Mahershala Ali: Getting ready to be a dad has been my anchor

Moonlight star Mahershala Ali has told how getting ready to become a father for the first time has kept him grounded throughout a hectic awards season.

While the 43-year-old has been an actor for the last 20 years, this month he will attend his first Oscars ceremony as a star in, not one, but two best picture nominations – Moonlight and Hidden Figures.

But while he has been busy on the red carpets this year, he is also expecting his first child with wife Amatus Sami-Karim, who he met while studying at New York University in 2000 and married in 2013.

“Having a child is the polar opposite experience of the awards season experience,” he told Associated Press.

“Having a child requires you to nest, to be in your home, and to create and make your home and environment that is one that is potentially very welcoming and nurturing for a child. … The pregnancy has been a real anchor for me to be able to check in.”

This year has seen him nominated for best supporting actor at the Oscars, Golden Globes and the Baftas for his role in the hard-hitting Barry Jenkins films alongside Naomie Harris.

But while he is excited about taking on the new job of fatherhood, he told how his dream screen role would be to recreate music legend Marvin Gaye.

Describing the idea as a dream come true, he said: “I am such a fan and admirer of Marvin Gaye, the man and the musician and the artist.

“I would love dearly to do that project and bring some aspect of Marvin Gaye’s life to the screen and to assist and participate in that.”

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