Hi, I'm Dina!
I'm an award-winning actor and filmmaker. I am a first generation Arab American (Palestinian/Jordanian) born on 8 Mile to immigrant parents. I proudly speak fluent Arabic and can belly dance (also with a sword on my head). I'm your real life Princess Jasmine with an edge. I used to put on variety shows and plays for my parents in our living room with my little brother, Jack. In my senior year of high school, I won the Best Actress award (the prestigious Golden Mitten award -- which is basically a Tony) for my portrayal of Renfield, the lunatic asylum inmate, in Dracula. I remember the feeling of being unrecognizable, to lose myself in a character, so much so that the audience members did not even know it was me. That feeling ignited a passion in me that I had never known before.
Some of the roles I'm proudest of include: playing Maya, a Syrian refugee searching for her place in America, in the short film Maya which earned me the Best Actress Award at the 2018 University of Miami Canes Film Festival; recurring as alluring assassin Nadja Shah in season 2 of The Family Business on BET & Netflix (debuted in the top 10); and portraying troubled, rideshare passenger, Raven, in the mumblecore feature The Christmas Ride streaming on Prime Video for which I won Best Supporting Actress at the 2020 Tampa Bay Underground Film Festival.
In 2015, in an effort to start creating opportunities for myself and my fellow actors, I started making my own films. My mission is to bring diversity without stereotypes to the screen and stage and to tell important stories that inspire, empower, and include. Check out my photo project United Colors of Femme. I strive to portray and write interesting and multifaceted female characters who overcome adversity and trauma while infusing it with humor. I want to see people depicted as multidimensional characters. not as predetermined stereotypes of an ethnicity. My through line is belonging, and I always aim to leave my viewers with a sense of hope. I have never felt like I truly belong, so telling the stories of the underdog that perseveres, the traumas that shape us, and searching for our place in the world -- those are the stories I connect to and wish to tell. I truly believe it's important to create what you want to be a part of. To learn more about my projects and production company, just click the TN Productions tab up top.
I absolutely love comedy and appreciate how it has gotten me through the toughest times in my life. That's why I study aspects of it from stand-up to improv to sketch. I have a deep appreciation for stand-up comedians and the vulnerability that comes with this art form. You can check out some of my stand-up on the stand up tab up top.
In 2020, I became a mom! A dog mom that is. Scarlett Rose is my very best friend, and I really don't remember what life was like without her. She's my sassy 8 pound dog counterpart. She also loves being on camera. In 2022, I added another member to the family: My Siberian kitty, Amira Moon. Her and Scarlett are becoming besties. I don't know who of the three of us is the sassiest!
That's a little about me. Feel free to send me a message if you'd like to connect. And let's create together!
What others are saying about me
Dina Najjar is an unstoppable force. She has a titanic screen presence that belies her diminutive physical form. The source of her power — and the reason I would be delighted to work with her again on any project — is her unflinching commitment to the role. No matter the scope of the part, Dina will inhabit it completely and breathe a sincerity into the performance that is incredible to behold. She has an auspicious career ahead of her, and I feel honored to have been able to work with her.
~Stephen Stull, Writer and Director of D is for Demon
I met Dina a few years back at ClassAct Studios where I used to work as the studio manager, teacher’s assistant and taping coach. I had the pleasure of taking acting classes with Dina and seeing her perform often and I’ve also put her on tape regularly for auditions. It’s been great to see her confidence and ability grow as she’s developed her craft. She is one of the most confident and well-defined individuals I’ve ever met. She knows her stuff and is comfortable in any genre.
~Demi Castro, Actor and Coach
Dina Najjar was such a joy to work with. She was always responsive during pre-production, flexible when needed and an absolute professional on set. Dina was able to bring the character to life in a way that was exceeded my expectations. I truly hope to work with Dina again. She would be an asset to any production.
~Robin Hoffman, Writer and Director of I Win
Dina is a joy to work with. Not only does she come to set prepared with a grab bag full of interesting choices, she also arrives with a positive attitude and a fantastic work ethic. She is delightfully funny, however incredibly serious about her craft. I look forward to working with Dina again!
~Fred Zara, Director of High Existence
Dina is the definition of a professional actor. She comes to set prepared and with a glowing attitude. No matter the direction given, she’s ready to add her special sauce to it. Any production would be lucky to have her on their team.
~Stefanie Davis, Writer and Director of The Christmas Ride
Dina Najjar is not only a talented actor; but an absolute pleasure to work with. Her care and dedication to the craft is admirable, and I can’t wait to work with her again. It’s not often you find an actor with these many qualities, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to work with her.
~F.C. Rabbath, Writer and Director of A Brilliant Monster
I had the true pleasure of directing Dina on our film production of Stranded. I had the opportunity of working with Dina on several different occasions, from table reads to dress rehearsal to actual production and, she was always professional and on time.
Dina’s drive and passion is clear in her acting abilities. Her dedication to becoming the character of Sarah was profound. She really dove into the character and became Sarah. She was forced to play a wide range of emotions within this character, and all of the emotions rang through in her performance. She took direction very well and was not afraid to ask questions about her character.
The combination of her talent, drive, passion, beauty, and skills are what make Dina an “Actor's Actor." I would recommend Dina for any role. Dina is an absolute pleasure to work with. I will be keeping her in mind for future projects.
~Kassi Gardner, Writer and Director of Stranded
It has been a great privilege to direct Dina in our film production, The Anniversary. Her dedication to go along with her obvious beauty and intelligence were those attributes that were essential during her performance as Kate.
Her natural instincts and curiosity as an actor came together very well since she was required to play a whole range of emotions for her character; indeed, flawless.
It would be an honor to work with her again!
~Joe Costa, Director of The Anniversary
Dina was a joy to work with. She showed up every day with the best attitude, she gave a terrific performance, and she championed the film from day one. She was such a positive influence during every stage of production. I admire both her drive and skill as a collaborator.
~Dylan Merriman, Writer and Director of Paradox
Dina is a joy to work with. She is a true professional dedicated to her work and any Director should feel lucky to be able to work with her. She is well prepared and understands what makes a screenplay work.
~Brandon Schinzel, Writer and Director of Hunters
Dina is the type of actress every actor hopes to work with. She is professional and carries a high level of integrity. She shows up to set ready to work. She brings a depth to her characters that makes it a joy to work off of. I have had the privilege of working with her on a couple of projects and, the experience left me hoping that our paths cross again in the future. This is an actress who works hard and as a result will go far.
~Scot Smith, Actor
I can't stop thinking of Dina Najjar's performance. We had 3 minutes with her and in that 3 minutes, she made me cry. She is amazing!
~Catherine Walling, Writer and Director of A Night Out in Kabul