LOS ANGELES: Born in Saudi Arabia to a Lebanese father and a Northern Irish mother, actress Natacha Karam is making a name for herself in Hollywood as a character on “9-1-1 Lone Star,” the latest series created by multiple Emmy and Golden Globe winning writer Ryan Murphy.
The drama follows the heroics and personal lives of firefighters and other emergency responders such as Karam’s Marjan Marwani, a firefighter and devout Muslim from Miami who was drafted to Firehouse 126 in Austin, Texas, by Captain Owen Strand (Rob Lowe) after he saw her heroics on Instagram.
“Marjan is a hijabi and she is a firefighter. So that’s certainly something which has not been seen before,” said Karam to Arab News, adding “I love that I get the opportunity to be one of the first women to play that role on TV.”
The 27-year-old acts alongside the likes of “Lord of the Rings” actress Liv Tyler and “Aladdin” star Mena Massoud, who plays her fiancé.
As the series approaches its third season premiere, she was able to give Arab News an exclusive preview of what is in store for fans.
“A few of the main characters are going to end up in the hospital. I can’t say anything more than that. And a relationship is going to go through a tumultuous patch,” she revealed.
Born in Jeddah, Karam grew up between Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain and Dubai, where she began acting.
After moving to Los Angeles, her television career kicked off with small acting stints on “Homeland” and “Silent Witness,” before she was cast as Sergeant Jasmine “Jaz” Khan in the military action drama series “The Brave,” which ran for one season.
Now with a platform in Hollywood, her goal is to play characters that challenge audience expectations and generalizations.
“I’d like ‘Lone Star’ to keep going and going and for Marjan‘s character to become more and more fleshed out. In between seasons, I would love to play more characters that are breaking stereotypes,” Karam said.
“I tend to choose parts that change people’s perspectives and show people that there isn’t only one way to be a woman, and there isn’t an only one way to be a Muslim woman or an Arab woman. I find that really exciting and rewarding,” she added.