Top 20 Most Famous Muslim Celebrities In The World
|Most Famous Muslim Celebrities - Photo KnowInsiders|
And, not only have they built careers to inspire people of all backgrounds, they'v also dispelled misconceptions surrounding their faith along the way.
While there are many more out there, here are 20 Muslim celebrities who have left their mark at home and abroad.
Who Are The Most Famous Muslim Celebrities In The World - Top 20
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Dr. Mehmet Oz is a cardiothoracic surgeon at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, as well as an author and the host of the popular health and wellness TV series, "The Dr. Oz Show." The Turkish-American doctor is also a Muslim.
In an interview with PBS, Dr. Oz explained that his father comes from Turkey's "Quran Belt" and his mother was a secular Turk.
"You know, I've struggled a lot with my Muslim identity," he explained. "As a Turk, growing up in America with one parent from one side of the religious wall and one parent from the other side, and of course America clearly supporting the secular background, I found myself tugged more and more towards the spiritual side of the religion, rather than the legal side of the religion."
Legendary heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali – born Cassius Clay in Louisville, Kentucky – converted to Islam in the 1960s and was a devout Muslim.
In a December 2015 statement, he spoke out against extremism, saying: "True Muslims know that the ruthless violence of so called Islamic Jihadists goes against the very tenets of our religion... Our political leaders should use their position to bring understanding about the religion of Islam and clarify that these misguided murderers have perverted people's views on what Islam really is."
Ali died in June 2016 at the age of 74.
The former One Direction band member was raised Muslim by his mother, who converted to the religion, and his British-Pakistani father.
In 2018 the singer told Vogue that he no longer considers himself to be a follower of the Islamic faith. "With my mum and dad, they were always there to educate us – I did go to mosque, I did study Islam," Malik said. "But they gave us the option so you could choose for yourself."
At 17, Yousafzai became the youngest Nobel Prize laureate. She has been named one of Time magazine's "100 Most Influential People in the World" for 2013, 2014 and 2015 for her work championing education rights for girls.
In 2015 Yousafzai told British TV Network Channel 4 that she believes being Muslim does not conflict with her feminist views. "Islam is about equality and calling myself feminist would have no position from the religion," she said.
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The supermodel has never been shy about expressing pride in her faith and Palestinian heritage. In a 2017 interview with Porter magazine, she revealed how her life had been shaped by her father, real-estate mogul Mohamed Hadid.
“He was always religious, and he always prayed with us,” the model said of her father, who is of Palestinian descent. “I am proud to be a Muslim.”
Hadid also told Elle magazine that same year that she came "from a really diverse background".
"I’ve had incredible experiences all over the world … and I’ve learnt that we’re all just people, and we all deserve respect and kindness," she added.
In 2017 the model marched in protest of President Trump's executive order seeking to halt refugees and visitors from seven predominantly Muslim countries. Hadid later told Porter magazine that she protested in honor of her heritage and her religion.
"My dad was a refugee when he first came to America, so it's actually very close to home for my sister and brother and me," Hadid said. "He was always religious, and he always prayed with us. I am proud to be a Muslim."
Youssef is the creator and star of the Hulu series "Ramy." The dark comedy is loosely based on Youssef's life as a first-generation Muslim American millennial and the struggles that come with balancing those identities.
"You sit in contradictions," he told NPR. "That has been the space that I'm trying to navigate. And that's kind of the space that I bring to the work."
His acting performance on the show earned him a Golden Globe award in 2020.
Born in the US to Senegalese parents, the singer and entrepreneur credits his spirituality with maintaining his focus as both a creative and businessman.
"It makes you ask the question: what is success? Is it fame or fortune? Does that measure what success means to you? Or is it faith?" he told The National in 2019. "For me, real success is faith. If God is not smiling upon me, I am not successful. I don't care even if I have a billion dollars in the bank. And what good am I if have a billion dollars sitting in the bank in the first place?"
During a previous visit to the Gulf in March, Akon went to Makkah, in Saudi Arabia, to perform the Umrah pilgrimage.
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Shaquille O'Neal was raised by a Baptist mother and Muslim stepfather. He has been identified as Muslim in several biographies, but he is quoted as saying, "I'm Muslim, I'm Jewish, I'm Buddhist, I'm everybody 'cause I'm a people person."
During his two-decade NBA career, Shaquille O'Neal played for six different teams, including the LA Lakers, the Miami Heat and the Orlando Magic. The star has in past spoken of his wish to complete the Hajj pilgrimage, and also named his "Muslim brother" Hakeem Olajuwon as one of the best players of all time.
In 2009, it was reported that Snoop Dogg had joined the Nation of Islam. As of 2012, he converted to the Rastafari movement and changed his name to Snoop Lion.
Birthplace: USA, Long Beach, California
American hip-hop artist Busta Rhymes, born Trevor Tahiem Smith, Jr., is a proud Muslim and attributes much of his success to the way in which his faith has kept him grounded.
In a 2007 interview with Hollywood TV, Rhymes said, "I try to really just understand every aspect about the most high. For me, the most high is Allah... And I live my life by Islam.
|"At the end of the day, I think that's pretty much what grounds me in the way that I think most people should be grounded. That's just enjoying who you are as a human life, as opposed to trying to add all these other additive and preservatives to your perspective on life."|
Born O'Shea Jackson, rapper Ice Cube converted to Islam after going solo in the 1990s. The star rose to prominence years earlier as a member of the group N.W.A, and has gone on to star in a number of films and television shows.
In a 2000 interview with The Guardian, he spoke of the importance of his Muslim identity. "I mean, what I call myself is a natural Muslim, 'cause it's just me and God. You know, going to the mosque, the ritual and the tradition, it's just not in me to do. So I don't do it."
Supermodel Iman Abdulmajid, born Zara Mohamed Abdulmajid, told Vogue Arabia in 2018 about growing up as a Muslim girl in Egypt.
"I'm Muslim and Egypt was a very progressive place. Girls like me could go to school. I completely fell in love with the people and the cultural legacy that goes far beyond the pyramids," she said.
The former undisputed heavyweight champion of the world, Mike Tyson has held all three major championship belts that boxing has to offer. You also probably know that he was once disqualified for biting Evander Holyfield's ear. But did you know Tyson is a proud Muslim?
According to USA Today, Tyson converted to Islam in the 1990s. He has said he has performed various religious pilgrimages, including one to the holy city of Mecca. Hasan Minhaj
The "Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj" host has said that he identifies as Muslim but that his identity is also informed by many things. "Like, just 'cause I'm Muslim – that doesn't mean I can't do yoga, even though that's, like, a Hindu practice, comes from Hinduism," he told NPR in 2020.
"Like, any of these things that have come from, you know, other cultures and religious practices or beliefs – like, if it makes if it vibes with me. I'm with it, you know? I'm kind of like PlayStation 3. Like, you know how it's backwards compatible? I'll play the other games."
|Photo The Guardian|
Ahmed has frequently spoken out about the realities of being Muslim in western countries. While leading a discussion during a diversity leadership event in California, Ahmed, who was born in Britain and has acted in TV series such as "The OA," "The Night Of" and "Girls," said "I'm basically here to ask for your help, because it's really scary to be a Muslim right now, super scary."
"I've often wondered, is this going to be the year when they round us up, if this is going to be the year they put Trump's registry into action. If this is going to be the year they ship us all off."
The Iranian-American actress was born into a Muslim family. In a 2013 interview with the Los Angeles Times, Aghdashloo speculated that her Muslim identity may have cost her a film role. Although director George Nolfi wanted her for the role of God in the 2011 thriller "The Adjustment Bureau," she was let go.
"I say I was born a Muslim. I don't introduce myself as a Muslim woman, but I guess the distribution company put the dots together and felt it's too early for this," Aghdashloo said.
The Grammy Award-winning music producer is proud to be Muslim. "It's life for me. I was born Muslim, my family raised me Muslim. It's beautiful, it's amazing, it's incredible and it has put so many blessings upon me and my family," he told Esquire in 2018.
"My faith has helped make me the man I am right now, with the love and the respect that I put out there. I love anybody that loves God. That's what I am about."
The American rapper converted to Islam in 2009. Raekwon, born Corey Woods, was asked by GQ in 2017 if he was keeping up with news of the Trump administration's "travel ban" on refugees and visitors from seven predominantly Muslim countries.
"Allah... he's going to let it be what it be, and whenever he wants to fix it, he's going to fix it," the Wu-Tang Clan rapper said. "Right now, I'm just focusing on my children, my career and really just letting it be what it's going to be, at the end of the day it'll work itself out."
|Photo Enigma Magazine|
Born Michel Dimitri Chalhoub, the three-time Golden Globe-winning actor converted to Islam in 1955 to marry Egyptian actress Faten Hamama, whom he later divorced in 1974.
The actor died in July 2015.
Hakeem Abdul Olajuwon is widely considered one of the best centers to ever play basketball. After leading the University of Houston to three Final Fours, Olajuwon was selected by the Houston Rockets as the first overall pick of the 1984 NBA draft, over Michael Jordan.
He then led the Rockets to back-to-back NBA Championships in 1994 and 1995, taking home the title of NBA Finals MVP both years as well.
According to NBA.com, Olajuwon still observed the Islamic fasting month of Ramadan during his NBA seasons.
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