Michael Carmichael is born in Memphis, Tennessee to Doris and William Carmichael. His father immigrated to the United States from Canada at the age of 16 without anything but a desire for the freedom to pursue his career in theatrical management and the movie business. His mother graduated from high school in Moscow, Tennessee then moved with her family to Memphis. Michael and his brother grew up in a series of cities: Cincinnati, Tulsa, Oklahoma City and Charlotte, North Carolina.