Omar Sharif, 1932-2015

Why Evolution Is True

by Greg Mayer

Omar Sharif, the Egyptian film star, bridge master, and bon vivant, died earlier today in Cairo. The cause, at age 83, was a heart attack. Beginning as a star of Egyptian cinema, he became a figure of worldwide fame, starring in major roles in both British and American films. Two roles, especially, defined his acting greatness– as Sherif Ali ibn Kharish of the Harith in Lawrence of Arabia, and as the Russian poet-physician Yuri Zhivago in Doctor Zhivago. Both historical epics were directed by David Lean, and he starred in a number of other historical dramas (e.g. Night of the Generals), but also played very different roles, such as Nicky Arnstein, the singing love interest of Fanny Brice in the musical Funny Girl . (He also became the offscreen love interest of Barbra Streisand, who played Fanny). He continued acting until…

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