Born and raised in New York, Mr. Phifer's acting career began when he auditioned at an open casting call for director Spike Lee's CLOCKERS and was selected for the leading role. Working alongside Harvey Keitel, John Turturro and Delroy Lindo, Mr. Phifer garnered critical acclaim for his compelling performance as Strike, a young New Jersey drug dealer involved in a murder cover-up.
Mr. Phifer's film resume includes a starring role in the remake of the top grossing 1978 horror classic DAWN OF THE DEAD, opposite Sarah Polley and Ving Rhames. In the fall of 2002, Mr. Phifer starred as Future, opposite Eminem, Brittany Murphy and Kim Basinger in Curtis Hanson's critically acclaimed film 8 MILE (Universal), as well as in the Miramax feature PAID IN FULL, directed by Charles Stone. Mekhi Phifer also appeared in the feature film O (Lionsgate), where he starred opposite Julia Stiles and Josh Hartnett. Based on Shakespeare'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 the Columbia/TriStar thriller I STILL KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER, Mr. Phifer co-starred with Jennifer Love Hewitt, Brandy and Freddie Prinze Jr. He also starred in 20th Century Fox's successful family drama SOUL FOOD, opposite Vanessa Williams, Vivica A. Fox and Nia Long. Additional films included HELL'S KITCHEN NYC, , where he played a New York boxer opposite Angelina Jolie; TEARS OF A CLOWN, a romantic comedy; the mystery thriller AN INVITED GUEST, winner of the Audience Award at the 1999 Urbanworld Festival and the Grand Prize at the Acapulco Film Festival; and THE IMPOSTER, with Gary Sinise, Madeline Stowe and Vincent D'Onofrio. In June of 2002, he was honored by the American Black Film Festival, receiving the organization's Rising Star award.
In addition to his film career, in 2002 Mr. Phifer added to his growing list of television credits a starring role on the Emmy-award winning series, ER as Dr. Gregory Pratt for which he has received two NAACP Image Awards (2004 and 2005) for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama series. Mekhi Phifer's other television credits include leading roles in MTV's highly rated film CARMEN: A HIP-HOPERA, in which he did all his own rap work and starred opposite Beyonce Knowles. He appeared in the Emmy Award-winning HBO Original Movie A LESSON BEFORE DYING with Don Cheadle and Cicely Tyson, where his subtle performance as a man on death row won rave reviews and also earned him a NAACP Image Award nomination. He tackled the challenging role of portraying NFL Hall Of Famer Gale Sayers in the ABC television special BRIAN'S SONG and appeared in the celebrated HBO Original Film THE TUSKEGEE AIRMEN. Mr. Phifer has also made guest appearances on the popular police dramas Homicide: Life on the Street and New York Undercover.
In 2007, Phifer along with writer/producer/actor Ronnie Warner have announced the formation of two production companies, Facilitator Films and Facilitator Music. Based out of the Warner Bros. lot in Burbank, California, the company's first project was 2006's comedy film PUFF, PUFF, PASS. The release was acquired by SONY and released on DVD last May. Phifer, who made his directorial debut in the film, also starred alongside Danny Masterson, John C. McGinley, Terry Crews, Ronnie Warner, Darrell Hammond and Mo Collins.
Phifer and Warner have several film projects currently in production under the Facilitator Films banner. They have partnered with Clint Culpepper of Sony Screen Gems to executive produce THIS CHRISTMAS starring Delroy Lindo, Regina King, Nia Long, Loretta Devine, Chris Brown and Idris Elba. The film is set for release in November 2007. They have also partnered with Jeff Clanagan of Universal/Code Black for distribution of theatrical and DVD releases. Facilitator Films is also collaborating with 20th Century Fox on a theatrical release scheduled to start production in March/April 2007.
Phifer and Warner, along with music producer, Todd Mushaw, whose production credits include Kelly Rowland, Dr. Dre, Game, Destiny's Child, also have launched Facilitator Music, and recently signed their first artist Face, a Virginia based rapper.
Mr. Phifer currently resides in Los Angeles.
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Mekhi Phifer Facts
|Birthday||December 24, 1974 (43)|
|Birthplace||Harlem, New York, USA|
|Height||5' 10½" (1m79) How tall is Mekhi Phifer compared to you?|
|The Divergent Series: Insurgent|
|Dawn of the Dead|
|Paid In Full|