15 Celebrities You Didn’t Know Have ARAB Roots

By Krystal Brown

Embark on a fascinating journey to discover the unexpected arab lineage of renowned celebrities!

Steve Jobs

Image Credit: Shutterstock

Abdulfattah John Jandali, the biological father of the late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, hailed from Syria, adding an intriguing Middle Eastern connection to the remarkable story of one of the most influential figures in technology history. Jandali’s Syrian heritage underscores the diverse and global influences that played a role in shaping the legacy of Steve Jobs and the groundbreaking innovations of Apple.

Gigi Hadid

Image Credit: Shutterstock

Gigi Hadid, renowned for her exceptional modeling career, has not only achieved great success but has also helped raise the profile of Arab Americans globally, emerging as one of the highest-paid models in the industry. Moreover, Gigi has fearlessly used her influential platform to voice her support against notable events such as Trump’s Muslim Ban and Israel’s 2014 assault on Gaza, demonstrating her dedication to raising awareness and advocating for important causes.

Jade Thirlwall

Image Credit: Wirestock via DepositPhotos.com

Jade Thirlwall, a singer and songwriter who rose to fame through her involvement in the popular girl group Little Mix, carries Yemeni and Egyptian heritage from her mother’s side. In her earlier years, Jade openly shared her struggles with embracing her Middle Eastern roots. In an interview with BBC UK, she expressed her journey of self-identification, stating, “I’d identify myself as mixed-race; if I delved deeper, I’d say of Arab heritage, I guess. I’ve had an inner battle of not knowing where I fit in or what larger community I fit into.” However, Jade is now actively seeking to reconcile with her Arab heritage and proudly embrace it, demonstrating her personal growth and evolving sense of cultural identity.

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson

Image Credit: Shutterstock

The popular actor and former professional wrestler, Dwayne Johnson, has Samoan and African-American ancestry but also has Arab American roots through his father, who is of Black Nova Scotian and Lebanese descent.

Salma Hayek

Image Credit: Shutterstock

The talented actress, who hails from Mexican and Lebanese backgrounds, has made a significant impact through her outstanding performances in films like Fools Rush In, Frida, and Wild Wild West. With a career spanning since 1989, she has consistently showcased her acting prowess and captivated audiences. Beyond her achievements on the screen, she has also become an advocate for various causes, including refugees, victims of domestic abuse, and immigrant rights. Her dedication to using her platform for social activism adds another layer of inspiration to her multifaceted career, making her a role model for many.

Jerry Seinfeld

Image Credit: Shutterstock

Jerry Seinfeld, the beloved American stand-up comedian, actor, and filmmaker, has a fascinating Syrian connection through his maternal lineage. His mother’s Syrian descent adds a unique cultural dimension to Seinfeld’s identity. While widely recognized for his iconic sitcom “Seinfeld” and his enduring influence on comedy, it’s intriguing to note the Syrian roots that contribute to his heritage.

Shannon Elizabeth

Image Credit: Popularimages via DepositPhotos.com

The talented actress, widely recognized for her memorable performances in ‘American Pie’ (1999) and ‘Scary Movie’ (2000), boasts a rich heritage stemming from her father’s Syrian and Lebanese roots.

Wentworth Miller

Image Credit: Shutterstock

The versatile star known for his role in Prison Break boasts a rich and diverse heritage. With his father’s background encompassing African-American, Jamaican, German, and English ancestry, and his mother’s lineage comprising Russian, Dutch, French, Syrian, and Lebanese roots, he has a multifaceted cultural background. Despite having a small amount of Arab heritage, he maintains a connection to the Arab community, highlighting the inclusivity and diversity within his identity. T


Image Credit: everett225 via DepositPhotos.com

Shakira, the renowned singer of the hit song ‘Waka Waka,’ embraces her dual heritage as she proudly represents her Lebanese and Colombian roots. With her father’s Lebanese background, Shakira consistently celebrates her Arab heritage through various means, including her distinctive zaghrouta tongue roll, captivating belly dancing, and even through her Arabic song ‘Ojos Asi’ (Eyes Like Those)

Jenna Dewan

Image Credit: Popularimages via DepositPhotos.com

With Lebanese ancestry tracing back to her father’s side, the talented American actress and dancer, Jenna Dewan, has left an indelible mark on the entertainment industry. Recognized for her standout performance in the 2006 film ‘Step Up,’ Dewan’s impressive career also includes notable work as a backup dancer for renowned artists like Janet Jackson, Christina Aguilera, Pink, and Missy Elliott, showcasing her exceptional talent and versatility.

Paula Abdul

Image Credit: Jean_Nelson via DepositPhotos.com

Paula Abdul, widely recognized as a versatile artist in the entertainment world, has a rich heritage rooted in her father’s Syrian Jewish background. Known for her talents as a singer, choreographer, and TV personality, Abdul has left an indelible mark on popular shows such as ‘American Idol,’ ‘The X Factor,’ and ‘So You Think You Can Dance.’ Her diverse cultural background further adds to the depth and breadth of her contributions to the industry, solidifying her status as a multi-talented and influential figure in the world of entertainment.

Zoe Saldana

Image Credit: Shutterstock

Zoe Saldana, an accomplished dancer and actress, has garnered widespread recognition for her roles in blockbuster films such as Avatar, Avengers: Infinity War, and Avengers: Endgame, making her the second highest-grossing film actress of all time in 2019. Proudly embracing her Lebanese heritage from her paternal side, Saldana wears her cultural roots with pride, evident in her Arabic tattoo that reportedly reads, “I want to ask her” (أريد أن أسألها). Her representation and success in the entertainment industry serve as a source of pride for the Arab community, inspiring a sense of cultural identity and celebration.

FEMALE Movie Characters That Were Clearly Written to Attract Male ATTENTION!

Image Credit: Shutterstock

In the world of cinema, there exists a collection of female characters who were undeniably crafted with the explicit purpose of capturing and captivating male attention, transcending the boundaries of their narratives.

Lost Faith: Celebrities Abandoning Their Roots for New Religions

Image Credit: Shutterstock

It’s a really big deal when converting to a new religion, both personally and culturally. When you decide to follow any religion, it is a deeply personal choice and it is one that these celebrities didn’t take lightly.

Reel Remorse: Actors Who Regretted Saying ‘No’ to Career-Defining Roles

Image Credit: Shutterstock

Join us as we delve into the stories of talented actors who still carry the weight of their decisions, forever haunted by the roles they let slip away.

Heartbreak and Loss, Celebrities Who Faced the Tragic Loss of Their Children

Image Credit: Shutterstock

It is extremely painful to lose a loved one, but when it comes to losing a child, the pain hits even harder and deeper. Things are never the same again. Knowing that there are celebrities who have gone through this, just goes to show that they’re human, too, and they experience awful things just like us.

From Stardom to Starflops: Catastrophic Movies That Obliterated Actors’ Careers

Image Credit: imagepressagency via DepositPhotos.com

Join us on a bumpy ride through the dark corners of Hollywood as we explore the ten movies that wreaked havoc on the careers of unsuspecting actors, leaving them desperately searching for their next big break.