Moonlight’s Mahershala Ali Is The First Muslim Actor To Win An Oscar


Mahershala Ali has won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role in ‘Moonlight‘, kicking the 89th Academy Awards off to a very good start.

Ali, who was born Mahershalalhashbaz Gilmore, is now the first ever Muslim actor to win an Oscar.

“I want to thank my teachers, my professors. I had so many wonderful teachers,” he said in his acceptance speech. “They taught me it wasn’t about you, it’s not about you, it’s about these characters. You are inservice to these stories and these characters.”

He also thanked his wife, Amatus Sami-Karim, who was in her third trimester during awards season and gave birth to their first child just four days ago.

Bari (Bar-ee) Najma Ali ??2/22/17 #pisces

A post shared by Mahershala Ali (@mahershalaali) on

Ali beat out Jeff Bridges (‘Hell or High Water‘), Lucas Hedges (‘Manchester by the Sea‘), Dev Patel (‘Lion‘) and Michael Shannon (‘Nocturnal Animals‘) for the win.

Check out all the winners here.

Photo: Getty / Kevin Winter.