Early Childhood & Education
Rami Malek was born in Los Angeles, on May 12, 1981, to Egyptian immigrant parent, His mother’s name is Nelly Abdel-Malek while his father is Said Malek.
His parents left Egypt in the year 1978 after his father, a tour guide in Cairo, became inspired by Western tourists.
They settled in Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles, mostly staying in the San Fernando Valley and hardly opportunity to visit Hollywood.
Rami’ mother is an Accountant while his late father was an insurance salesman.He was raised in Coptic Orthodox Christian faith and grew up learning and speaking casual Egyptian Arabic at home until the age of four.
Malek has an identical twin brother named Sami who is younger by four minutes; he is an English teacher by profession. His older sister name is Yasmine who happens to be is a medical doctor.
Malek parents ensured that they instilled the Egyptian culture and values unto their Children while growing up such that they do not forget their source and origin.
Rami recalled several occasion where his late father would wake them up in the middle of the night to talk to his Arabic-speaking extended family in their hometown of Samalut in faraway Egypt.
Growing up in America as an Egyptian descent, Malek found it difficult to fit in as a child due of difference in culture, he experiences in most of his childhood having his name mispronounced by his peers.
He said in an Interview “It only took me till high school where I found the confidence to tell everybody, no, my name is Rami. It’s a very upsetting thing to think about, that I didn’t have the confidence to correct anyone at that point”.
He went to Notre Dame High School, Sherman Oaks, California.
He was in the same class as actress Rachel Bilson and Kirsten Dunst, who is a year younger, also attended the school, and they both attended the same musical theatre class.
Although his parents nursed the dreams of his becoming a lawyer, so he joined the debate team. Though he struggled to form arguments, his debate teacher noted his talent in dramatic interpretation and encouraged him instead to perform the one-man play Zooman and The Sign at a competition.
Remembering the moment, he said, “On stage, I’m having this moment with my dad with a bunch of other people in the audience, but then I thought, wow, something really special is happening here”.
It was the first time he saw his father become emotional, and his parents’ positive reaction to his performance left him feeling free to pursue an acting career.
He graduated in 1999, he went on to study Theatre Art at the University of Evansville in Evansville, Indiana, where he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in 2003.
Early Work & Career Growth
Upon graduation from, Malek wished to attend grad school for theatre; however, with college debt growing.
He relocated to New York instead where he shared a one-bedroom apartment with friends who were also in the theatre business.
He made a connection with professional friends ranging from Writers and Directors. They collaborated and performed their own plays around the city. He met casting director Mali Finn while on a visit to a relative in Los Angeles who convinced him to stay and seek opportunity for work in Hollywood.
After moving in with his parents, Malek worked delivering pizza and making falafel and shawarma sandwiches at a restaurant in Hollywood just to eke out the living.
Even though he sent his resume to production houses, he was unable to secure work as an actor, which led to bouts of depression and a loss of confidence. Heat some point considered getting a real estate license instead of pursuing an acting career.
In 2004, after about a year and a half in Hollywood he got a call from casting Director Mara Casey. She asked to speak to his agent and when he confessed he did not have one, she told him to get one first.
However, Malek suggested they meet anyway after having a smooth conversation with her on the phone. She agreed and the meeting led to him getting his first role in the TV sitcom Gilmore Girls.
He started his acting career playing guest roles in the TV series ‘Gilmore Girls’, ‘Over There’ and ‘Medium’.
His major role was in the American sitcom ‘The War at Home’ which ran for two seasons from 2005-2007, earning mostly mixed reviews.
His first film debut was in 2006 with a supporting role in the comedy fantasy film ‘Night at the Museum’.
He played the role of Pharaoh Ahkmenrah and repeated the same role in the movie’s sequel ‘Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian’ in 2009 which was both commercially successful.
In 2010, he was featured in a few episodes of the popular TV series ‘24’ and also in some episodes of the TV series ‘The Pacific’.
In 2011, he played a supporting role in the comedy film ‘Larry Crowne’. It was a commercial success and was met with mixed reviews.
The following year he appeared in the 2012 sci-fi ‘Battleship, although it received mostly mixed reviews but was also a commercial success.
In 2012, he was seen in ‘The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn- Part 2’. The film, which was the final instalment of the Twilight Saga film series, was a huge success commercially. Critical response was mostly mixed.
Malek had two film releases in 2013, which were ‘Ain’t Them Bodies Saints’ and ‘Short Term 12’.
In 2014, he was seen in the action thriller film ‘Need for Speed’. It was based on the video game series of the same name. It was met with mixed reviews and was a commercial success.
He reprised his role of Pharaoh Ahkmenrah in ‘Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb,’ the third instalment of the ‘Night at the Museum’ film series, in 2014. The film was a commercial success and reviews were mostly mixed. The same year, he was also seen in the film ‘Da Sweet Blood of Jesus’.
In 2015, he began playing the lead role in the drama thriller TV series ‘Mr. Robot’. He portrayed Elliot Alderson, an engineer and hacker, who gets recruited by Mr Robot, an insurrectionary anarchist. Malek’s role was appreciated and it won him an Emmy Award.
In 2016, he was seen in the lead role in the mystery film ‘Buster’s Mal Heart.’The film was appreciated by critics. His most recent work is the 2017 biographical drama film ‘Papillon’.The film is about the prison escape of a French convict named Henri Charriere.
In 2018, Malek portrayed singer Freddie Mercury in ‘Bohemian Rhapsody,’ for which he won several awards, including the ‘Academy Award’ for best actor.
In 2012, He was then seen in the drama film ‘The Master’. Although the film was quite popular and earned positive reviews, it was a financial failure.
Rami Malek gave an interview recently at the Santa Barbara film festival over the disagreement he had with the former Director of Bohemian Rhapsody, Bran Singer.
In what can be seen as an emotional tone he said: “My situation with Bryan, it was not pleasant, not at all. And that’s about what I can say about it at this point.”
He mentioned, “creative differences” with the Director and of the “tumultuous” set as some of the causes before Bryan was eventually fired by Fox.
In February 2019, the night of the Oscars after Rami Malek won the Best Actor category for playing Queen’s frontman Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody.
He missed his leg and fell off the stage onto the ground while descending the steps.
Thankfully, Rami wasn’t hurt because he instantly popped back up, took a line out of Freddie’s book, and was like, “Goodbye, everybody. I’ve got to go”…backstage and do some interviews.
In 2017, Malek was honoured by his Alma Mata with Young Alumnus Award, “given to those who have achieved personal success and contribute services to their community and to University of Evansville.
He became best known for his lead role in the drama thriller series ‘Mr. Robot’, which has earned much critical acclaim. He took the role of Elliot Alderson, a cybersecurity engineer and hacker, which won him an Emmy Award for his brilliant performance in the ‘Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series.
Recently, he was invited to become a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. In 2018, Malek portrayed Freddie Mercury in ‘Bohemian Rhapsody,’ for which he won several awards, including the ‘Academy Award’ for best actor in the 2019 award edition.
Malek can now enjoy the luxury of picking of roles in the future, due to the huge success of Bohemian Rhapsody which appears to take the industry by storm.
His next project in the film is a role as the voice of Chee-Chee the gorilla in the upcoming Voyage of Doctor Dolittle.
Mr Robot will end when its current fourth series finishes towards the end of 2019.
Malek will then have the time to sit down and work out how he will conquer Hollywood.
We hope you have enjoyed exploring Malek biography here and his success story has inspired you to new discoveries.
What do you think about the lessons taken from Rami Malek story? Let us know in the comments below.
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