It’s 2021, and we’re all here to witness some Muslim representation in the American media. Three Muslim actors have received historic nominations for the 78th Golden Globes Award show, taking place on February 28, 2021. It’s the first time in history that three Muslim actors were all nominated in the same year.
Personally, I have watched over 200 TV shows and I can’t describe the pain of not being able to find characters with the same race, religion and culture as me. And why would they, when they are written, directed, and produced by people that don’t understand what it is like to be me, a Muslim woman.
However, change is on it’s way! In the last few years, shows like Ramy, released on Hulu, have illustrated a unique perspective on life of the Muslim community. . If you haven’t watched the show, you definitely should! In the show, Ramy, the main character explores various aspects of his American-Egyptian identity, hoping to find a balance between the two cultures.
Ramy Youssef, actor that plays Ramy is nominated for the second time, after already receiving the Golden Globe for the Best Actor in Television Series, Musical and Comedy last year.
Actor Rizwan Ahmed is also nominated for the second time; this time for the best performance in a dramatic film. There is no doubt on whether his performance was worthy of the nomination.
He captivated the audience in the movie Sound of Metal, where he portrayed a drummer who loses his ability to hear.
Other nominations include Tahar Rahim, for his role as a Guantanamo Bay prisoner in the movie The Mauritian. He is going to be the first Muslim actor running for the best actor in a motion picture. Although this is Rahim’s first nomination, he has been previously recognized for his work in the French – language cinema.
Throughout his career Rahim has refused to play a role that presents him as a terrorist to avoid the stereotypes attached to Muslim identity, and we appaul him for that. For years, Muslim characters on TV have been potrayed as conservatives or terrorists, but finally we are seeing a shift in the narrative. A shift that is for the better, one that is truer and more relatable to the experiences of the Muslim people. And we’re all here for it!