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Born in the Great State of New Jersey, Dean’s comedy comes in large part from his unique background of being the son of a Palestinian father and a Sicilian mother. Dean, an award winning comedian who was at one time a practicing attorney, has appeared on “The Axis of Evil” Comedy TV special which aired in the US on Comedy Central and in the Middle East on Showtime Arabia. He is the co-creator of Comedy Central.com’s critically acclaimed Internet series “The Watch List” featuring a cast of all Middle Eastern-American comedians performing stand up and sketch comedy. Dean has appeared twice on ABC’s “The View,” on the nationally syndicated TV series “Comics Unleashed with Byron Allen” and was one of five comedians profiled in the recent one hour TV Special entitled: “Stand Up: Muslim-American Comics Come of Age” which aired in the US on PBS and internationally on BBC World and Al Jazeera.
Dean is currently co-directing and co-producing the documentary “The Muslims Are Coming!” featuring a tour of American-Muslim comedians performing free comedy shows across the heartland of America in the hopes of using comedy to foster understanding and dispel misconceptions about Muslims. The film also features special guest interviews with various well known people including: “The Daily Show’s” Jon Stewart and Assif Mandvi, CNN’s Soledad O’Brien and Ali Velshi, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, Current TV’s Cenk Uyger, comedians Lewis Black, David Cross and Colin Quinn as well as Congressman Keith Ellison, and many more. The documentary will (hopefully) be released in the fall of 2012.
Dean is the
co-creator and co-producer of the New York Arab-American Comedy Festival which
will hold its 9th annual Festival in October 2012. He is also proud to serve as
the Executive Director of The Amman Stand up Comedy Festival – the first stand
up comedy festival ever held in the Middle East which took place in December
2008. The third annual Amman Festival was held December 4-10, 2010.
Dean has appeared on numerous international and national television and radio programs including CNN’s “What The Week,” “American Morning” and “The Situation Room,” CNN Headline News’ “The Joy Behar Show,” PBS’ “Newshour with Jim Lehrer,” ABC’s “Nightline,” MSNBC, Current TV, HD’s “Dan Rather Reports,” NPR, Alhurra TV, Fox News’ “Geraldo at Large,” ABC’s “20/20,” Al Jazeera’s “Min Washington,” MBC’s morning show, “Democracy Now with Amy Goodman,” NPR’s “All Things Considered,” and CNN International’s “Inside the Middle East.” In addition, he has been featured in various publications including Time magazine, Newsweek, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and The Los Angeles Times and he frequently writes for CNN.com and The Huffington Post. He has written jokes which have been featured on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live’s” Weekend Update segment and CBS’ “The Late, Late Show.”
Dean is proud to have received the first annual “Bill Hicks Spirit Award” for “thought provoking comedy” (named after the late comedian Bill Hicks) from the NY Underground Comedy Festival and the Hicks’ Family.
He also co-created the comedy show “Stand up for Peace” along with Jewish comic Scott Blakeman which they perform at colleges across the country in support of peace in the Middle East and as a way of fostering understanding between Arab, Muslim and Jewish-Americans.
In addition to performing comedy throughout the US, Dean has performed in the Middle East in Jordan, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Lebanon, Oman, Israel, Qatar, and Dubai.