He had to learn to speak Arabic and he had to study Middle Eastern culture to play the role of Tariq Nassiri in Over There.
Omid is of Iranian descent.
(On the Iranian community)
Omid: I think the strengths of our community far outweigh our weaknesses. We are a very caring, loving, and nurturing culture. However, I feel we have a tendency to be too materialistic and too concerned about our appearances. But that's a stereotype that's already out there. It's just sad that it's true. I usually find all Iranians I run into very loving, and that is a quality I most enjoy about our people.
(On his character Tariq Nassiri in Over There)
Omid: First off, it was very difficult to pick up the Arabic. I spent many hours with an Arabic translator going over my pronunciation, and got to a point where he could actually understand what I was saying. Farsi draws a lot of its vocabulary from the Arabic language, making it easier for me to understand (Arabic). However, understanding what I was saying didn't make the pronunciation part of it any easier. As for Tariq, he was very much like me. I have a brother in the military, and since his time overseas he has grown distant from our family. Doing this show allowed me to relate to his experience a bit, and I hope I made him proud. I love him more than he knows.