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How Tupac Shakur Inspired Michael Rapaport’s Acting

Speaking with DJ King Tutt for KISS 99.3, actor and comedian Michael Rapaport revealed how Tupac Shakur inspired his career.

From Higher Learning, True Romance to Deep Blue Sea, Michael Rapport established himself as an actor in the early nineties. Working with good friend, the late John Singleton, Michael would also work on Poetic Justice.

Although he did not have a huge role in the movie, as he was cast as a dockworker, Michael will never forget the Poetic Justice wrap party. A night where he took part of an iconic photo of himself, John Singleton, Tupac, and Ice Cube.

How Tupac Shakur Inspired Michael Rapaport's Acting
Tupac Shakur, Gridlock’d

Since then, Michael has always had an admiration and respect for Tupac Shakur, who was an actor himself. But, it was a particular Tupac song in which inspired Michael Rapaport, to the point where he would apply it to all of his arts.

“My goal as an actor has always been to try to be real. I’ll tell you something, you brought up Tupac. He has a line in a song called “Str8 Ballin’‘. I swear this is a huge inspiration for me as an actor. He said, ‘You’re f’in with the realest motherf***** alive,” explains Michael Rapaport.

Michael is referring to Tupac’s song “Str8 Ballin’” which was on the Thug Life Volume 1 album released in 1994. “That was one of his things he said a lot in his music. And, for me as an actor, not in real life, cause I’m not trying to be a tough guy. But, as an actor that was always a big inspiration. I’m not the most skilled actor, tactical actor,” said Michael.

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Aside from acting in films and TV series, Michael also does stand up comedy. Currently also on tour with Orlando, Denver, San Diego, and Nashville on the list for upcoming shows. Visit michaelrapaportcomedy.com for tickets and more information.

“My thing is that you could feel me. To be as honest as possible, and to be as genuine with my emotions, and my humor as possible. That’s what I try to do with everything art related, whether it’s acting or stand up comedy,” Michael Rapport tells DJ King Tutt.


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