Mahershala Ali

Mahershala Ali Becomes the First Muslim to Win an Acting Oscar

Mahershala Ali made history by becoming the first Muslim to win an acting Oscar as he was honoured with the best supporting actor trophy for his riveting turn as an empathetic drug dealer, who takes a fatherless young boy under his wing in “Moonlight.

Ali, 43, is only in the first third of “Moonlight” but his quiet yet powerful performance as Juan has made his presence felt throughout the Barry Jenkin’s directed coming- of-age gay drama, even long after his character departs the story.

He was presented the ceremony’s first trophy by last year’s best supporting actress winner, Alicia Vikander. “My grandma would want me to button up. Wow,” began the actor amid a standing ovation from the Hollywood audience.

Other nominees in the category were Indian-British actor Dev Patel (“Lion”), Jeff Bridges (“Hell or High Water”), Lucas Hedges (“Manchester by the Sea” and Michael Shannon (“Nocturnal Animals”).

 

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