- Studied mathematics and physics in college, then worked for his family's lumber business after graduating.
- Began acting in Egyptian movies in 1954; costarred with wife Faten Hamama in several films.
- Became an international star after appearing in his first English-language film, Lawrence of Arabia (1962), for which he received an Oscar nomination; followed by such blockbusters as Doctor Zhivago (1965) and Funny Girl (1968).
- An expert at bridge; played bridge professionally and wrote several books about the game.
- Was awarded the inaugural Sergei Eisenstein Medal by UNESCO in 2005, for his contributions to world film and cultural diversity.
- 1963, Golden Globe — New Star of the Year - Actor: Winner
- 1963, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture: Winner
- 1966, Golden Globe — Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama: Winner
- 1962, Oscar — Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role: Nominee
- 0, — :
- 2003, Venice Film Festival — Lifetime Achievement: Winner
- Faten Hamama — Ex-wife
- Tarek Sharif — Son
- Joseph Shalhoub — Father
- Claire (Saada) Shalhoub — Mother
- Cairo University, Giza, Egypt
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