Friday, July 10, 2015

RIP Omar Sharif

Remembering Omar Sharif,
may he rest in peace....
Born Michel Demitri Chalhoub, (April 10, 1932 – July 10, 2015) he was an Egyptian actor. The assumed surname Sharif means "noble" in Arabic. His films included Lawrence of Arabia (1962), Doctor Zhivago (1965) and Funny Girl (1968). He was nominated for an Academy Award and won three Golden Globe Awards.
With Barbra Streisand in Funny Girl

Doctor Zhivago

Lawrence of Arabia
His Acting Career

In 1953, Sharif began his acting career with a role in Sira` Fi al-Wadi. He quickly rose to stardom, appearing in over 20 Egyptian productions, including Ayyamna el helwa with singer Abdel Halim Hafez, La anam in 1958, Sayedat el kasr in 1959 and the Anna Karenina adaptation Nahr el hub in 1961. He also starred with his wife, Egyptian actress Faten Hamama, in several movies as romantic leads.
Sharif's first English-language film was in the role of Sharif Ali in David Lean's Lawrence of Arabia in 1962. This performance earned him a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination and a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture. Following this breakthrough role, Sharif played a variety of characters, including a Spanish priest in Behold a Pale Horse (1964), a Yugoslav wartime patriot in The Yellow Rolls-Royce (1964) and the Mongolian conqueror in Genghis Khan (1965). In the same year, Sharif reunited with Lean to play the title role in Doctor Zhivago, an adaptation of Boris Pasternak's novel.
Over the next few years, Sharif starred as a German military officer in The Night of the Generals, as Crown Prince Rudolf of Austria in Mayerling and as Che Guevara in Che!. Sharif was also acclaimed for his portrayal of Nicky Arnstein, husband to Fanny Brice in Funny Girl, though some thought he was miscast as a New York Jewish gambler. His decision to work with costar Barbra Streisand angered Egypt's government at the time due to Streisand's support for the state of Israel. Streisand herself responded with "You think Cairo was upset? You should've seen the letter I got from my Aunt Rose!".  Sharif reprised the role in the film's sequel, Funny Lady in 1975.
Among his other films were the western Mackenna's Gold, as an outlaw opposite Gregory Peck; the thriller Juggernaut, which co-starred Richard Harris, and the romantic drama The Tamarind Seed, co-starring Julie Andrews, directed by Blake Edwards. Sharif also contributed comic cameo performances in Edwards' The Pink Panther Strikes Again and in the 1980 spy-film spoof Top Secret!
In 2003, he received acclaim for his role in the French-language film adaptation of the novel Monsieur Ibrahim et les fleurs du Coran, as a Muslim Turkish merchant who becomes a father figure for a Jewish boy. ~Wikipedia

1 comment: