Toronto is truly the "Hollywood of the North". Huge blockbusters and award-winning films and have been filmed there, including Suicide Squad and Room; the latter of which was Best Picture at the Oscars in 2015. The hit TV series Suits is famously shot in Toronto as well. And Rachel McAdams, Oscar nominee and Hollywood sweetheart, is a York University alumnus.
Now we can add another Torontonian to the list. Markham, Ont. native Mena Massoud has been announced to play the lead role in Disney's upcoming live-action Aladdin remake. The Egyptian-born actor, who currently has a recurring role in the Amazon series Jack Ryan, was picked out of 2,000 hopefuls who auditioned with him.
The craziest part? Massoud is actually a recent graduate of Ryerson University, so before all this news, he was wandering the streets of Toronto just like any one of us. It's crazy how fast a single moment can change a life.
Mena Massoud announced as Aladdin, Naomi Scott as Jasmine, and Will Smith as Genie in live-action Aladdin! #D23Expo
Massoud will be acting alongside Naomi Scott, who was cast to play as Jasmine. Scott was recently in the Power Rangers reboot as Kimberly, the Pink Ranger.