Philip Michael Thomas

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For the 19th century American politician, see Philip Francis Thomas.
Philip Michael Thomas
Born (1949-05-26) May 26, 1949 (age 66)
Columbus, Ohio, U.S.
Occupation Actor, musician
Years active 1972-2006

Philip Michael Thomas (born May 26, 1949) is an American actor. Thomas' most famous role is that of detective Ricardo Tubbs on the hit 1980s TV series Miami Vice. His first notable roles were in Coonskin (1975) and opposite Irene Cara in the 1976 film Sparkle. After his success in Miami Vice, Thomas appeared in numerous made-for-TV movies and advertisements for telephone psychic services. He served as a spokesperson for cell phone entertainment company Nextones, and supplied the voice for the character Lance Vance on the video games Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories.

Early life[edit]

Thomas's father is African American and his mother of Irish and German descent. Went to east high school[dead link][1][2]


Miami Vice[edit]

Thomas played the role of Ricardo Tubbs, an ex-NYPD police officer from the Bronx who came to Miami seeking revenge on the person who killed his brother Rafael Tubbs. In Miami he encounters another undercover cop, Sonny Crockett, who is coincidentally looking for the same person.

Thomas coined the acronym "EGOT", meaning "Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony", in reference to his plans for winning all four.[3] He has not, as yet, been nominated for any of these awards, but has received a People's Choice Award and a Golden Globe nomination.[citation needed]

Psychic Reader's Network[edit]

In 1994 Thomas signed an agreement with Florida-based Psychic Reader's Network (later known as Traffix, Inc.) to become the spokesman for the Philip Michael Thomas Psychic Connection. He appeared in television ads and claimed to have met the planet's premier psychics through his "world travels". He dressed similarly to his Miami Vice alter ego, even opening the ads with the phrase, "From Miami Vice to world advice!"

Traffix replaced Thomas with Miss Cleo. Thomas sued, alleging breach of contract, and won. In 2002 a New York arbitrator awarded Thomas $1.48 million for improper use of his name and likeness and an additional $780,000 in interest.[citation needed]

Nash Bridges[edit]

In 1997, Thomas was reunited with Don Johnson in the police drama Nash Bridges. He played Cedrick "Rick" Hawks, a U.S. Postal Inspector from Miami visiting Bridges (Johnson) in San Francisco. His first appearance was in the episode "Wild Card", and his second and final appearance was in the episode "Out of Miami", aired in 2001 during the program's final season.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City[edit]

He performed a voice-over in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (2002) (VG) as Lance Vance, a main character who is trying to avenge his brother, Victor Vance's death. He reprised the voice-over role in the prequel Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (2006) (VG) which details Lance's arrival in Vice City, his business with drugs, and his relationship with his brother.

Music career[edit]

In 1985, Thomas released a music album titled "Living the Book of My Life" album under his own record label called Spaceship Records.[4] It sold poorly and failed to produce a hit single. Thomas performed the title song of his album during the 1985 Miami Vice episode, "The Maze." The episode "Trust Fund Pirates" featured another of his songs, "La Mirada". Thomas' Miami Vice costar Don Johnson recorded an album shortly afterward titled Heartbeat. Although Johnson's album was more successful (producing a top 5 single), both albums are considered prime examples of the hubris of successful performers.[5]

Thomas followed up in 1988 with a second album, Somebody. It also failed to produce a hit and sold poorly. In 1993, Thomas teamed with Kathy Rahill to compose "My, My, Miam...i", which was chosen as the city of Miami's theme song.[6] That same year, Thomas teamed with Jamaican fitness instructor Sandi Morais to compose songs for a family-friendly musical titled Sacha, which enjoyed runs in south Florida and New York.[7] The two formed the Magic Cookie Production Company. Thomas produced the music for Morais' fitness videos in 2001 and 2006.[citation needed]

Thomas created a music video called "Just the Way I Planned It". He was in the original San Francisco cast of Hair, and played the alto saxophone in several episodes of Miami Vice.[citation needed]



Video games[edit]



  1. ^ "Philip Michael Thomas Biography". Yahoo! Movies. Archived from the original on May 1, 2007. 
  2. ^ Zoglin, Richard (September 16, 1985). "Cool Cops, Hot Show". Time (Time Inc.). Retrieved 2007-11-02. 
  3. ^ Tim Long (February 26, 2008). "The Oscars: Where Is the Love for Philip Michael Thomas?". Vanity Fair. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ Andrew Stuttaford. "Something in the Air". National Review. Retrieved 2015-08-03. 
  6. ^ "Thomas' Music Entry". Sandi Morais Online. Retrieved 2007-04-13. 
  7. ^ "Sacha on Broadway". Sandi Morais Online. Retrieved 2007-04-13. 

External links[edit]