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5 Muslims In Pop Culture That Reza Aslan Thinks You Should Know About

"I mean, dude c’mon. We’ve got a Muslim in Star Wars."

Posted on December 2, 2016, at 4:14 p.m. ET

This week on new BuzzFeed podcast See Something Say Something, host Ahmed Ali Akbar invited scholar of religion and cultural commentator Reza Aslan to talk about growing up Iranian in the '80s, cable news, and pop culture.

You may remember Reza's infamous interviews on CNN and Fox News, where he got asked questions like "Does Islam promote violence?"


However, he told us he's done with all that.

Can't stop laughing at this story @rezaaslan told me about the moment he realized he was done with cable news

Instead, he's working more on storytelling. And so we asked him — which Muslims in pop culture tell their stories best right now?

Kate Bubacz

Aslan himself has several pop culture projects in the works, including an upcoming sitcom on ABC and an executive producer role (and episode!) on mini-documentary series, The Secret Life of Muslims.

1. "Iqbal Theba is doing a marvelous job of integrating his Muslim identity into pop culture."


Theba most famously plays Principal Figgins on Glee.

2. "G. Willow Wilson is obviously a great author...and what she’s doing with (Pakistani-American superhero) Ms. Marvel…it’s unprecedented."

Marcy J Cook

3. Hasan Minhaj is killing it on The Daily Show, and is probably poised to become a major star. He’s somebody who is very real and honest about his Muslim identity."

Comedy Central

4. "Aasif Mandvi's new showtime show, Fatwa, is gonna be fantastic. It’s dealing with these ideas and stereotypes about Islam and figuring out ways to turn them on their head."

Chronicle Books LLC

Riz Ahmed. I mean, dude c’mon. We’ve got a Muslim in Star Wars."


Ahmed will be playing Bodhi Rook in Rogue One.

How to listen:

1. Search for See Something Say Something in your podcast app of choice, such as Overcast, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, Acast, or Apple’s built-in Podcasts app.

2. Or click the above embedded link to stream the show directly from this page.

Be sure to subscribe, so you never miss a new episode!

If you like the show, please rate and review it on iTunes. Questions? Comments? Email

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.