2001) (TV), in which he did all his own rap work and starred opposite Beyoncé Knowles. He appeared in the Emmy award winning HBO Original Movie, A Lesson Before Dying (1999) (TV) with Don Cheadle and Cicely Tyson, where his subtle performance as a man on death row won rave reviews and also earned him an NAACP Image Award Nomination. He tackled the challenging role of NFL Hall of Famer Gale Sayers in the ABC television special Brian's Song (2001) (TV) and appeared in the celebrated HBO Original Film The Tuskegee Airmen (1995) (TV). Phifer has also made guest appearances on the popular police dramas "Homicide: Life on the Street" (1993) and "New York Undercover" (1994). Phifer recently completed work on Universal's Honey (2003), starring alongside Jessica Alba. He can also be seen in the Universal remake of the 1978 horror classic Dawn of the Dead (2004), starring Ving Rhames and Sarah Polley (I), and Slow Burn (2005) opposite Ray Liotta.
- First name is pronounced "Meck-high"
- Appeared in Vibe magazine for the article "Can't A Brother Get No Love." (August 1999 issue).
- Enjoys going to the rifle ranges around Los Angeles and target shooting to relieve stress and have fun.
- Was originally a rapper signed to Warner Brothers records.
- Was the first choice to play Quincy McCall in _Love & Basketball (2000)_ (qv), but had to drop out due to a schedule conflict and was replaced by 'Omar Epps' (qv).
- Along with the Pennsylvania-based charity organization, The Vine Group, he donated over $100,000 in scholarships, books and computers to Ibadan, Nigeria, where the Mekhi Phifer Education Center will open in 2005 to help poor children get an education.
- Son, Mekhi Thira Phifer, Jr., born 30 October 2007. Mother is fiancée 'Onanong Souratha' (qv).
- Owns an "Athlete's Foot" store franchise, which sells athletic footwear in California. Owns six stores with two of them up and running.