Omar Sharif - Actors, Birthday and Personal Life

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Omar Sharif's Personal Details

Omar Sharif was an Egyptian film star, best known for his performances in both American and British productions

InformationDetail
BirthdayApril 10, 1932
Died onJuly 10, 2015
NationalityEgyptian
FamousFilm & Theater Personalities, Actors
Nick namesOmar el-Sherief
SpousesFaten Hamama
Known asMichel Dimitri Chalhoub
Universities
  • Victoria College
  • Alexandria
  • Cairo University Royal Academy of Dramatic Art
Cause of deathHeart Attack
Birth PlaceAlexandria, Egypt
Height180cm
GenderMale
Sun SignAries
Born inAlexandria, Egypt
Famous asActor
Died at Age83

// Famous Actors

Omar Sharif's photo

Who is Omar Sharif?

Omar Sharif was an Egyptian film star, best known for his performances in both American and British productions. The gentlest exponent of romantic heroism, Sharif was popular among the team as one of the least demanding actors. After working for his father’s business for some time, he made his first appearance on the screen with the movie ‘Shaytan Al-Sahra’ (also called ‘Devil of the Desert’). He met his wife Faten Hamama, an already established actress then, during the shooting of his second movie, ‘Sira` Fi al-Wadi’ (also called ‘Struggle in the Valley’). His appearance as an Arab chief in ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ immediately made him favourite among the women. A highly civilized man with cosmopolitan tastes, Omar Sharif bagged numerous awards for his sparkling performances in movies like ‘Lawrence of Arabia’, ‘Doctor Zhivago’, and ‘Monsieur Ibrahim’. His first love was often said to be bridge, and he contributed many columns on bridge in several newspapers. He also authored a book on bridge and created an institutional video. He was frustrated at the travel restrictions imposed by the Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser and this resulted in a kind of self-exile for him in Europe. This was also one of the main reasons for parting with his wife as he was away from the country most of the time owing to his shooting schedules.

// Famous Film & Theater Personalities

Childhood & Early Life

Originally named Michel Dimitri, Omar Sharif was born on April 10, 1932 in Alexandria, Egypt to Joseph Chalhoub and Claire Saada. His father was a precious wood merchant while his mother was a noted society hostess.

He belonged to the Syria-Lebanese 'Antiochian' Greek Catholics of Egypt and was of Melkite Catholic descent.

He started showing his talent for languages right from his college days while studying at Victoria College, Cairo. Later, he secured a graduation degree in mathematics and physics from Cairo University.

After graduating, he joined his father’s business but soon moved out to study acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London.

Career

Omar Sharif started his acting career with ‘Shaytan Al-Sahra’ (also called ‘Devil of the Desert’) in 1954. In the same year, he appeared in the role of Ahmed in another movie, ‘Sira` Fi al-Wadi’ (also called ‘Struggle in the Valley’).

From 1955 to 1957, he appeared in movies like ‘Ayyamna al-Holwa’, ‘La Châtelaine du Liban’, ‘Sira` Fi al-Mina’, and ‘Ard al-Salam’.

His popularity gradually rose to stardom, and he appeared in the Egyptian production ‘La Anam’ (‘Sleepless’) in 1958. In the same year, he appeared in the French production, ‘Goha’ and two other movies, ‘Shatie el asrar’ (‘Beach of Secrets’) and ‘Ghaltet habibi’ (‘My Lover’s Fault’).

In 1959, he performed in quite a good number of movies like ‘Siraa fil Nil’ (‘Struggle on the Nile’), ‘Sayyidat al-Qasr’ (‘Lady of the Palace’), ‘Min ajal emraa’ (‘For a Woman’), ‘Maweed maa maghoul’ (‘An Appointment with the Unknown’), and ‘Fadiha fil Zamalek’ (‘Scandal in Zamalek’).

After working in some Arab-speaking movies for the next two years, Omar Sharif got his first chance in the English historical epic ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ in 1962. David Lean, the director of the epic, insisted on having Sharif in the movie though he was not a known face outside Egypt. Lean insisted that ethnic actors would make the film more authentic and rightly, Sharif’s role proved to be one of the most demanding supporting roles in the history of Hollywood.

In 1964, Omar Sharif appeared in Fred Zinnemann’s ‘Behold a Pale Horse’. Zinnemann offer him the role after the suggestion of Lean. In the same year, Sharif appeared as a wartime patriot in the movie ‘The Yellow Rolls-Royce.’

He got a chance to work with Lean again in 1965 in the movie, ‘Doctor Zhivago’. The movie had Julie Christie as the main actress and was based on the Russian Revolution. Other films of this year include ‘Genghis Khan’, ‘Marco the Magnificent’, and ‘El Mamalik’.

He received applauds for his portrayal of Prince Rodrigo Fernandez in the movie ‘More Than a Miracle’ (1967) and for his performance as Streisand’s gambler-husband in ‘Funny Girl’ (1968).

He reprised his role in ‘The Funny Girl’ in it sequel ‘The Funny Lady’ (1975). He displayed some of his best performances in movies like ‘Mackenna’s Gold’ (1969), ‘Juggernaut’ (1974), and ‘The Tamarind Seed’ (1974).

In the later part of his career, he acted in movies like ‘The Pink Panther Strkes Again’ (1976), ‘The Baltimore Bullet’ (1980), ‘War in the Land of Egypt’ (1991), ‘The 13th Warrior’ (1999), ‘The Parole Officer (2001), etc.

His role in ‘Monsieur Ibrahim’ (2003) as a Muslim Turkish merchant, who is a father figure to a Jewish boy, won him the prestigious César Award for Best Actor.

His last role was in the movie ‘1001 Inventions and the World of Ibn Al-Haytham’, in 2015.

He also acted in some TV series like ‘The Mysterious Island’ (1973), ‘Peter the Great’ (1986), ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ (1996), ‘Imperium: Saint Peter’ (2005), and ‘The Last Templar’ (2008).

Major Works

The most notable role in the career of Omar Sharif was that of Serif Ali in ‘Lawrence of Arabia’. Directed by David Lean, the movie was a turning point in Sharif’s career and brought him numerous awards and huge recognition.

His performance in the movie ‘Doctor Zhivago’ won him critical and commercial success.

His performance in the movie ‘Monsieur Ibrahim’ in which he played the role of an elderly Turkish shopkeeper was also highly appreciated.

Awards & Achievements

Omar Sharif’s performance in ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ (1962) won him the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture and also the Golden Globe Award for New Star of the Year – Actor. He was also nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

He bagged the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor for his role in ‘Doctor Zhivago’ (1965).

He won the prestigious ‘César Award for Best Actor’ for his performance in ‘Monsieur Ibrahim’ (2003).

In 2005, he was honored with the Sergei Eisenstein Medal by UNESCO for his contributions to world film and cultural diversity.

Personal Life & Legacy

Omar Sharif lived in Egypt till 1965 and then moved to Europe. Though his father did not have prosperous business in the beginning, gradually it flourished. King Farouk often visited his house and befriended Sharif’s mother as card-game partner. After 1952, as wealth changed hands in Egypt under Nasser’s policies, his father’s business too had a decline.

In 1954, Omar Sharif met actress, Faten Hamma, during the shooting of the movie ‘Struggle in the Valley’. Both fell in love and married in 1955 after Sharif converted to Muslim. The couple had a son, Tarek Sharif, born in 1957.

Omar and Faten legally divorced in 1974 after living separately for eight years. The main reason for their separation is cited to be his prolonged time away from Egypt due to the Nasser government-imposed travel restrictions.

He was linked to the actress Barbra Streisand. This relationship almost cost him his Egyptian citizenship.

In 1992, he had a triple heart bypass. In May 2015, it was revealed that Sharif suffered from Alzheimer’s disease.

He passed away on July 10, 2015, after suffering a heart attack. He is survived by his son and two grandsons.

Trivia

At one time, he was one of the world’s top contract bridge players. In 1992, he licensed his name to the computer game ‘Omar Sharif Bridge’.

Until his heart bypass in 1992, Sharif used to smoke 100 cigarettes in a day. However, soon after the operation, he quit cigarettes.

He spoke English, French, Arabic, Italian, and Spanish fluently and was a horse-racing enthusiast.

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Omar Sharif awards

YearNameAward

Golden Globe Awards

1966Best Actor - DramaDoctor Zhivago (1965)
1963Best Supporting ActorLawrence of Arabia (1962)
1963Most Promising Newcomer - MaleLawrence of Arabia (1962)

Omar Sharif biography timelines

  • // 1001 To 2015
    His last role was in the movie ‘1001 Inventions and the World of Ibn Al-Haytham’, in 2015.
  • // 10th Apr 1932
    Originally named Michel Dimitri, Omar Sharif was born on April 10, 1932 in Alexandria, Egypt to Joseph Chalhoub and Claire Saada. His father was a precious wood merchant while his mother was a noted society hostess.
  • // 1952 To 1965
    Omar Sharif lived in Egypt till 1965 and then moved to Europe. Though his father did not have prosperous business in the beginning, gradually it flourished. King Farouk often visited his house and befriended Sharif’s mother as card-game partner. After 1952, as wealth changed hands in Egypt under Nasser’s policies, his father’s business too had a decline.
  • // 1954
    Omar Sharif started his acting career with ‘Shaytan Al-Sahra’ (also called ‘Devil of the Desert’) in 1954. In the same year, he appeared in the role of Ahmed in another movie, ‘Sira` Fi al-Wadi’ (also called ‘Struggle in the Valley’).
  • // 1955 To 1957
    From 1955 to 1957, he appeared in movies like ‘Ayyamna al-Holwa’, ‘La Châtelaine du Liban’, ‘Sira` Fi al-Mina’, and ‘Ard al-Salam’.
  • // 1958
    His popularity gradually rose to stardom, and he appeared in the Egyptian production ‘La Anam’ (‘Sleepless’) in 1958. In the same year, he appeared in the French production, ‘Goha’ and two other movies, ‘Shatie el asrar’ (‘Beach of Secrets’) and ‘Ghaltet habibi’ (‘My Lover’s Fault’).
  • // 1959
    In 1959, he performed in quite a good number of movies like ‘Siraa fil Nil’ (‘Struggle on the Nile’), ‘Sayyidat al-Qasr’ (‘Lady of the Palace’), ‘Min ajal emraa’ (‘For a Woman’), ‘Maweed maa maghoul’ (‘An Appointment with the Unknown’), and ‘Fadiha fil Zamalek’ (‘Scandal in Zamalek’).
  • // 1962
    After working in some Arab-speaking movies for the next two years, Omar Sharif got his first chance in the English historical epic ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ in 1962. David Lean, the director of the epic, insisted on having Sharif in the movie though he was not a known face outside Egypt. Lean insisted that ethnic actors would make the film more authentic and rightly, Sharif’s role proved to be one of the most demanding supporting roles in the history of Hollywood.
  • // 1962
    Omar Sharif’s performance in ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ (1962) won him the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture and also the Golden Globe Award for New Star of the Year – Actor. He was also nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.
  • // 1964
    In 1964, Omar Sharif appeared in Fred Zinnemann’s ‘Behold a Pale Horse’. Zinnemann offer him the role after the suggestion of Lean. In the same year, Sharif appeared as a wartime patriot in the movie ‘The Yellow Rolls-Royce.’
  • // 1965
    He got a chance to work with Lean again in 1965 in the movie, ‘Doctor Zhivago’. The movie had Julie Christie as the main actress and was based on the Russian Revolution. Other films of this year include ‘Genghis Khan’, ‘Marco the Magnificent’, and ‘El Mamalik’.
  • // 1965
    He bagged the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor for his role in ‘Doctor Zhivago’ (1965).
  • // 1967 To 1968
    He received applauds for his portrayal of Prince Rodrigo Fernandez in the movie ‘More Than a Miracle’ (1967) and for his performance as Streisand’s gambler-husband in ‘Funny Girl’ (1968).
  • // 1974
    Omar and Faten legally divorced in 1974 after living separately for eight years. The main reason for their separation is cited to be his prolonged time away from Egypt due to the Nasser government-imposed travel restrictions.
  • // 1992 To May 2015
    In 1992, he had a triple heart bypass. In May 2015, it was revealed that Sharif suffered from Alzheimer’s disease.
  • // 1992
    At one time, he was one of the world’s top contract bridge players. In 1992, he licensed his name to the computer game ‘Omar Sharif Bridge’.
  • // 1992
    Until his heart bypass in 1992, Sharif used to smoke 100 cigarettes in a day. However, soon after the operation, he quit cigarettes.
  • // 2003
    His role in ‘Monsieur Ibrahim’ (2003) as a Muslim Turkish merchant, who is a father figure to a Jewish boy, won him the prestigious César Award for Best Actor.
  • // 2003
    He won the prestigious ‘César Award for Best Actor’ for his performance in ‘Monsieur Ibrahim’ (2003).
  • // 2005
    In 2005, he was honored with the Sergei Eisenstein Medal by UNESCO for his contributions to world film and cultural diversity.
  • // 10th Jul 2015
    He passed away on July 10, 2015, after suffering a heart attack. He is survived by his son and two grandsons.

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Omar Sharif's FAQ

  • What is Omar Sharif birthday?

    Omar Sharif was born at 1932-04-10

  • When was Omar Sharif died?

    Omar Sharif was died at 2015-07-10

  • Which age was Omar Sharif died?

    Omar Sharif was died at age 83

  • Where is Omar Sharif's birth place?

    Omar Sharif was born in Alexandria, Egypt

  • What is Omar Sharif nationalities?

    Omar Sharif's nationalities is Egyptian

  • What is Omar Sharif nick names?

    Omar Sharif's nickNames is Omar el-Sherief

  • Who is Omar Sharif spouses?

    Omar Sharif's spouses is Faten Hamama

  • What was Omar Sharif universities?

    Omar Sharif studied at Victoria College, Alexandria, Cairo University Royal Academy of Dramatic Art

  • What is Omar Sharif's cause of dead?

    Omar Sharif dead because of Heart Attack

  • How tall is Omar Sharif?

    Omar Sharif's height is 180

  • What is Omar Sharif's sun sign?

    Omar Sharif is Aries

  • How famous is Omar Sharif?

    Omar Sharif is famouse as Actor