Hailing from Indianapolis, Mike Epps started his career on stage as a comedian.
Born into a large family with eight siblings, Epps was the class clown who
decided in his teens to enter a stand-up contest at an Indiana club. His
success on stage gave him the courage to strike out on his own, heading to
Atlanta where he made a name for himself at the Comedy Act Theater. The
owner of the club suggested Epps move to New York to build his act, and
within a week, Epps left for NYC.
He soon fought his way into the Def Comedy Jam, where he excelled and became
a member in 1995. He toured with the group and performed at Laffapalooza
fest and the Comedy Store in L.A.
Following his film debut in Vin Diesel's Strays in 1997, he was spotted by
Ice Cube at the Comedy Store. The discovery led to his second feature
credit, Next Friday (2000), playing Day-Day. This exposure lead to
roles in bigger films like Dr. Dolittle 2 (voicing
Sonny) (2001), The Fighting Temptations (2003), The Honeymooners (2005), Resident Evil: Extinction (2007), Jumping the Broom (2011) and Sparkle (2012).