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Who Plays Layla In Moon Knight?

With Ethan Hawke and Oscar Isaac leading the cast, "Moon Knight" is, in some ways, a vehicle for their immense star power. In the newest Disney+ series from Marvel, Isaac, in particular, wears many hats. Owing to his character's dissociative identity disorder, the actor plays Marc Spector, a man who lives an alternate life as nebbishy gift shop employee Steven Grant. The Egyptian moon god Khonshu (F. Murray Abraham) brings more identities to the fray, with Spector sometimes acting as the god's human avatar. Hawke, meanwhile, stars as the menacing cult leader Arthur Harrow.

With the first episode of "Moon Knight" having aired on March 30, series creator Jeremy Slater has already teased the appearance of another character named Layla. Episode 1, titled "The Goldfish Problem," doesn't reveal much about Layla, only that she has some sort of relationship with Steven–– or is it Marc? Screen Rant speculates that Layla could be a character from "X-Men," but fans won't know more about her background until Episode 2 airs on April 6. 

From her brief appearances in the "Moon Knight" trailer, however, it's clear that the actor had to do her fair share of stunt training. But who is it that plays Layla in "Moon Knight"?

Layla is played by May Calamawy

Egyptian-Palestinian actor May Calamawy plays Layla El-Faouly in "Moon Knight." According to Variety, director and executive producer Mohamed Diab advocated for Calamawy's casting, as well as the script change that made the character Egyptian. As an Egyptian creator himself, Diab was extremely cognizant of the fact that "Moon Knight" is the first MCU title to take place in the Arab world. "One of the most important things was how to depict Egypt, the present and the past, in an authentic way," he said.

Calamawy's other credits include episodes of "Madame Secretary," "The Brave," and "FBI" (via IMDb). She is perhaps best known for her work on the Emmy-winning series "Ramy," in which she plays a first-generation Egyptian-American living in a Muslim community in New Jersey. As the sister of the main character, her character, Dena, provides a much-needed female perspective to the series.

Calamawy hopes to bring the same sort of representation to "Moon Knight," pulling from her Egyptian background to enrich Layla. "I didn't want to pull inspiration from someone in the West. I specifically wanted to do that with women from the Middle East," she told Screen Rant. "I was like, 'How can I bring some of that to Layla?'"