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Puerto Rican-American rapper Hamza Pérez pulled himself out of drug dealing and street life 12 years ago and became a Muslim.

Additional Video

Hamza, Suliman and their mom Gladys give an update on what they've been up to since filming ended.

Filmmaker Interviews

Jennifer Maytorena Taylor talks about her subject, Hamza Pérez, and what she hopes viewers will take away from the film.

Classroom Clips

Hamza Pérez records part of his rap, titled "Welcome Home."

Classroom Clips

Hamza and Rafiah talk about their involvement in family and community, and their daily lives.

Classroom Clips

The Muslim marriage ceremony of Hamza and Rafiah takes place.

Classroom Clips

Hamza Pérez talks about meeting his wife, Rafiah, online through a Muslim social networking website.

Additional Video

Hamza talks about what he was like as a troubled, drug-addicted young man.

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Hamza's talks about his wife Rafiah, a third generation Muslim. She talks about her connection with Hamza.

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Hamza and Rafiah talk about how they got to know each other online before they ever met in person.

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Hamza and Suliman from M-Team freestyle in a bodega.

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Hamza talks about the new generation of Muslim Americans and the culture that they are creating.

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A Muslim man explains what it means for food to be considered halal.

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A group of Muslim children make up a rap for Ramadan.

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Journalists and experts talk at length about the raid on the Pittsburgh mosque.

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Hamza Pérez talks to an ACLU attorney about a more recent interview on his religious beliefs.

  • Updated on March 25, 2015

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Film Information

New Muslim Cool (90 min.)

Premiere Date: June 23, 2009

Streaming Dates: Expired

Photos: Download Here

Trailer: Link | Embed

Filmmaker: Jennifer Maytorena Taylor Bio | Interview | Statement

Press: Filmmaker Statement | Critical Acclaim | Press Release


Jennifer Maytorena Taylor
Jennifer Maytorena Taylor

New Muslim Cool came out of my long-standing interest in the power of pop music and culture to create social change, and a deep feeling that we urgently need to look for common ground as our world grows increasingly diverse and interconnected.”

— Jennifer Maytorena Taylor, Filmmaker


Film Update

Critical Acclaim

New Muslim Cool possesses a kind of beauty that sneaks up on you: it is in Hamza’s humility, in the dignity with which he confronts so much of his misfortune, in his commitment to rehabilitating drug dealers because, in his mind, no one else will.”

— Ginia Bellafante
The New York Times

Read full review »

Thank goodness, this is the story of the new America that is unfolding — the one that young Americans across traditional divides are claiming everyday as their own.”

— Bakari Kitwana
NewsOne / Huffington Post

Disarming docu New Muslim Cool... [is] a fine illustration of the melting pot's latest cultural flavors, as well as a helpful look past post-9/11 Islamic stereotypes...”

— Dennis Harvey

Spellbinding... San Francisco filmmaker Jennifer Maytorena Taylor gives us the full dimension of a Muslim American man who's a rapper, educator, father, husband and idealist.”

— Jonathan Curiel,
San Francisco Chronicle

New Muslim Cool explores a world that few Muslims are aware of, a streetwise scene filled with mixed cultures, economic hardships, and hip hop.”

— Zahed Amanullah

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