Lior Raz (Hebrew: ליאור רז; born 24 November 1971) is an Israeli actor and screenwriter.[1][2] He portrays Doron Kabilio in the political thriller television series Fauda and Segev Azulai in Hit & Run.

Lior Raz
Raz in 2017
Born (1971-11-24) 24 November 1971 (age 52)
Occupation(s)Actor and screenwriter
Years active2000–present
Known forFauda
SpouseMeital Berdah
Children4

Early life edit

Raz was born in Ma'ale Adumim, an Israeli settlement of 40,000 inhabitants seven kilometres (4.3 mi) from Jerusalem, where he grew up as well. His parents immigrated to Israel from Iraq and Algeria.[3][4] His father served in Israel in Shayetet 13 and in Shin Bet before later running a plant nursery.[3][5] His mother is a teacher.[3] His native language is Hebrew, although Raz grew up also speaking Arabic with his father and grandmother at home, and with some Arab workers, who were his playmates, at his father's plant nursery.[5][4][3]

After Raz graduated from high school at the age of 18, he enlisted in the Israel Defense Forces and became a commando in the elite undercover counter-terrorism unit known as Sayeret Duvdevan.[5][3] He also served in the Duvdevan Unit in the reserves for 20 years.[5]

For three years, until Raz was 19, he had a girlfriend named Iris Azulai.[5][3] In October 1990, a Palestinian Arab stabbed her to death with a 15-inch knife in Jerusalem.[5][3] The man who stabbed her was later released from prison in the 2011 Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange in which 1,027 prisoners were released in order to obtain the release from captivity of the kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who had been held prisoner by Hamas for five years.[5][3]

In 1993, after his military service, Raz moved to the United States, and was hired by a security contracting firm as Arnold Schwarzenegger's bodyguard.[4] In an interview with Israel Hayom he said: “the company turned to me since they knew my military background, for me it was the most glamorous thing, to be the watchdog of Schwarzenegger and his wife".[6]

Career edit

When Raz returned to Israel at age 24, he studied at Nissan Nativ Drama School in Tel Aviv.[4]

In his early acting years, Raz acted in various plays, such as Don Juan at Gesher Theater, Macbeth and The Teenagers. He also played small roles on Israeli TV series. In 2004, he played a police investigator in Michaela, and 'referee Ben Shabat' in Adumot. In 2005 he appeared as Shimi in his first feature film Gotta Be Happy. In 2008 he appeared in television drama Srugim as Yisrael, and a year later in comedy-drama Mesudarim as a Shin Bet agent, and as Maor in Noah's Ark[clarification needed].[4] In 2011 he played a police unit commander in Nadav Lapid's drama film Policeman, and as Asa'el in the political drama Prime Minister's Children alongside Rami Heuberger.[4]

In 2012, Raz portrayed Nissan Title in yes psychological thriller spying-drama The Gordin Cell, and appeared in the film The World is Funny as Barak.[4] In 2013, he played the role of the police commander in the fourth season of the crime drama series The Arbitrator, and in 2014 appeared in the film The Kindergarten Teacher.

In 2014, he created with Haaretz journalist Avi Issacharoff the critically acclaimed political thriller television series Fauda, in which Raz stars as Doron Kabilio, the commander of an undercover counter-terrorism Mista'arvim unit.[4] In 2016, the show won six awards, including Best Drama Series, at the Israeli Academy Awards.[7] In December 2017, The New York Times voted Fauda the best international show of 2017.[8] In 2018, the show won 11 Israeli TV Academy Awards, including best TV drama, best actor for Raz, and best screenplay, casting, cinematography, recording, and special effects.[9]

In 2018, Raz played a Magdala community leader in the film Mary Magdalene, written by Helen Edmundson.[10] The same year, he appeared in Operation Finale, playing Isser Harel, the Director of Israel’s intelligence agency, the Mossad.[4]

In August 2021, Netflix released a new series named Hit & Run which stars Raz. The show was co-created by Raz, Avi Issacharof, Dawn Prestwich and Nicole Yorkin.[11]

Fauda production company, Faraway Road Productions, was also co-founded by Raz and Issacharoff, then, in 2022, was acquired by Candle Media, with continued involvement from both partners.[12][13]

In 2023, he and Fauda co-creator Avi Issacharoff created Ghosts of Beirut, a four-part spy drama that revisits the true-life manhunt for Imad Mughniyeh, which streamed on Showtime starting 19 May and made its on-air debut on 21 May.[14]

Personal life edit

Raz is married to Israeli actress Meital Berdah, and they have four children. They reside in Ramat Hasharon, Israel.[3][15][16][17]

Filmography edit

Film
Year Title Role Notes
2000 Delta Force One: The Lost Patrol Cave Guard
2005 Muchrachim Lehiyot Same'ach Shimi
2008 Everything Starts at the Sea Officer
2008 Eli & Ben Undercover policeman
2010 Mabul Rafi
2011 Policeman
2012 Haolam Mats'hik Barak
2014 The Kindergarten Teacher Nira's husband
2018 Mary Magdalene Magdala Community Leader
2018 Operation Finale Isser Harel
2018 Hollywood Salutes Israel Himself
2019 6 Underground Rovach Alimov
2020 Dena Gildens Life Levi Cohan
2024 Gladiator 2 Filming
Television
Year Title Role Notes Channel/Service
2011–2012 Prime Minister's Children Asael 18 episodes
2013 Scarred Shmulik 16 episodes
2015–present Fauda Doron Kabilio 48 episodes
2016–2017 Dumb Amos 4 episodes
2021 Hit & Run Segev Azulai 10 episodes
2023 The Crowded Room Yitzak Safdie 10 episodes Apple TV+

References edit

  1. ^ "'Fauda' co-creator and star, Lior Raz, brings the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to Netflix". CBC Radio. 4 January 2017. Retrieved 27 May 2017.
  2. ^ Megan Harrison (24 February 2017). "Q & A: Lior Raz, creator and lead actor of Fauda, appears in Ottawa, Sunday". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved 27 May 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i "How Do You Make a TV Show Set in the West Bank?", The New Yorker.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Lior Raz Archives", Jewish Journal.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g "Inside Fauda Transcript". Policy Conference. 27 March 2017. Archived from the original on 10 January 2018.
  6. ^ מבוקש (Wanted) Yehuda Schlesinger, Israel Hayom, 23 March 2017
  7. ^ Steinberg, Jessica. "Next season's 'Fauda' to reflect real news, says co-creator". www.timesofisrael.com.
  8. ^ Poniewozik, James; Hale, Mike; Lyons, Margaret (4 December 2017). "The Best TV Shows of 2017". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  9. ^ Stern, Itay (12 March 2018). "Israeli Emmys: 'Fauda' Wins Best TV Drama, 'Shababnikim' Best TV Comedy". Haaretz. Retrieved 23 April 2018.
  10. ^ Solomons, Jason (10 April 2019). "'Mary Magdalene' Film Review: Rooney Mara Plays Jesus' Gal Pal in Snoozy Epic". The Wrap.
  11. ^ Stolworthy, Jacob (10 August 2021). "Hit & Run: Netflix show creators break down cliffhanger ending and what could happen in season 2". The Independent. Retrieved 28 August 2021.
  12. ^ "Candle Media-backed Faraway Road brings in former Armoza, Keshet execs" C21 media. Accessed 2023-10-05
  13. ^ "Candle Media Confirms Acquisition of 'Fauda' Production Banner Faraway Road Productions". Variety. 12 January 2022. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  14. ^ Vlessing, Etan (19 April 2023). "Showtime's 'Ghosts of Beirut' Trailer Recounts CIA Manhunt for Deadly Terrorist (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 26 May 2023.
  15. ^ "Lior Raz On ‘Fauda’s’ Return," Jewish Journal.
  16. ^ ‘Fauda’ star Lior Raz ducks rockets on real-life mission to rescue Israelis in war
  17. ^ Актер Лиор Раз, главный герой "Фауды", участвовал в спасательной операции в Сдероте

External links edit