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Mahershala Ali’s Wife Amatus Sami-Karim

Meet Amatus Sami-Karim, wife of 2017 best supporting actor Oscar winner Mahershala Ali.


Mahersala and Amatus first met as students at New York University. After Amatus’ brother was killed in a tragic Chicago shooting incident, Mahershala and Amatus grew closer to each other and their relationship quickly took off because Mahersala was a source of comfort for her during tragedy.

After dating and knowing each other for about 17 years, the couple finally got married in 2013.

The 43-year-old Ali and wife Amatus welcomed their first child this past Wednesday, a daughter named Bari Najma Ali.

Amatus-sami-Karim spent the earlier years of her life in the South Side of Chicago across the street from the Cabrini Green Projects in her father’s Mosque.

A graduate of Tisch School of the Arts and one year at RADA in acting, Amatus’ debut EP Broken Compass, has been featured in tastemaker blogs such as Pigeons and Planes, Afro Punk, Obscure Sound, Hollywood Playlist, OkayPlayer, and The Source just to name a few.

Her film composition for, “Daisy and Max”, a documentary for Al-Jazeera America, aired in December 2015. She composed the music for Dominique Morrisseau’s Obie Award winning play “Sunset Baby” for the Labyrinth Theater Company, among others. Amatus has also collaborated with artists Meshell Ndegeocello, Roy Hargrove, Jneiro Jarel as well as scored projects for PBS, Georgia Shakespeare Festival, 651 Arts, POV, Ford Foundation, and Rooftop Films.

Mahershala Ali, born Eric Gilmore, is a Muslim actor and member of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. Ali began his career as a regular on series such as Crossing Jordan and Threat Matrix before his breakthrough role as Richard Tyler in the science-fiction series The 4400. His first major film release was in the 2008 David Fincher-directed romantic fantasy drama film The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and his other notable films include Predators, The Place Beyond the Pines, Free State of Jones, Hidden Figures and as Boggs in The Hunger Games series. Ali is also known for his roles in the Netflix series House of Cards as Remy Danton and as Cornell ‘Cottonmouth’ Stokes in Luke Cage.

For his performance as mentor and drug dealer Juan in Moonlight (2016), Ali received universal acclaim from critics and won the Academy Award, the SAG Award, Critics’ Choice Award for Best Supporting Actor and the 2017 Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.

Photo Source/Credit: Amatus Sami-Karim

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