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Rami Malek: ‘I'll Never Play an Arab Terrorist’

Rami Malek: ‘I'll Never Play an Arab Terrorist’

Friday, 5 July, 2019 - 06:00
Rami Malek accepts his award at the 76th Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California. Reuters file photo
New York - Asharq Al-Awsat

The US actor of Egyptian ancestry, Rami Malek, has revealed that he needed to be reassured his character would not be linked to an "Arab terrorist" before accepting his role as the villain in the new Bond film.

Malek, who received an Oscar earlier this year for his portrayal of Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody, admitted that he had to think twice before agreeing to take on his next role.

The Mirror cited Malek, 38, saying that “he needed a guarantee from the American film director Cary Fukunaga that his character would not be an Arabic-speaking terrorist," stressing that "he will never play an Arab terrorist."

"It's a great character and I'm very excited. But that was one thing that I discussed with Cary. I said that we cannot identify him with any act of terrorism reflecting an ideology or a religion. That's not something I would entertain. But that was clearly not his vision. So he's a very different kind of terrorist," the American-Egyptian actor said.

Rami is playing the primary villain in the latest Bond 007 also starred by Daniel Craig. The new movie is set to be displayed in April 2020.

Rami also admitted that as an actor of Middle Eastern heritage, Hollywood was quick to typecast him into particular stereotypical roles.

However after playing the role of the suicide bomber in the action drama 24, Rami decided that he needed to draw a line with his agents and refuse to play Arab or Middle Eastern characters in a negative light.

He added: '"In the past it was like, 'Oh well, he's an acceptable terrorist! But after I did that I said to myself 'This is not how I want it'."

Rami's role in the TV drama Mr. Robot made him the best candidate for the Freddie Mercury role.

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