About Alexander Siddig
Siddig El Tahir El Fadil El Siddig Abderrahman Mohammed Ahmed Abdel Karim El Mahdi (Arabic: صدّيق الطاهر الفاضل الصدّيق عبدالرحمن محمد أحمد عبدالكريم المهدي Ṣiddīq aṭ-Ṭāhir al-Fāḍil aṣ-Ṣiddīq ʿAbd ur-Raḥman Muḥammad ʾAḥmad ʿAbd ul-Karīm al-Mahdī; born 21 November 1965) is a Sudanese-born English actor, also known as Siddig El Fadil and his stage name Alexander Siddig. He is known for playing Dr. Julian Bashir in the television series Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and for his performances as Prince Nasir Al-Subaai in Syriana (2005) and as Imad ad-Din al-Isfahani in Kingdom of Heaven (2005). He has also guest starred on 24 as Hamri Al-Assad. Siddig co-starred in the award-winning film Cairo Time (2009) as Tareq Khalifa.
Siddig was born in Sudan but has spent most of his life in the United Kingdom. He was born to an English mother who worked as a theatrical consultant and a Sudanese father. His maternal uncle is English actor Malcolm McDowell, with whom he appeared in 2008 in Neil Marshall's Doomsday, and his paternal uncle is the former Sudanese Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi. He is also descended from Muhammad Ahmad Al-Mahdi. He attended St. Lawrence College, Ramsgate. He was credited under the shortened name Siddig El Fadil until October 1995, three seasons into his run on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, when he changed his stage name to the easier to pronounce (for English speakers) Alexander Siddig. On set, he became known as Sid. In 1996, Siddig and his co-star Nana Visitor started dating; their son, Django El Tahir El Siddig, was born on 16 September 1996, and the couple married on 14 June 1997. They divorced in 2001.
Siddig attended the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA) to study acting and after leaving LAMDA, Siddig did a season of stage work in Manchester. He also worked as a director in a small theatre in London. Siddig first appeared to television audiences as Prince Feisal in the 1990 TV sequel to Lawrence of Arabia titled A Dangerous Man: Lawrence After Arabia.
Siddig's performance in A Dangerous Man: Lawrence After Arabia (1992) brought him to the attention of Rick Berman who was creating the new series "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" (1993). Originally brought in to audition for the role of Captain Benjamin Sisko, Berman decided Siddig was too young for the role and cast him as Dr. Julian Bashir instead. The part had to be slightly rewritten for Siddig as the original "bible" had called for an Hispanic male to play the part, named Julian Amoros, although Berman reports that no other actors were considered for the role.
Since the end of the seven seasons of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Siddig has made prominent appearances in films and television. Highlights include guest-starring as an Algerian secret agent on the trail of Islamic extremists in the controversial episode "Nest of Angels" of the British television show Spooks (known as MI-5 in the US) in 2003. In 2005, he appeared as Saladin's aide, Imad, in Ridley Scott's film Kingdom of Heaven. He gave a critically lauded performance as Prince Nasir in Syriana, alongside George Clooney and Matt Damon. He played the title role in 2006's Hannibal - Rome's Worst Nightmare for the BBC (UK). Early 2007, Siddig joined the cast of Un Homme Perdu aka A Lost Man and he returned to American television in the role of former terrorist Hamri Al-Assad for the sixth season of 24. In 2009, he co-starred with Patricia Clarkson in the award-winning film Cairo Time (2009) as Tareq Khalifa, an Egyptian who battles his attraction to his friend's wife.
Siddig's roles have often called for him to act out many different accents: a Received Pronunciation accent (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine), a Cockney accent (Reign Of Fire), and an Algerian accent (Spooks), among others. He has also given performances in Arabic as the role required (Spooks, Syriana, 24, Un Homme Perdu) as well as French (Un Homme Perdu).
Siddig has picked up the role of Phillip Burton in sci-fi TV series Primeval.
In August 2010, he expressed his doubts about resurrecting Deep Space Nine, stating that he has "other ambitions".