Earlier this week, Egypt was shaken by the loss of one of Egyptian cinema’s most influential actors, Ezzat Abou Aouf, who died after a long illness. After debuting in 1992 in the musical Ice Cream in Gleam, his characters over the following years in more than 100 works of cinema, theatre and television, have made us laugh and cry, especially through his many portrayals of all too believable father figures. To pay tribute to his unparalleled contribution to the Egyptian entertainment industry, we have compiled a list of some of his most memorable and timeless roles. 

Ice Cream fe Gleam, 1992: 

The film starred Amr Diab as Saif, an ambitious musician who dreams of making it big, and travels from Alexandria to Cairo to seek his fame. Entering as the unexpected heartthrob, Abou Aouf, playing Adham, sweeps Saif’s love interest off her feet. 

Abood Ala El Hodood (Abood at the Border), 1999:

This film submerged us in the dingy world of drugs and crime, with Abou Aouf playing Tommy, a notorious drug dealer running a shady drug plantation in Sinai. Although the rest of the cast were invaluable, much of the drama and power of the plot came from Abou Aouf’s strong performance throughout. 

Awdet Al Nadla (The return of the scum), 2006: 

In this movie, Abou Aouf played Hany, the character we just loved to hate. He abandons his wife and child to a life of poverty while he acquires wealth and riches. Abou Aouf convincingly showed us the dark and selfish side of human beings.

Matab Sena’y (Speedbump), 2006:

In this romantic comedy, Abou Aouf played Farouk, a rich man who lives a luxurious life along with his daughter until one of the people working in his company decides to take his place by force, and ends up putting Abou Aouf in a coma. Unlike some of his more serious roles, this film definitely had us laughing up until the final credits. 

45 Yom (45 Days), 2007: 

This stands out as one of Abou Aouf’s most outstanding, yet shocking, roles throughout his long career. Revolving around a rich family, this movie tells the story of the protagonist Ahmed Ezz El Deen, played by Ahmed El Fishawy, who is destroying his life by his own hands. Abou Aouf played the role of Ezz El Deen, a cruel and stubborn father, constantly conflicted about how to be a respected patriarchal figure. This complex character will go down in history as one of the greats. 

Wahed Men El Nas (One of the People), 2007

Taking us on an unnerving emotional rollercoaster, this movie includes everything, from murder to revenge, to heartbreak and everything in between. Abou Aouf’s stunning portrayal of Kamal Abu El Azm, the protective father willing to protect his son at any cost, was central to the endless circle of vengeance that the plot revolves around. 

Omar we Salma 1, 2 & 3, 2007, 2009 & 2012: 

Playing the role of Roshdy, a widowed rich father living with his corrupt son Omar, Abou Aouf showed once again the complexity of emotions that fathers feel towards their children. In this acclaimed trilogy, he plays the role of a loving father who, despite his son being a troublemaker, only wishes to see him become a responsible husband to his wife. 

Ramadan Mabrook Abul Alamin Hammouda, 2008: 

Again, taking on the father role, Abou Aouf played the Minister of Education, who struggles to point his son in the right direction. The relationship between father and son was put under the spotlight like never before in this fantastic film.