- Does anybody else get super excited for actors that usually play terrorists when they play ...not-terrorists? I love when they're English-speaking guys, just playing English-speaking guys. I'm always happy when I see that they're working, no matter who they're playing, but I get really happy for them when I see that they've broken through their stereotyping, because then they can just be Awesome Actors.
I know some Middle Eastern-looking actors, and they usually play terrorists, despite the fact that they are Certified Hotties. I'm glad the jobs are there for them, but I also wish the world saw them as Actors first, and Persian second.
Oded Fehr has done a great job of bridging that line. Sure, he was a Persian good-guy in The Mummy, and was so good in such a short time, that they expanded his role in The Mummy Returns. He's also played a terrorist several times, and now he's a respected name, sometimes playing a good-guy Israeli Mossad agent on Covert Affairs. His new typecast: Badass Smart Guy. Now that he's getting into Silver-Fox territory, I can't wait to see what he plays!
Faran Tahir is another who's merged into the Badass Smart Guy type. He's played several terrorists over the years, but since his turn as a starship captain in Star Trek, he's been doing that less. I love seeing him pop up in things; he's a Character Actor now, and I adore those.
Cliff Curtis could not be further from Persian, yet he's played a LOT of Middle Eastern terrorists. I was really excited that he got a couple of TV shows that had him playing people with broader backgrounds. They were short-lived series. I think he really needs to find his way into a comic book movie, as somebody major. He's got the skill for it. Also, when you need a good sob, watch Whale Rider. Beautiful movie.
Omid Abtahi seems to be the latest to have broken through. He probably looks quite familiar. He's played the guest-terrorist on many tv shows. Last Resort was a flawed show, but I wanted it to keep going so the actors would stay employed. Particularly, so Omid Abtahi could play Nigel, the English scientist, some more. IMDb has him listed for the second Mockingjay movie, which is encouraging.
Can you think of others that you're rooting for, to get un-stuck from typecast roles? I'd had a very limited view of Enver Gjokaj until I watched Dollhouse and saw that he was more than the Eastern European mook that he usually played. I think that can qualify, too. If you can think of any women, too, who are a bit stuck playing a 'type.' These were just the four off the top of my head, inspired by the horrible, racist "Indian guys" thread from yesterday. (inspiration can take you on a funny journey, till you get to the interesting thoughts.)