American actor and documentary filmmaker Sean Stone, son of Oscar-winning director Oliver Stone, converted to Islam during a religious ceremony in Iran.
Stone became a Shia Muslim and chose to be known by the Muslim first name Ali as announced at the ceremony held in the Iranian historical city of Isfahan on February 14.
"The conversion to Islam is not abandoning Christianity or Judaism, which I was born with,” Stone said.
“It means I have accepted Mohammad (PBUH) and other prophets," he added in a brief telephone call.
Born to a Jewish father and Christian mother, Stone did not say why he converted to Islam.
Stone who visited Iran several months ago said he needed to know more about Persian culture and civilization and become familiar with Iranian traditions and rituals.
Stone referred to Iran as one of Asia's major filmmaking centers saying that he “would like to introduce Persian culture and civilization to the West.”
The 27-year-old filmmaker is a graduate of history from Princeton University and has collaborated on many of his father's projects such as the 2004 Alexander
. He has also directed a handful of documentaries.
Sean is not the first renowned celebrity who has converted to Islam. The English singer and songwriter Cat Stevens converted to Islam in 1977 and adopted the name Yusaf Islam.
The prominent boxer Muhammad Ali (born Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr.) also converted to Islam in 1964.