Here are 7 Middle Eastern actors who could play Aladdin
By: Leyal Khalife
Four months into the official announcement, Disney still can’t seem to finalize the cast for its upcoming live-action film, Aladdin.
Just this week, a journalist at the Hollywood Reporter explained that the entertainment conglomerate has had difficulty “finding a male lead in his 20s who can act and sing.”
Of course, following the news, many claimed that Disney was just using that as an excuse to cover up for its potential hiring of white-actors rather than hire a full Middle Eastern cast as initially announced.
Well, if that’s the case, here’s a list of 7 Middle Eastern male actors Disney could consider for the role.
And yes, some may not be in their 20s … but Hollywood should seriously revise its obsession with youth, no?
1. Lebanese-Australian Firass Dirani
The Lebanese-Australian actor was born in 1984 and has since made a name for himself in Hollywood.
Dirani appeared in Power Rangers Mystic Force, The Combination, Hacksaw Ridge, among many others.
He’s played Justin Baynie in the TV series ‘House Husbands’ since 2012.
2. Palestinian Youssef Erakat
Better known as FOUSEY, Youssef Erakat is a Palestinian-American YouTuber who recently made his big screen debut in Tyler Perry’s latest film Boo! A Madea Halloween.
3. Saudi Badr al-Zidane
Saudi TV host Badr Al-Zidane has been working in the television and radio industry for years.
Hollywood would definitely do the 30-year-old justice.
4. Turkish Burak Özçivit
Born in 1984, Özçivit’s career took off with the TV series Eksi 18. He’s since become one of the biggest on-screen actors in Turkish series.
Hollywood needs this actor!
5. Egyptian Ahmed Magdy
Upcoming Egyptian actor Ahmed Magdy has gained major publicity this year after starring in multiple Ramadan TV series – including the hit show Le A3la Se3ir.
The 31-year-old actor was born to an Algerian mother and an Egyptian father (director Magdy Ahmed Ali).
6. Iranian Shahab Hosseini
Iranian actor and director Shahab Hosseini is mostly known for his collaborations with Iranian writer and director Asghar Farhadi in the 2008 film About Elly, the 2011 film A Separation and most recently The Salesman (2016).
7. Lebanese-Canadian Jade Hassouné
Jade Hassouné is a Lebanese born-Canadian actor and producer known for his role as Prince Ahmed Al Saeed in Heartland and Meliorn in Shadowhunters.
He also took on a supporting role in Cyberbully (2011) and Brick Mansions (2014).