Debbouze, from the Paris Suburbs to the Elysée

Jamal Debbouze comes from the suburbs of Paris, more precisely from the Yvelines, where he grew up in a modest family that had immigrated to France from Taza. And, like other children of poor immigrants, he led a noisy, adventurous and foolish life, the price of which he paid for by having his arm amputated, as he was seriously injured in an accident while trying to cross the railways.

Jamal Al Debbouze did not like school very much. He often skipped classes that he found far too serious and boring. He only liked himself during art and theatre classes, which he followed with love and passion. He succeeded in showing real talent, which led one of his teachers to compare him to Charlie Chaplin.

Debbouze found himself in comedy and theatre. His disability, which totally turned his life upside down, did not prevent him from taking up all the challenges in order to achieve his ultimate goal, to touch the hearts of the French public. On several occasions, this audience has put him in the front row, in opinion polls concerning the most popular actors, thus opening the doors of fame, just like those of the Elysée, without forgetting the heart of Melissa Theuriau, the star of the French press, whom he married later on.

The love Jamal has for Morocco has remained firmly rooted in his heart, although he was not born there. He has managed to be the best ambassador of his country in France and throughout the world, to the point that he has been able to win the friendship of King Mohammed VI, thanks to his many charitable initiatives; a friendship that has opened all the doors for him to organize the Festival of Laughter in Marrakech, this major event that contributes to the promotion of tourism, economy and culture in Morocco.

Debbouze has exceled in many comedies, series and one man shows, but it is in the cinema that he will shine the most, in roles where he will show exceptional talent, the most famous of which is his role in Asterix and Obelix by Alain Chabat, a French-Algerian Jewish director, a film that has broken all records in cinemas in France. His role in the historical film Indigènes, which deals with the history of North African soldiers who fought alongside France in the war against Nazism, and where he played with Samy Naceri, Roschdy Zem and Sami Bouajila, allowing him to win the prize for best male role at the Cannes International Film Festival.

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