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Famous Iranian Americans

Updated June 14, 2019 52k views154 items
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Some of the most famous actors, athletes, politicians, academics, journalists, and musicians are from Iranian decent. Some of these famous Persian-Americans immigrated to the US, while others are natural-born US citizens. A few of the names on this list have dual citizenship in both Iran and the United States. As of 2011, the US has the second-largest Iranian population outside of the nation of Iran, largely due to a sizable wave of immigration from Iran between the years 1980 and 1990 following the Iranian Revolution and the abolition of the Iranian monarchy. 

Who are some of the most famous Iranian-Americans? Adrian Pasdar tops our list. He's best known for his role as Jim Profit on the hit Fox TV series, Profit. He also has a recurring role Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, and has done a ton of voice-acting in some of Marvel's cartoon superhero stories. 

Check our our list of the most famous Iranian-Americans below, and be sure to let us know what you think in the comment section. 
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  • BirthplaceEuless, Texas, United States of America

    Actress.
    Aahoo Jahansouz "Sarah" Shahi (Persian: آهو جهانسوز سارا شاهی‎; born January 10, 1980) is an Iranian-American television actress and former NFL Cheerleader of Iranian and Spanish ancestry. She played...  more
  • BirthplaceLondon, England, UK

    Actress.
    Catherine Bell may refer to: Catherine Bell (religious studies scholar), American scholar of religious studies Catherine Bell (actress), American actress Catherine J. Bell, Canadian trade unionist...  more
  • BirthplaceTehran, Iran

    Actress, comedian.
    Nasim Pedrad (Persian: نسیم پدراد‎; born November 18, 1981) is an American actress and comedian best known for her five seasons as a cast member on Saturday Night Live from 2009 to 2014. She has...  more
  • BirthplaceNewport, Rhode Island, USA

    TV/soap opera actress.
    Nadia Alexandra Bjorlin (born August 2, 1980) is an American actress, singer, and model....  more
  • BirthplaceTehran, Iran

    Television and film actress.
    Nazanin Boniadi (; Persian: نازنین بنیادی‎ [nɑzæˈniːn bonjɑˈdiː]; (born 22 May 1979) is an Iranian-British actress and human rights defender....  more
  • Retired professional wrestler, better known by his stage name of The Iron Sheik.
    Hossein Khosrow Ali Vaziri (born March 15, 1943), better known by his ring name The Iron Sheik, is an Iranian-American former professional wrestler, amateur wrestler and actor. Vaziri is the...  more
  • BirthplaceTehran, Iran

    Academy Award-nominated film/television actress
    Shohreh Aghdashloo (born May 11, 1952) is an Iranian-American actress. Following numerous starring roles on the stage, her first major film role was in The Report (Gozāresh) (1977) directed by Abbas...  more
  • BirthplaceEngland, London

    Anchor of ABC Sunday morning political affairs program, former CNN chief international correspondent.
    Christiane Maria Heideh Amanpour ( (listen); Persian: كرستين امانپور‎, romanized: Kristiane Amānpur; born 12 January 1958) is a British-Iranian journalist and television host. Amanpour is the Chief...  more
  • BirthplaceTehran, Iran

    Comedian.
    Maziyar "Maz" Jobrani (Persian: مازیار جبرانی‎; born February 26, 1972) is an Iranian-American comedian and actor who is part of the "Axis of Evil" comedy group. The group appeared on a comedy...  more
  • BirthplacePittsfield, Massachusetts, United States of America

    Actor.
    Adrian Pasdar (born April 30, 1965) is an American actor and voice artist. He is known for playing Jim Profit on the TV series Profit, for his roles in Near Dark, Carlito's Way, Mysterious Ways and...  more
  • Max Amini

    Age: 40

    BirthplaceTucson, Arizona, United States of America

    Comedian.
    Max Amini (Persian: مکس امینی‎, Persian pronunciation: [mæks æmiːniː] born in Tucson, Arizona) is an Iranian American comedian. He is bilingual in English and Persian. Max Amini was born in Tucson...  more
  • BirthplaceMinneapolis, Minnesota, United States of America

    Professional wrestler and manager, better known by his stage names of Sheik Abdul Bashir or simply Daivari.
    Dara Shawn Daivari (Persian: دارا داوری‎) (born April 30, 1984) is an American professional wrestler currently signed to WWE as a producer. He is best known for his work with World Wrestling...  more
  • BirthplaceParis, France

    Founder of e-Bay.
    Pierre Morad Omidyar (Persian: پیر مراد امیدیار‎, Persian pronunciation: [piːjeɾ moɾɑːd omiːdjɑːɾ] born June 21, 1967) is an American billionaire entrepreneur and philanthropist. He is the founder of...  more
  • BirthplaceTehran, Iran

    Actress.
    Bahar Soomekh (Persian: بهار سومخ‎, born March 30, 1975) is an American actress. She is best known for her roles in Crash and the Saw franchise....  more
  • BirthplaceMashhad, Iran

    Cofounder, Prodea systems, Inc.
    Anousheh Ansari (Persian: Anuŝe Ansāri‎; née Raissyan; born September 12, 1966) is an Iranian-American engineer and co-founder and chairwoman of Prodea Systems. Her previous business accomplishments...  more
  • BirthplaceFresno, California

    Voice of America employee, former Director of Public Relations for the Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans (PAAIA), former FOX news anchor, former CNN anchor.
    Rudabeh “Rudi” Bakhtiar is a producer for Reuters in Washington, D.C. She is likely best known for anchoring CNN Headline News Tonight, a prime-time national three-hour news cast in the United...  more
  • BirthplaceTehran, Iran

    Stanford University Professor.
    Maryam Mirzakhani (Persian: مریم میرزاخانی‎, pronounced [mæɾˈjæm miːɾzɑːxɑːˈniː]; 12 May 1977 – 14 July 2017) was an Iranian mathematician and a professor of mathematics at Stanford University. Her...  more
  • Rosie Malek-Yonan

    Age: 56

    BirthplaceTehran, Iran

    Author of The Crimson Field; Actress, director, and documentary filmmaker.
    Rosie Malek-Yonan (b. July 4, 1965) is an Assyrian-American actress, author, director, public figure and activist. Malek-Yonan became a noted pianist at an early age. Having graduated from the...  more
  • Stand-up comedian.
    Dan Ahdoot (Persian: دن آهدوت‎; Hebrew: דאן אהדוות‎) is a stand-up comedian who primarily performs in New York City. He is well known for being a contestant on season two of NBC's reality TV show...  more
  • Reza Aslan

    Age: 49

    BirthplaceTehran, Iran

    Writer.
    Reza Aslan (Persian: رضا اصلان‎, IPA: [ˈɾezɒː æsˈlɒːn]; born May 3, 1972) is an Iranian-American scholar of religious studies, writer, and television host. He has written three books on religion: No...  more
  • BirthplaceJerusalem, Mandatory Palestine

    Fashion designer.
    Elie Tahari is an Israeli-American luxury fashion designer of men and women's clothing. Elie Tahari, Ltd., the company he founded, has annual revenue of more than $500 million....  more
  • BirthplaceTehran, Iran

    Champion poker player.
    Antonio "The Magician" Esfandiari (Persian: امیر اسفندیاری‎; born December 8, 1978 as Amir Esfandiary), is a professional poker player and former professional magician, known for his elaborate chip...  more
  • BirthplaceTehran, Iran

    Soccer coach, former assistant coach of Korea Republic national football team, Los Angeles Galaxy and Iran national team.
    Afshin Ghotbi' (Persian: افشین قطبی‎, born 8 February 1964 in Tehran, Iran) is an Iranian American football coach....  more
  • BirthplaceWashington, D.C.

    Keyboard player of Vampire Weekend, music producer.
    Rostam Batmanglij (born November 28, 1983), known mononymously as Rostam, is an American songwriter, composer, producer, and multi-instrumentalist of electro-soul group Discovery, and formerly of New...  more
  • Amir Mokri

    Age: 65

    BirthplaceIran

    Director of photography.
    Amir M. Mokri (Persian: امیر مکری‎; born June 11, 1956) is an Iranian-American cinematographer known for his work on blockbuster action films such films as Bad Boys II, Fast & Furious, Man of Steel...  more