Fallen Star:The death of actor Ahmed Mazhar
Egypt, People, 5/11/2002
The death of actor Ahmed Mazhar (b. 8 October 1917) early yesterday morning put an end to a rich career that began with his graduation from the Military Academy in 1937.
Among his colleagues were future presidents Gamal Abdel-Nasser and Anwar El-Sadat, and, a member of the Nasser-led Free Officer's Movement, he would maintain a positive relationship with the July Revolution for a long time. A cavalry officer, he was appointed head of the Cavalry School in 1952.
Mazhar's first appearance on screen was in 1951, in the film Zuhour Al-Islam (The Rise of Islam), but he did not devote himself to cinema until 1957, when he appeared in Rudda Qalbi (Return My Heart), a pro-Revolution classic based on the novel by fellow cavalry officer and minister of culture Youssef El-Seba'i.
Of his 91 films, Do'aa Al-Karawan (The Nightingale's Song, 1959), based on the novel by Taha Hussien, Al-Aidi Al-Na'ima (Delicate Hands, 1963), based on the play by Tawfik El-Hakim and Youssef Chahine's historical film Al-Nasser Salaheddin (Saladin, 1963) are among the best remembered.
In addition Mazhar contributed to television and theatre, directed two films and worked as a script writer. He received many awards, starting in 1959 and till the end of his life.
During his later years Mazhar led a secluded, religious life, suffering from depression and increasingly life-threatening illness.
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