Ving Rhames

Famous actor/producer Ving Rhames recently sat down with us to discuss his upcoming film Zombie Apocalypse in which he plays the part of ‘Henry’, the leader of a group of people trying to survive a zombie infestation of epic proportions.

Aaron MK: Hello Mr. Rhames. How are you today?

Ving Rhames: Hey, hello!

Aaron MK: As always, we’re really excited for the movie. What can you tell us about Henry and his role in Zombie Apocalypse?

Ving Rhames: I’m kind of the enforcer/major protector of the group. I’m probably the eldest of the group also, so my character has a lot of wisdom. They pair [me and one of the characters] up at times and I take on kind of the prominent lead of the movie as far as protecting [that character] and most of my scenes are with her when they’re not with the group. So, I would basically say I’m the enforcer/protector.

Aaron MK: You’ve been in Dawn of the Dead, and now Zombie Apocalypse, and there are numerous other titles involving zombies on the market. Why do you think that the zombie/horror genre has been so popular for so many decades?

Ving Rhames: Well, for one, it’s interesting. Actually I think if one really does the research on it and you deal with let’s say voodoo or what have you, there has been some evidence of – I don’t want to scare anyone – but of “zombies” existing, or “someone without a heartbeat walking, or moving, or talking or existing.” So I do think there’s still some question marks about it. But the fact that it is a little controversial as far as ‘can a zombie really exist or not?’ It’s just like ghosts. You know, why – well the supernatural and whatever – now these films Paranormal Activity and what have you. I think there is a sense in general where there’s a possibility that a zombie could exist. So I think with that possibility comes intrigue, and I think that’s why this whole genre kind of exists, because there’s a slim possibility that this could happen.

Aaron MK: You’ve been in countless productions since the 1980’s and you remain very prominent in the acting realm. What would you attribute to your ongoing success

Ving Rhames: Well one of the things I tell people is I didn’t choose acting; God chose me to act. Or I may say I didn’t choose acting; acting chose me. So I know I’ve been blessed with a certain talent. I’ve been blessed with good acting teachers and classes and training to become “a relatively good actor.” So, I was able to cultivate whatever gift God blessed me with as far as acting. And I think a lot of times people don’t really – they could have a natural ability, but they don’t really cultivate it. So I think partly – then I think I have to thank performing arts high school and the Julliard School for “giving me tools to allow me to be a versatile actor.” So I feel if you’re versatile, there’s always going to be room for you in this industry versus actors who basically you know, play themselves in every role.

Aaron MK: While we’re on the subject of your many other works; You’ve obviously had a lot of acting projects just in these recent months. Do you think we’ll ever see you in a director’s role?

Ving Rhames: No. I’m not interested in directing. I have produced, which I really enjoy, but directing- I honestly think no. I grew up in a generation of actors and coming from a theatrical background where you really have to know how to act. I think now in Hollywood there are many actors who’ve never done a play, who’ve never really even taken classes. I graduated from The Julliard School- Not saying everyone has to do that, but they don’t really have a trained background. They may have a nice look or a nice body or nice personality. So I think for me, I’m more old-school as far as requirements of an actor. I also think it would probably be difficult for me, with the many people who call themselves actors today, to direct them.

Aaron MK: Okay. Thank you for your time Mr. Rhames!

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