5 Dec – One would think that after starring as the titular character in one of the highest-grossing movies of 2019, Egyptian-Canadian actor Mena Massoud would be entering a whole new world of acting opportunities and job offers.
According to what the "Aladdin" star revealed recently, however, he's not living in that magical world.
"I'm kind of tired of staying quiet about it," he told The Daily Beast. "I want people to know that it's not always dandelions and roses when you're doing something like "Aladdin".
"'He must have made millions. He must be getting all these offers.' It's none of those things. I haven't had a single audition since "Aladdin" came out."
While the 28-year-old does have a few titles released or releasing post-"Aladdin", such as "Strange But True" and "Lamya's Poem", those were all roles he landed prior to the Disney gig.
Another case in point is his latest TV series, Hulu's "Reprisal", in which he plays the lead character Ethan Hart. At the time of his audition, the show's creator Josh Corbin had no clue he was even starring in the back-then yet-to-be-released "Aladdin".
"I'm an up and comer in the sense that I've been doing this for 10 years, but to a lot of people, "Aladdin's" the first thing they've seen me in. So I think I'm going to be viewed that way for a long time. I'm going to have to work at chipping away at that," he added.
Born in Egypt but raised in Canada since his parents migrated there when he was about 3 years old, Massoud has spent a long time trying to break through into the entertainment industry but most of the roles that tend to get offered to him are terrorists.
He also has to fight to gain access to audition rooms, where most of the hopefuls auditioning are white actors.
In a previous interview with Samaritanmag, the actor stated, ""Even though I'm very fortunate and grateful to have played Aladdin, there were still four, five casting directors who never gave me a shot in Toronto."
It was because of this that he launched the Ethnically Diverse Artists Foundation, or EDA Foundation, back in October to support emerging artists facing the same casting problems he faced, by providing them with "tools to reach key casting directors, agents and managers to break into the industry".