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Mike Epps - The Honeymooners

 

The Diva's interview with
Mike Epps
One of the Stars of
The Honeymooners (2005)

 

 

 


 


3BC:
We’re having a hard time trying to figure out how Ralph and Ed ended up with you guys.

Mike:

3BC:
Can you tell us anything about the Richard Pryor project?

Mike:
Yes, I'm doing the shit.

3BC:
How'd that come about?

Mike:
I went up to meet with his wife. He had a birthday. She had me meet him a couple more times. Before we knew it, she was like 'Richard honey, he's the one doing your movie, this is Mike.' I'm like shit, I am? Uh oh.

3BC:
So they decided they wanted to do it upon meeting you?

Mike:
No, no. They were doing it anyway. They was waiting on that dude to pop in the door who could do it. Waiting on that.

3BC:
How'd you truly get along with that dog?

Mike:
That dog was...I love dogs. That damn greyhound. Shit. He wasn't a Doberman. I'll tell you that. He didn't listen. They're greyhounds, man. Their brains are kinda small. They're sweet dogs. I don't treat no animals bad. The only animal I don't like is that mouse in my house. I can't catch that little bastard.

3BC:
Peanut butter!

Mike:
Peanut butter? This little mouse I got is the smartest damn...

3BC:
: Where do you live? That you still have to deal with rodents?

Mike:
On Mulholland. There's a mouse in the back. My buddy sprayed it with a spray gun. He got red on it. He look like a blood, like a gang member.

3BC:
Back to the movie - How many dogs did they use?

Mike:
They had four of the same kind of damn dogs. They were hard-headed as hell.

3BC:
Did you watch "The Honeymooners" before or after you got the role?

Mike:
I watched it after I got the role. I'm not old enough to say that I grew up watching it. Now if you said "Good Times," I watched that shit everyday. I watched a hundred episodes of ["The Honeymooners."] I glimpsed it.

3BC:
How'd you get the role?

Mike:
Paramount Pictures was all in doing re-makes. They looked at John Goodman at first. I don't know where the idea came from. Someone said 'let's put some flava in the neighbor. Let's dip it in chocolate and see what it'll do.' I did this movie 'The Fighting Temptations.' Some exec saw it and said he can play Norton. They had Cedric already attached.

3BC:
Did you ad-lib? Did you have a great time?

Mike:
Hells yeah, we had a great time. We didn't ad-lib all the time man. The movie was a story-driven movie. The majority was we're going to keep what's on paper. Some of the things needed to remain so the story made sense.

3BC:
Can you tell us more about yourself?

Mike:
I basically stayed in my own world. I became a student of the business. I understood early on that this wasn't an overnight business. Eddie Murphy and Chris Tucker got action right off the top. But you got a guy like me, I'm in the business, I'm good but I need nurturing in other areas of my life, my personal life. I've always been dealing with life skills. It's like two show businesses. You're dealing with your life. You're trying to live and be an entertainer. It can be quite hard. The journey is long. You automatically become a student of it.

3BC:
Have you succeeded?

Mike:
Yeah, I've grown. That's why I've had these opportunities.

3BC:
You mentioned Chris Tucker. What was it like taking over the "Friday" movies for him?

Mike:
Oh man. You're talking to a guy who didn't graduate. I got an eighth grade education. I grew up with eight brothers and sisters on welfare. From the gutter. It was like thank you. I'm glad for the opportunity. If I don't get more than this, it was more than I thought I would do.

3BC:
What about doing stand-up?

Mike:
I moved from Indiana in '92. I worked in a sewer in Atlanta. My auntie put me in the fucking sewer. I couldn't do it for more than a week. I thought I'd be driving a sanitation truck around. Then I said I gotta go to Hollywood or New York. I said I'm going to New York because I'm a little green. If I go to New York and live in New York, by the time I get to Hollywood, I'm going to be a beast. I went to New York, watched Dave Chappelle. I think I must've turned in a hundred headshots and tapes. I was making money off "Def Comedy Jam." That was my break. That was a show to give urban comedians a chance to release their jokes and shit. That's what broke Chris Tucker. That's what broke Bernie Mac. That's what broke Cedric The Entertainer. That show right there built a chitlin circuit. I made a living off doing that. Ice Cube set me with an audition. I've been rolling ever since.

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