When US movie audiences first laid eyes Omar Sharif, he was a shimmering apparition, galloping out of a desert mirage on the back of a camel toward Peter O'Toole in the 1962 epic Lawrence of Arabia.

The Egyptian actor's journey would take him to leading roles in such films as Doctor Zhivago, Funny Girl and The Night of the Generals.

Google celebrated the iconic actor's birthday on Tuesday with a dashingly handsome animated doodle.

Sharif was born Michel Demitri Shalhoub in Alexandria, Egypt, on April 10, 1932.

He earned a degree in mathematics and physics from the University of Cairo and worked in his family's lumber business before making his way abroad to study acting at London's Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.

Before Lawrence of Arabia, Sharif starred in such Egyptian hits as 1954's The Blazing Sun (which co-starred his future wife, actress Faten Hamama), 1960's A Rumor of Love, and 1961's There is a Man in Our House.

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