Egyptian actor Salah El Saadany dies aged 80

Stars such as Mohamed Sobhy, Youssra and Mohamed Hamaki lead tributes to screen veteran

Salah El Saadany had reportedly been suffering from poor health for more than a decade. AFP
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Tributes are being shared for renowned Egyptian actor Salah El Saadany, who died aged 80. The news of his death was announced by Ashraf Zaki, head of the Egyptian Actors Syndicate, on Friday.

Since the announcement, celebrities from the Arab world have taken to social media to express their condolences and pay tribute to his illustrious career.

Fellow Egyptian actor Mohamed Sobhy tweeted that he was mourning the loss of his "best friend and best support", and revealed how El Saadany had always encouraged him at the beginning of his career. He also remarked that even though El Saadany was gone, his artistic works would remain.

Pop star Mohamed Hamaki uploaded a photo of the actor, sharing his condolences. Egyptian actress and singer Youssra expressed a similar sentiment and also apologised for not being able to attend his funeral as she was not in Egypt.

The Egyptian football club Al Ahly shared a post mourning his death, calling him a "great artist".

Nicknamed "Omda", El Saadany was born on October 23, 1943, in Giza. He came from a family with a notable cultural background. As a student, he joined a variety of amateur theatre troupes, even performing with fellow talent Adel Imam on the university stage.

El Saadany initially began his career in theatre and radio, but eventually made his way to films and television. In the 1970s and 1980s, he became a household name thanks to roles in TV shows such as Oghnia Ala Al-Mamar (A Song on the Passage, 1972), Shelet El Moshaghbeen (The Troublemakers, 1973), Le piege (1982), and the long-running series Layali Al-Helmaya, which he appeared on from 1985 to 1990.

Throughout his five-decade-long career, El Saadany appeared in countless radio series, more than 20 plays, 70 films, and numerous television shows. Notable other series include Abnaee al-A’izaa Shokran (Thank You My Dear Children, 1979), Arabesque (1994) and Helm al-Ganouby (My Southern Dream, 1997).

Since 2013, his health began to deteriorate, and El Saadany spent most of his days at home in bed. His last work was a leading role in the TV series Al-Qasirat (The Minors, 2013). His son, Ahmed, is also an actor.

Updated: April 20, 2024, 6:39 AM