Musa Aden is a Somali American actor and filmmaker. His journey to acting began with his love of hip hop music and on the set of music videos. Those experiences allowed him to appreciate the art of acting and aspire to become one. Musa understood the challenges that lay ahead to becoming an actor, however, overcoming those challenges was not compared to the path that he took coming to America. Musa and his family escaped the civil war in Somalia and sought refuge in Kenya prior to being relocated to America as refugees. Musa was 10 years old when he and his family arrived in Salt Lake City Utah. Musa was able to overcome the language barrier and culture shock by exposure to hip-hop music and culture which facilitated his assimilation into the urban city faster than his parent.
While pursuing his dream to become an actor, Musa worked odd jobs including multiple sales positions.
His first experience in the filming industry was “Manakobi” directed by K’naan. Even though the project was never released, that experience allowed him the opportunity to learn and meet the legendary American actor Robert Redford, who was an advisor on “Manakobi”. Talking with Robert Redford had a profound impact on Musa. The first question Robert asked him was if he had an agent, which Musa did not have at that time because he did not view himself as a professional actor. However, as a quick learner, Musa noted their interaction and started to implement Robert’s advice.
Musa began taking acting classes and looked for acting opportunities. At this time Musa met Jd Allen, the founder, and owner of Inglewood films. Inglewood films was a small movie studio. Musa began to work with Inglewood films as they grew, and Musa fell in love with the work they were doing. He started to work behind the scene and gain technical experience by working on sound production and as a production manager. In 2022 Musa executive produced the horror film Algea: God of Pain, which was directed by Jd Allen, who is also an executive producer. After a few years, Musa’s hard work and determination started paying off. His first SAG film role was in “The happy worker” directed by Duwayne Dunham. His first leading role was in the short film “Thirst”, in which Musa was nominated for the best leading actor. Musa recently appeared in the highly successful comedy series “Little America” on Apple TV+ as a supporting lead actor. Musa also just finished filming “Malbatt Mis Bakara” international feature film which he appeared in as lead supporting role. The film will be released theaters worldwide in 2023 and will stream on Netflix worldwide shortly after. This film required him to travel to multiple filming locations, including Turkey and Malaysia.
Musa continues to learn and grow as an actor, he understands that no one makes it alone and would like to thank all of the people that have assisted him along the way. Jd Allen who has taught Musa about the technical aspect of filming. However, a special thanks to David N. Watson, the President and Chief Executive Officer of Comcast Cable. As an Xfinity assistant store manager, Musa did not accrue the time needed to accept his most recent role. David made it possible for Musa to take over a month off from work to travel to Turkey and Malaysia which allowed him to pursue his dream. Musa still resides in Salt Lake City, Utah with his wife and three children.
Musa’s background as a refugee and working actor allowed him to recognize an opportunity for him to give back by inspiring young refugee youth through acting and filmmaking. Musa recalls times when he started acting and being told to stop and focus on school or do something else with his life. He focused on achieving his dream even though he has not realized his full potential in the film industry. Musa wants to use his platform to encourage others to also pursue their dreams and become a mentor.