Ramy Youssef explains how TV’s lack of diversity puts viewers in ‘an unfair position’
In her conversation with “Ramy” cast members Ramy Youssef, May Calamawy, Laith Nakli and Steve Way for the Paley Center for Media’s Paley Front Row series, moderator and Times TV critic Lorraine Ali asks Youssef, the creator of the Hulu comedy series, whether he still feels the same pressure to represent Arabs and Muslims on TV in Season 2:
The audience is in a really unfair situation. There are so many Arabic-speaking and so many Muslim people, and under the umbrella of “Muslim” there are a lot of different nationalities and there’s just so much diversity there, right? And so when you look at our show being the only show currently — and in certain boxes, the first — to look at these issues head-on in the Western media landscape, the audience is in an unfair position, because they’ve been waiting for something. They’ve only had “24" and “Aladdin.” The carpet flew, but God forbid he’d pray on it. There’s a real gap.
Watch the complete conversation below to hear more about Way’s 20-year friendship with Youssef, Calamawy’s Middle Eastern upbringing and Nakli’s character, Uncle Naseem. And be sure to read our interview with Youssef and Season 2 co-star Mahershala Ali.
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