Some of Michael's favorite actors are Sean Penn, Benicio, early Pacino, and John Leguizamo.
Michael's parents are Cindy and Ernie Irby. Michael has two brothers: Ernie and Jason Irby.
Michael attended the College of the Desert (Palm Desert, CA), Orange Coast College (Costa Mesa, CA), and the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.
Michael is good friends with Max Martini, his co-star on The Unit.
Michael is an avid motorcycle rider. He rode in Love Ride 2007 with his co-stars Max Martini and Robert Patrick.
Michael grew up in Cabazon, California.
Michael is an outstanding soccer player, who at one time played in Europe for Team USA.
Michael is married to Susan Matus and has one child.
Michael Irby: (when asked where he liked to disappear) The ocean. I love large bodies of water. I don't care if it's still, running, or crashing. I need to feel small, I guess. I just like that vast space.
Michael Irby: (during an interview on the AIDs crisis) I graduated in 1990 and AIDS organizations were new. HIV was still so hush-hush. In America we try to keep everything a little bit removed. We still whisper about it, 'Oh, he's got AIDS,' rather than, 'Let's talk about this.' I mean, there's millions of people dying in Africa and around the world. Then we have the Pope who just sits there and talks about safe sex like it has something to do with religion. The fact that we live in a world where we can't distribute condoms to make an entire country safe just doesn't make sense. We live in a world where we have all this information and we're just not using it. It's such a contradiction of everything. It trips me out.
Michael Irby: (about his co-star, Max Martini) My best buddy is Max Martini, the redhead. Him and I, we had a mutual friend who we'd worked with a couple years apart. She said, 'I think you guys would totally hit it off.' It took a year and a half for us to hook up but then we went down to the table reading, we figured out who we were and who the mutual friend was and yeah, it's been nonstop ever since. He's got a family too. He's just a real guy. I love everybody but Max for sure, we hang out a lot. I'll know that kid forever.
Michael Irby: (about working on The Unit) I think we all have to stay in shape. They got us a little gym there on set that travels with us in the trailer. I think on our own personal thing too, we're actors and at the end of the day, you've got to try and stay in shape. This is one of those jobs if you weren't in shape, you were definitely going to get in shape. And I think we're all kind of tight right now and everybody feels pretty decent about the way they look. Just being healthy too. It's definitely one of those shows you have to stay healthy because we have late nights and sometimes the sleep schedule gets mixed up and you're eating at weird times. Then all of a sudden you're running through the hills with a gun shooting at people and being shot at. I think you always have to kind of stay ready for this one mentally and physically. You really have to stay in tune, what your body's telling you.
Michael Irby: (when asked how the role of Charles Grey on The Unit came to him) It was right on the tail end of pilot season, I was supposed to be doing Commander in Chief with Rod Lurie. We had worked together on Line of Fire and The Last Castle, we were old buddies. He called me and said he had this great idea about a female President and I thought it sounded fantastic. He put it out there that if something else comes along, he'd like me to take a look at it. I took that to heart and The Unit came up and I found out who was involved with it and hands-down, I was speeding over there! I went in and it was one of those days when everything was lined up. David Mamet came out and asked if I had any questions and tells me, 'Michael, I want you to go in there and tell everyone you don't need this job.' I was like, 'What, What?!' I went in there and kind of said it my own way and I saw him kind of lighten up with me. I was literally driving away, I hadn't even gotten home yet and my manager called and said they wanted to see me again. It was just one of those things, it was all meant to be.
Michael Irby: (when asked if any big name stars had given him advice) [Robert] Redford said something interesting when we were sitting around the 'ole prison yard one day. He was just talking to some of us - it was myself, Mark Ruffalo, Cliff Collins and a lot of up-and-coming actors and he said, 'make sure you got hobbies, make sure you're not living and dying for this thing,' which I believe he meant this thing called the business. The art you can live or die for, but the business is sometimes so fickle. There's really no rhyme or reason sometimes for those who find success or failure in this type of industry.
Michael Irby: (about how he got into acting) As a kid, I dabbled a bit here and there. They were kind of dares when I was a kid. I was a soccer player my whole life and then with a little turn of events, I stopped playing ball. I started taking acting classes and a teacher of mine said, 'you know Mike, I think you could do this for a living.' At the time I didn't realize this was actually something you could do for a living. I was from a small town mentality. I knew there were actors, I just didn't know you could make money doing it. He told me I could go to New York or L.A. to go to school. I decided to move to New York when I was 19 or 20 years old. It was a very wham-bam, fast decision. I didn't tell any family or friends what I was doing. I was known for living on the edge of life.
Michael Irby:(about his character on The Unit) I've turned into the bomb guy...It's great, I'm watching and I'm like, 'Yeah, I believe it.' It's kind of cool.
Michael Irby: (about his character on The Unit) One facet is that I'm not married on the show. I think Grey and myself too...I always bring myself to everything, not that the other guys don't. I think the way the character is written and the direction he's headed, he's a little bit of a question mark and I think I am too in my own life and the way I choose to live it. I think with Grey, you can see some of the other guys are more straight-forward, you can very much see what the mission is, what they are going to accomplish, but Grey steps out of line every now and then, which I find is very fun to do with the character. That's definitely a unique characteristic of Grey's. He's not afraid to go one way or another.
Michael Irby: I love to cook, I'm the family chef. My wife loves it! I like to eat, I'm not picky, I'll eat anything under the sun, I just like the certain way it's made and prepared. She was a vegetarian when we met, I'm a meat and potatoes type of guy and I had to widen my variety of cooking. It's so much fun, I love cooking! I get to think about it all day. From the moment I wake up, I think about what I'm going to make for dinner. I play guitar. I have a son, that's a hobby in itself. I found some time to make time for myself. I've always been writing, writing poetry, the spoken word. I make time for my friends because friends are really hard to come by here in L.A. It's really important, no matter how much you're working, that core group of friends, whether you're all working or not working, to try to stay in touch with it all.