Omar Sy

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Omar Sy
Omar Sy (2020).jpg
Born (1978-01-20) 20 January 1978 (age 43)
Years active1996–present
(m. 2007)

Omar Sy (French pronunciation: ​[ɔmaʁ si]; born 20 January 1978) is a French actor and comedian. Best known in his homeland for his sketches with Fred Testot on the Service après-vente des émissions television show on Canal+ (2005–2012), he gained fame abroad with the 2011 comedy-drama film The Intouchables, which earned him the César Award for Best Actor. Sy became the first Black recipient of the award. He further appeared in X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014), Jurassic World (2015), Two Is a Family (2016), Transformers: The Last Knight (2017) and the Netflix-produced show Lupin (2021).[2]

Early life[edit]

The fourth of eight children,[3] Sy was born in Trappes in the Yvelines department, France.[2] His parents are both immigrants from West Africa.[3] His Mauritanian mother worked as a house-cleaner, and his Senegalese father worked in a factory.[3] He has Fulani origins.[4] He was raised in low-income suburban housing projects.[3][4]


Omar Sy winning the César Award for Best Actor in 2012 at the 37th César Awards for The Intouchables

He started his career after high school in 1996[4] with Radio Nova as a comedian where he met comedy partner Fred Testot.[2] Afterwards, he appeared in the TV show Le Cinéma de Jamel on Canal+, with Jamel Debbouze. He then created a TV show called Le Visiophon.[2] This was followed by various TV and stage shows such as Je ne fais pas mon âge, Service après-vente des émissions, Omar et Fred: le spectacle. In 2005, Service après-vente des émissions was adapted into short sketches of 2 or 3 minutes on Canal+. (In 2012, Canal+ announced that the programme had been dropped from its schedule.)

He appeared in the television game show Fort Boyard in 2006.

Omar then went to Los Angeles, where he lent his voice to Zip in the French version of the Tomb Raider Legend video game. He previously had also voiced a sheep in Disney's Brother Bear.[2]

In 2008, he appeared in "Bienvenue chez les Bylkas", a video clip by Sinik. In 2009, he voiced some of the characters of Logorama with his partner Fred Testot.

In 2011, he starred in The Intouchables, playing a streetwise young man who becomes the personal care assistant to a wealthy quadriplegic (played by François Cluzet). This film enjoyed tremendous popular success, with more than 19 million tickets sold. It topped the French box office in 2011 and became the best selling French film of all time at the French box office. As a result, Omar Sy was voted third favourite French personality behind Yannick Noah and Zinedine Zidane. The role earned him the 2012 Globe de Cristal for Best Actor. He also received a nomination for a Satellite Award for Best Actor.[5] He and co-star François Cluzet were jointly bestowed the Best Actor Award at the Tokyo International Film Festival. Additionally, he won the César Award for Best Actor in 2012 for the same film.

On 30 December 2012, Omar Sy was voted favourite personality in France, based on a poll run by Le Journal du Dimanche, ahead of fellow actor Gad Elmaleh.

In 2014, Sy appeared in X-Men: Days of Future Past, in which he played the character Bishop. He also stars in Samba, directed by Olivier Nakache and Éric Toledano. He co-starred in the fourth film of the Jurassic Park saga, Jurassic World,[2] which was released in June 2015.[6] In 2017, he voiced the character Hot Rod in the film Transformers: The Last Knight, the fifth installment in the Transformers series. In 2021, he starred in Netflix's hit series Lupin, a modern day retelling of Arsène Lupin novels.[7][8]

Personal life[edit]

On 5 July 2007, he married Hélène, the mother of his five children,[4][9] in Tremblay-sur-Mauldre. They were together ten years before marrying.[9] The family resides in a house in the Montfort-l'Amaury commune of Île-de-France.[9]

Sy is Muslim.[3][10]


Year Title Role Director Notes
2000 La cape et l'épée Le ménestrel TV Series (1 episode)
Granturismo Voice Denis Thybaud Short
2001 La Tour Montparnasse Infernale Taxi Charles Nemes
La concierge est dans l'ascenseur Olivier Coussemacq Short
Omar et Fred Various Characters TV Series
2002 Le Boulet Malian No. 3 Alain Berberian & Frédéric Forestier
Asterix & Obelix: Mission Cleopatra Painter Alain Chabat
Samourais Tyson Giordano Gederlini
The Race UNO Sergeant Djamel Bensalah
Ces jours heureux Brice Olivier Nakache & Éric Toledano Short
Si j'étais lui Gabriel Philippe Triboit TV Movie
2003 La Beuze Michel Dembélé François Desagnat & Thomas Sorriaux
Pardon aux familles... Tout ça! Voice Patrick Menais Video
2004 Le Carton Lorenzo Charles Nemes
Coming-out Max Olivier Ayache-Vidal Short
Un Jean-Pierre ça peut tout faire Patrick Menais Video
2006 Nos jours heureux Joseph Olivier Nakache & Éric Toledano NRJ Ciné Awards – Most Promising Actor
Nominated – NRJ Ciné Award for The Best Kiss (with Marilou Berry)
Nominated – Raimu de la Comédie for The Best Supporting Actor
Les multiples Jimmy (voice) TV Series
2007 Garage Babes Hamidou Julien Pelgrand Video
Moot-Moot Isidore TV Series
2008 Seuls two Sammy Bouglioni Éric Judor & Ramzy Bedia
La France d'après Voice Patrick Menais Video
2009 Micmacs Remington Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Arthur and the Revenge of Maltazard Snow (voice) Luc Besson French dub
Lascars Narbé (voice) Emmanuel Klotz & Albert Pereira-Lazaro
Tellement proches Bruno Olivier Nakache & Éric Toledano
King Guillaume Jean-Peter Pierre-François Martin-Laval
Safari Youssouf Hammal Olivier Baroux
Envoyés très spéciaux Jimmy Frédéric Auburtin
La Loi de Murphy Father Joachim Ortega Christophe Campos
2010 Allez raconte! Momo (voice) Jean-Christophe Roger
Le pas Petit Poucet Grand Poucet Christophe Campos TV Movie
Histoires de vies Mo' TV Series (1 episode)
Florence Foresti: Mother Fucker Chauffeur de taxi Nicolas Benamou Video
2010–2012 SAV des émissions Various TV Series (4 episodes)
2011 Les Tuche Curé de Bouzolles Olivier Baroux
Intouchables Bakary "Driss" Bassari Olivier Nakache & Éric Toledano César Award for Best Actor
Tokyo International Film Festival – Best Actor (Share with François Cluzet)
Lumières Award for Best Actor
Globes de Cristal Award for Best Actor
Etoiles d'Or Award for Revelation of the Year
Santa Barbara International Film Festival – Virtuoso Award
Nominated – Black Reel Award for Best Actor
Nominated – Black Reel Award for Best Breakthrough Performance
Nominated – European Film Award for Best Actor
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture
Fish'n Chips Fish TV Series (52 episodes)
2012 De l'autre côté du périph Ousmane Diakhaté David Charhon
Les seigneurs Wéké N'Dogo Olivier Dahan
Mais qui a re-tué Pamela Rose? Mosby Olivier Baroux & Kad Merad
Crazy Pink Limo The Philosopher Joséphine de Meaux Short
Bref Himself TV Series (1 episode)
2012 Zak Himself
2013 Mood Indigo Nicolas Michel Gondry
Aux Armes: AIDES Narrator (voice) Short
2014 Good People Khan Henrik Ruben Genz
X-Men: Days of Future Past Bishop Bryan Singer
Samba Samba Cissé Olivier Nakache & Éric Toledano
Mune: Guardian of the Moon Sohone (voice) Benoît Philippon & Alexandre Heboyan
2015 Jurassic World Barry Colin Trevorrow
Lego Jurassic World Barry (voice) Video Game
Burnt Michel John Wells
2016 Chocolat Clown Chocolat Roschdy Zem Globes de Cristal Award for Best Actor
Nominated – César Award for Best Actor
Nominated – Lumières Award for Best Actor
The Angry Birds Movie Red (voice) Fergal Reilly & Clay Kaytis French dub
Norm of the North Norm (voice)[11] Trevor Wall French dub
Inferno Christoph Bouchard Ron Howard
Demain tout commence Samuel Hugo Gélin
2017 Sahara Ajar (voice) Pierre Coré
Knock Knock Lorraine Lévy
Transformers: The Last Knight Hot Rod (voice) Michael Bay
2018 Le flic de Belleville Sebastian Bouchard Rachid Bouchareb
Yao Seydou Tall Philippe Godeau
2019 Le Chant du loup D'Orsi Antonin Baudry
Arctic Dogs Leopold (voice) Aaron Woodley
ForesTiVi TV Series short (1 episode)
2020 The Call of the Wild Perrault Chris Sanders
Le prince oublié Le père / Le prince Michel Hazanavicius
Police Aristide
Refugee Marwan Brandt Andersen Short
Tout simplement noir Omar John Wax & Jean-Pascal Zadi Post-production
Soul Joe Gardner Pete Docter and Kemp Powers French dub
2021 Lupin Assane Diop / Paul Sernine / Arsène Lupin Netflix series[12]
2022 Jurassic World: Dominion Barry Colin Trevorrow Post-production
TBA Le Chat du Rabbin Le chat (voice) Joann Sfar Pre-production


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b c d e f Biography Archived 24 October 2015 at the Wayback Machine on Premiè
  3. ^ a b c d e Beardsley, Eleanor (28 June 2012). "In France, A Star Rises From An Oft-Neglected Place". National Public Radio. Archived from the original on 23 February 2015. Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  4. ^ a b c d "Omar Sy, den orörbara!" [Omar Sy, the untouchable!]. (in Swedish). 10 January 2013. Archived from the original on 17 November 2015. Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  5. ^ Lodge, Guy (3 December 2012). "Satellite Award noms run the gamut from 'Silver Linings Playbook' to 'Skyfall'". Archived from the original on 27 March 2013. Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  6. ^ Fritz, Ben (22 May 2014). "'X-Men: Days of Future Past': A Guide to the Mutants". Speakeasy blog. Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on 30 April 2015. Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  7. ^ Ouellette, Jennifer (3 December 2020). "Lupin trailer offers a fresh retelling of classic French gentleman thief". Ars Technica. Retrieved 5 December 2020.
  8. ^ {{Cite web |url= |title=In ‘Lupin,’ Omar Sy Puts a New Twist on a Classic French Tale |publisher=The New York Times |author=Elisabeth Vincentelli |date=January 14, 2021 |access-date=January 14, 2021
  9. ^ a b c "Omar Sy Et Sa Femme Helene : Un Couple Amoureux En 5 Infos" [Omar Sy and His Wife Helene: A Loving Couple — 5 Facts]. (in French). 22 June 2014. Archived from the original on 6 April 2015. Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  10. ^ "Sy on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 10 June 2017.
  11. ^ AlloCine. "Teaser Norm : Omar Sy prête sa voix à un ours polaire qui veut sauver sa banquise". Archived from the original on 1 July 2016. Retrieved 3 July 2016.
  12. ^ Han, Karen (29 September 2020). "The trailer for Netflix's Lupin introduces a new gentleman thief - Omar Sy stars in the upcoming live-action series". Polygon. Retrieved 29 September 2020.

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