BY RAYNALD C RIVERA
DOHA: Laughter plays an important role in bridging cultural differences and providing understanding, tolerance, appreciation and acceptance, said Hollywood comedian Ahmed Ahmed (pictured).
“Laughter is a common language of the world, it’s like music or food; every body likes to laugh. As Martin Luther King said: ‘If you can’t laugh at life, you’re a miserable human being,’” explained Ahmed.
Ahmed was in Doha to feature in a Qatar Foundation event called ‘Karak Talks’ performing a routine, talking about TEDxDoha and the Doha Tribeca Film Festival (DTFF) happening next month and hosting an Open Mic Stand-up Comedy competition.
“The Open Mic Comedy competition will find the funniest Qatari who will come with us in our Middle East Tour to 10 countries this coming November,” said Ahmed.
Born in Egypt and raised in the US, Ahmed moved to Hollywood at the age of 19 to pursue a career in acting attending the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.
He appeared in films and TV shows such as Iron Man, You don’t Mess with the Zohan, Wild West Comedy show, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Axis of Evil Comedy Tour, Swingers, Roseanne and The View among others.
Recently he can be seen in the film City of Life, the first feature film shot entirely in Dubai.
His directorial debut Just Like Us which is a documentary film features him and a host of critically acclaimed comedians from around the world taking stand-up comedy to the Arab world from Dubai, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Egypt and showcasing to the world that Arabs love to laugh just like any person in any part of the world.
Ahmed said the comedians in Just Like Us come from various nationalities including Arabs, Italians, Greeks, African-Americas, making Just Like Us an international community of comedians.
Just Like Us will premiere in the coming DTFF 2010 and Ahmed is upbeat about the festival especially with the many events in store in the festival such as workshops and talks. “I’m really honoured and privileged to be part of this festival on every scale. I’m grateful to Sheikha Mayassa and Amanda Palmer who collaboratively put this vision together to place Doha on the map for filmmaking and the arts, a very powerful platform,” he said.