Entertainment & Arts

Omar Sharif has Alzheimer's disease

Omar Sharif
Image caption Omar Sharif earned an Oscar nomination for Lawrence of Arabia

Actor Omar Sharif, who starred in Lawrence of Arabia and Doctor Zhivago in the 1960s, has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease.

The 83-year-old star's agent confirmed the news to the Associated Press.

It comes after his son Tarek gave an interview to Spain's El Mundo newspaper at the weekend.

"It's difficult to determine what stage it's at," he told the paper. "It's obvious he'll never improve and it will get worse."

Egypt-born Sharif won two Golden Globe awards and an Oscar nomination for his role as Sherif Ali in David Lean's 1962 epic Lawrence of Arabia.

He won a further Golden Globe three years later for Doctor Zhivago.

Memory problems

"He still knows he's a famous actor. The loss of memory affects above all specific things, details like when he was in a specific place or who he acted with in a specific film," Tarek El-Sharif told El Mundo.

"He remembers, for example, that it was Doctor Zhivago but he's forgotten when it was filmed.

"He can talk about the film but he forgets its name or he calls it something else instead like Lawrence of Arabia."

Related Topics

More on this story