Abdi at the 2014 New York Film Festival
|Residence||Los Angeles, California, United States|
Barkhad Abdi (Somali: Barkhad Cabdi) (born April 10, 1985) is a Somali-American actor and director. He made his debut in the film Captain Phillips (2013), for which he received a BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role, as well as Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations.
Abdi was born in Mogadishu, Banaadir to a Majeerteen family. Around the age of six or seven, when the Somali Civil War broke out, he and his family moved to Yemen to join his father, who had taken up teaching. In 1999, Abdi and his family relocated to Minneapolis, Minnesota, where there is a large Somali community. He subsequently attended Minnesota State University Moorhead. Before entering the film industry, Abdi sold mobile phones at his brother's shop at a mall in Minneapolis. He also worked as a limousine driver at a relative's chauffeur company and as a DJ.
Abdi made his debut in the 2013 film Captain Phillips. He played ship hijacker and pirate leader Abduwali Muse. He was cast following a worldwide search for the lead roles. Abdi and three other actors were subsequently chosen from more than 700 participants at a 2011 casting call in Minneapolis. According to the casting director, the four were selected because they were "the chosen ones, that anointed group that stuck out". He was paid only $65,000 for his appearance in the film and returned to working in his brother's shop afterwards.
For his work, Abdi was nominated for the Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Supporting Actor, the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, and a Golden Globe Award. He won a BAFTA Award for Best Supporting Actor. Abdi's experience in Captain Phillips was his first in the film industry.
In January 2014, Abdi read scripts for a television show. He landed a role in an episode of the series Hawaii Five-0, playing former warlord Roko Makoni. Later that year, he began work on the comedy film Trainwreck, though he did not appear in the finished film. He also appeared in the 2015 thriller Eye in the Sky, playing Jama Farah; and appeared in The Brothers Grimsby. In 2016 Abdi played the lead role in A Stray, an independent film directed by Musa Syeed that was set in the Minneapolis Somali community.
Abdi reversed his Captain Phillips role in the 2017 film The Pirates of Somalia, playing the Somali government-sponsored local agent and translator for Canadian freelance journalist Jay Bahadur. Abdi coordinates interviews between local pirate leaders and Bahadur, who records the motivations of Somali piracy in the weeks leading up to the Maersk Alabama hijacking.
Abdi resides in Los Angeles, California, as well as Cedar-Riverside, Minneapolis, Minnesota. The notable lump on his forehead came from a car accident he was in sometime prior to auditioning for Captain Phillips.
|2013||Captain Phillips||Abduwali Muse|
|2015||Eye in the Sky||Jama Farah|
|Blade Runner 2049||Doc Badger|
|The Pirates of Somalia||Abdi|
|2018||The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir||Wiraj|
|2019||A Girl from Mogadishu||Hassan||Post-production|
|Beneath a Sea of Light||Caweys||Post-production|
|2015||Hawaii Five-0||Roko Makoni||Episode: "E 'Imi pono"|
|2016||Family Guy||Abduwali Muse||Voice|
Episode: "Road to India"
Awards and nominations
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- "Judd Apatow's 'Trainwreck' Casts Up: Tilda Swinton, Barkhad Abdi and John Cena Sign On". Slashfilm.com. 2014-03-18. Retrieved 2014-05-21.
- Reilly, Travis (October 28, 2014). "'Breaking Bad' Star Aaron Paul Is a Conflicted Drone Pilot in 'Eye in the Sky'". TheWrap. Retrieved October 29, 2014.
- Syeed, Musa (2016-03-14), A Stray, Barkhad Abdirahman, Fathia Absie, Faysal Ahmed, retrieved 2018-01-05
- The Pirates of Somalia, 2017-04-27, retrieved 2018-05-05
- "'Blade Runner 2049': Barkhad Abdi Shares New Character Details". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2017-04-19.
- "Adeso Ambassador Barkhad Abdi appeals for Somali cyclone aid". Mareeg. 6 December 2013. Retrieved 14 December 2013.
- Lammers, Tim (5 March 2014). "Report: Fresh off Oscar nomination, Barkhad Abdi 'dead broke'". Bringmethenews. Retrieved 23 June 2014.
- Kerr, Euan (14 October 2016). "A boy-and-his-dog story, with a cultural twist". Minnesota Public Radio. Retrieved 8 July 2018.
- Marsh, Steve (February 26, 2014). "Barkhad Abdi: A Pirate's Life". Mpls St. Paul Magazine. Retrieved February 13, 2018.
- "Oscar-nominee Barkhad Abdi to star in Dubai director Neel Kumar's second feature 'Beneath a Sea of Lights'". The National.
- McNary, Dave (11 July 2018). "Barkhad Abdi, Amy Smart, Rory Cochrane Join Family Drama 'Tyson's Run' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety.
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