Irving Rameses "Ving" Rhames (born May 12, 1959) is an American actor best known for his work in Bringing Out the Dead, Pulp Fiction, Baby Boy, Don King: Only in America, and the Mission: Impossible film series.
Rhames was born in New York City, New York, the son of Reather, a homemaker, and Ernest Rhames, an auto mechanic. His parents were raised as sharecroppers in South Carolina. Named after the late NBC journalist, Irving R. Levine, Irving Rhames grew up in Harlem.
A good student, he entered New York's School of Performing Arts, where he discovered his love of acting. After high school, he studied drama at SUNY Purchase. His fellow acting student Stanley Tucci gave him his nickname "Ving". Rhames later transferred to Juilliard, where he began his career in New York theater.