Who is Michael Rainey Jr?
A young actor who rose to prominence after his role as Tariq St. Patrick in the series “Power”, and its spin-off entitled “Power Book II: Ghost”, Michael Rainey Junior, was born under the zodiac sign of Virgo on 22 September 2000, in Louisville, Kentucky USA; he holds American nationality and his ethnicity is of mixed African-American and Jamaican descent.
Besides the mentioned role, Michael has 10 acting credits to his name, with some of his most notable roles being in movies such as “Lee Daniels’ The Butler”, “LUV” and “Barbershop: The Next Cut”.
Early life, family, and education
Michael was one year old when his parents, Shauna Small and Michael Rainey Senior, moved with him to Brooklyn, New York, where they raised him as their only child.
His parents recognized his acting talent from an early age, thus besides school plays, Michael started auditioning for movies and series.
He attended a local high school, and upon matriculating in 2018, he didn’t enroll in college but pursued his acting career.
Roles in movies
Michael made his acting debut in 2010, portraying Charlie in the Italian-English movie “Un Altro Mondo”, also starring Silvio Muccino and Isabella Ragonese, followed by his role as Woody in the 2012 movie “LUV”, a crime drama that follows the story of an 11-year-old and his uncle, an ex-convict, portrayed by Common.
In 2013, Michael was seen as 8-year-old Cecil Gaines in the biographical drama “Lee Daniels’ The Butler”, starring Forest Whitaker, John Cusack and Oprah Winfrey, followed by his role as Lawrence in the TV movie “Second Chance Christmas” in 2014.
Two years later, Michael was cast to play Jalen in “Barbershop: The Next Cut”, alongside Ice Cube, Anthony Anderson and Regina Hall, and he was next seen starring in the 2018 movies “Amateur” and “211”, which were his most recent film roles.
Roles in series
Michael made his first television appearance portraying Michael Burst in the popular comedy crime drama series “The Orange Is the New Black”, which had 150 award nominations and won 53, including four Primetime Emmys. Although the series was broadcast until 2019, Michael’s character was seen in only seven episodes, from 2013 until 2015.
In 2014, he was cast to play Tariq St. Patrick in “Power”, also starring Omari Hardwick, Naturi Naughton and Lela Loren; the sixth season was the last, as the series ended in 2020, but Michael reprised his role in the spin-off from the series, entitled “Power Book II: Ghost”, and the stars of the show are Gianni Paolo and Shane Johnson.
In his interview for Insider, Michael spoke about his role: ‘It’s the same character, but a way different role, so I was just really reading my scripts, trying to get into that space of Tariq becoming the man of the house now.’
He added that he felt like blessing the fact that this spin-off is the only show with a young African-American man in a leading role, and that he’s thrilled to be an inspiration to those young people who watch him, which is currently airing on StarzPlay.
Love life and relationships
There have been various rumors both concerning Michael’s love life and his sexual orientation, however, he denied that he’s gay, and posted a photo featuring himself and his then-girlfriend, Eva Apio, with whom he dated from 2019 until 2020.
Eva is a Ugandan model who lives in England, and is represented by Storm Models; she is very popular among young girls, and her Instagram account has been followed by over 850,000 people.
After Michael and Eva broke up, some rumors started saying that he’s dating his co-star from “Power Book II: Ghost”, Paige Hurd, however, the two denied these assumptions, saying that they are just close friends.
As of April 2022, it seems that Michael is single, hasn’t been married or engaged, and doesn’t have children.
Hobbies and other interests
One of Michael’s favorite hobbies is playing basketball, and when he was starring as Terron Forte in the Netflix movie “Amateur”, which follows the story of a young basketball future star, Michael showed his skills. He’s a big fan of the New York’s basketball teams the Knicks and the Brooklyn Nets.
Besides playing sports, he takes care of his body by working out at the gym three to four days per week, and in his spare time, he likes to play video games.
He supports an Indiana-based organization Find and Feed, that takes care of homeless people, and during the Christmas holidays, Michael was seen buying coats and jackets, which he gave to people living on the streets, while he was also seen buying food for those in need.
Michael is an animal lover, with dogs being his favorites, and he enjoys spending time with his two terriers.
He likes listening to music – his favorite musician is 50 Cent (real name Curtis James Jackson III), who is an executive producer of the series “Power”, while he also starred in the series portraying Kanan Stark, and Michael was so happy when he realized that he will be working with his idol from childhood.
Michael is active on his Instagram account, which has been followed by over 2.5 million people; he mostly posts about his work, but you can also see some photos featuring his everyday life.
Age, height, and net worth
This young 21-year-old actor has black hair and brown eyes; he weighs around 150lbs (68kgs) and is 5ft 8ins (1.73m) tall.
According to sources, when Michael began working for the series “Power” his salary per episode was about $20,000, and since his role grow, and became one of the leads, it was reported that his salary was around $45,000 per episode. When he started filming for the sequel “Power Book II: Ghost”, according to Express, his salary is now $100,000 per episode.
As of April 2022, Michael’s net worth has been estimated at least $1.5 million.