Mekhi Phifer's Reflection on Almost Declining "8 Mile" Role and Insights into Eminem's Acting Exit
Mekhi Phifer, renowned for his role as Future in "8 Mile," delves into exclusive anecdotes from the film set, detailing his connection with Eminem and recalling a memorable studio session listening to the first draft of "Lose Yourself" at 3 AM.
In a comprehensive interview with Vulture magazine, Phifer candidly addresses queries surrounding the making of "8 Mile." The actor begins by confessing his initial reluctance to participate in the project, skeptical about the success of a hip-hop-oriented movie.
Expressing admiration for Eminem's musical prowess, Phifer reveals a lack of awareness regarding the rapper's commitment to acting. In the early 2000s, movies featuring musicians often fell short of expectations, leading Phifer to question the feasibility of a compelling hip-hop film. However, the experience turned out to be a revelation, debunking Phifer's skepticism as Eminem delivered a stellar performance on the cinematic stage.
Reflecting on Eminem's dedication to his newfound craft, Phifer attests to the rapper's seriousness and nervousness, emphasizing the genuine effort Eminem invested in seeking advice and perfecting his acting skills.
Playing best friends in the film, Phifer draws inspiration from Proof's story and personality, even consulting with Proof on the intricacies of hosting rap battles. He goes on to share a unique experience of Eminem involving him in the creative process. Spending five months together, Eminem's commitment to both his music and the movie's soundtrack is highlighted.
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Phifer recalls a moment at 2 or 3 in the morning when Eminem invites him to the studio, revealing a raw, unmixed song where Phifer's name is mentioned. The camaraderie between the two is evident, showcasing the genuine bond forged during their time together.
Addressing Eminem's limited acting pursuits post-"8 Mile," Phifer expresses no surprise, citing Eminem's inclination to march to the beat of his own drum. The actor notes Eminem's introverted nature and the challenges of collaborating with Curtis (50 Cent) due to creative differences. Phifer sheds light on the contrasting dynamics between musicians accustomed to steering their careers and the collaborative nature of film and television.
In essence, Phifer's reflections offer an intimate portrayal of the behind-the-scenes dynamics during the making of "8 Mile," capturing the essence of Eminem's transformation from a celebrated rapper to a dedicated actor.