Adel Imam (sometimes credited as: Adel Emam), (Arabic: عادل إمام), born May 17, 1940ج in El Mansoura (المنصورة), is a popular Egyptian movie and stage actor. He is primarily a comedian, but he has starred in more serious works and, especially in his earlier films, has combined comedy with romance.
He earned a Bachelor's Degree in Agriculture from Cairo University. Since then he has appeared in over 100 movies and 10 plays. He is probably the most famous actor in Egypt or the Arab world. He has received critical and popular praise throughout his career. Short, slight, and with a face seemingly more appropriate for a supporting actor than a leading man—let alone a star whose career has flourished since the late sixties—Adel Imam is able to portray characters from all social levels and backgrounds.
His roles have displayed a wide range of humour including slapstick, farce, and even the occasional double entendre. His characters tend to be down on their luck rising above powerful outside pressures. This has proved an extremely resilient type in Egypt.
In January 2000, the United Nations appointed him as a Goodwill Ambassador for UNHCR. Since then, he has worked tirelessly for the cause of refugees. He has been cast several times by the producer Emad Adeeb in movies like Morgan Ahmed Morgan and Hassan and Marcus.
In 2005, he starred in Sifaara fil'Aimara (Embassy in the Building), playing a Cairene everyman inconvenienced when the Embassy of Israel moves into his apartment building.
In 2006, he appeared as one of the many stars of The Yacoubian Building, a film reputed to be the highest-budgeted in Egyptian cinema and adapted from the novel of the same name. The story is a sharp look at contemporary Egyptian life through the prism of a faded downtown Cairo apartment building. Emam portrays an aging roué whose misadventures form a central strand of the film's complex narrative.