Right On! Digital’s Cynthia Horner got up close and personal with Michael Rainey Jr. for an exclusive convo about his expanded role on “Power Book II: Ghost.” This time around viewers will note that Tariq St Patrick becomes the head of the St. Patrick Clan once his dad Ghost gets murdered and his mom, Tasha, is facing the rap for crime Tariq actually committed. Tariq is on his own, navigating school, hustling and helping the ladies in his family. How he handles the pressure and will he get caught by the authorities remains to be seen.
INTERVIEW BY CYNTHIA HORNER
RIGHT ON! DIGITAL: I was really impressed with your acting skills. I always have been, so I just see a lot of growth. Tell me, what is it like being part of a series that focuses on your specific character?
MICHAEL RAINEY JR.: It’s a lot of work, but it’s amazing. I always wanted to be a main character in a TV show; once I started acting it was the one thing I’ve always wanted to do. So when it was told to me, I was just like I was just like, “wow.” I couldn’t believe it, to be honest. When 50 (Cent) first told me I really didn’t believe him. I thought he was joking with me. I was just like, “whatever,” and then two weeks after that Courtney Kemp told me and I was like “d– ,” it’s real now.
RIGHT ON! DIGITAL: Were you nervous?
MICHAEL RAINEY JR.: I was definitely nervous, but I got kind of used to it within the first week; the cast was very nice and helpful. They made they made it very comfortable for me to get used to being number one on the show.
RIGHT ON! DIGITAL: Obviously it’s more responsibility. Do you second-guess yourself when you’re doing scenes and are you a perfectionist?
MICHAEL RAINEY JR.: I’m a perfectionist when it comes to because everything, honestly, so I’m definitely hard on myself. Sometimes I definitely do second-guess myself, but that’s just a part of growing and maturing in the entertainment business. You know, I just gotta find my confidence. I’m very confident in myself of course, but I just feel like I can always be 10 times better. But 50 and Courtney believed in me to take on the responsibility. I can’t be shy about this; they gave me the responsibility. I got to take it, I got own, it, right?
RIGHT ON! DIGITAL: Well, you’re great. Now on the past seasons of “Power,” you’ve had the bad boy character and you still have that in you, but it seem like you’re a little nicer in this series. How would you describe the development of your character?
MICHAEL RAINEY JR.: I just I feel like Tariq is growing up now. He’s not the same young kid being mad at his parents anymore. He’s not making decisions from just being mad at his parents. Now, he’s making those decisions for the people around him, you know for his grandmother, for his little sister, for Mom. He has to make the right decisions not just for him, but for the people around him.
He’s in a different way. So it’s just part of him growing up. You know, like I said, taking on the big responsibility of being the man of the house now. It’s taking control and being smart about everything he does, so he can’t be the same spiteful kid that he was before.
RIGHT ON! DIGITAL: On the series we’ve glimpsed a few young actresses who have small roles and it just seems like we’re going to be seeing the romantic side of Tariq a little bit more. Details, please!
MICHAEL RAINEY JR.: He’s in college now. So he wants to find that girl that he can trust because he can’t really be himself right now. He can’t really open up to anyone because all the stuff that he’s keeping inside is confidential.
You’ll get more of our interview with Michael Rainey Jr. next week and be sure to hit him up on social media @michaelraineyjr so that he’ll now how much you’re loving his expanded role in the “Power” franchise.
The STARZ Original series “POWER BOOK II: GHOST,” starring Michael Rainey Jr., Naturi Naughton, Mary J. Blige and Cliff “Method Man” Smith, is set to premiere on Sunday, September 6, 2020 at 9 PM ET/PT before moving to its regular timeslot at 8 PM on STARZ in the U.S. and Canada, and day and date on the Starzplay international streaming service around the world. The premiere season for “Ghost” will be split into two parts of five episodes each, with the second half scheduled to air later this year.