Abdalla parents are both Egyptian physicians who moved in 1979 to the United Kingdom. The 1981 Glasgow-born (according to other sources 1980) Abdalla grew from the age of four up in London and later attended the University of Cambridge.
After an appearance in the television series Spooks - In sight of the MI5 Abdalla was primarily known in his role as Ziad Jarrah 9/11-Terrorist in the disaster drama Flight 93. Abdalla was initially dismissive of the role and went to the audition only after he was convinced of the differentiated approach of the director Paul Greengrass.
The following year, Abdalla took over the lead role in The Kite Runner, the film adaptation of a novel by Khaled Hosseini. 2010 Abdalla played in the political thriller Green Zone alongside Matt Damon, Brendan Gleeson and Greg Kinnear, the role of the Iraqi translator Freddy.
During the revolution in Egypt in 2011 Abdalla demonstrated together with other Egyptian celebrities against the President Muhammad Hosni Mubarak regime.
- 2005: Spooks - In sight of MI5 ( Spooks ) (TV series, one episode)
- 2006: Flight 93 ( United 93 )
- 2007: Hush Your Mouth
- 2007: The Kite Runner ( The Kite Runner )
- 2010: Green Zone
- 2010: Maydoum (Short Film )
- 2011: predella (Short Film )
- 2012: Al Alamayn (Short Film )
- 2013: The Square (documentary)