|“||My friend, there is a fine line between coincidence and fate.||„|
|~ Ardeth Bay|
Ardeth Bay is a chief member of the Medjai, descendants of the royal bodygauards of several pharaohs of Egypt. He is the central protagonist in the first two The Mummy series. He aides Rick O'Connell and his family in destroying the twice resurrected mummy, Imhotep. He is also the narrator of the prologues in the films. In the first film, he is viewed as an antagonist hero but by the end, he is a true hero as well as throughout the second film. He primarily uses a sword in battle but knows how to handle machine guns and other firearms.
In the films, he was portrayed by Israeli actor Oded Fehr.
The Mummy (1999)
In the 1999 remake of The Mummy, he narrates the story of Imhotep and how he protects the mummy's tomb today from grave robbers or those who wish to revive him. The film opens with Ardeth and his army in a battle against soldiers of the French Foreign Legion. They quickly outnumber the legion and their only survivor is the series protagonist: Rick O'Connell. Ardeth lets him live and finds interest in him. Three years after the battle, an expedition is set out to locate Imhotep's tomb and Ardeth tries to stop them. He warns Rick about how unearthing the mummy would be catastrophic, but Rick's would-be wife, Evie, accidently resurrects Imhotep. After several expeditioners are killed, Ardeth pledges his service to help Rick kill Imhotep. When they arrive at Hamunaptra, Imhotep summoned several soldiers to stop them. Ardeth sacrifices himself and lured the soldiers away. When the O'Connell's succeeded, Ardeth appears behind them, having survived. He thanks them, welcomes them as his friends, and offers to be of service in the future
The Mummy Returns (2001)
In the sequel, he returns to help the O'Connell's to stop not only Imhotep again but also the Scorpion King. An Egyptian cult worshipping Imhotep overran the city of Hamunaptra and located Imhotep's body as well as his two magic books. The cult invaded the O'Connell's home in London and kidnapped Evie O'Connell. Ardeth arrived to help but was defeated in a swordfight with the cult's strongman, Lock-Nah. Imhotep is resurrected at the British museum and Rick and Ardeth barge in and start a shooting gallery. They escape but only to be chased by Imhotep's mummy soldiers once again. Ardeth is almost slain by one but is saved by Rick. When the cult kidnaps Alex O'Connell and travel to the Scorpion King's tomb, the O'Connells follow them in hot pursuit. Afraid that the Scorpion King will surely rise, Ardeth calls upon every Medjai warrior to fight if the Scorpion king's army arises. He uses his peregrine falcon, Horus, to send messages to his army of where to go. When they reach the tomb and the oasis surrounding it, Lock-Nah spots Horus and shoots the bird, hoping to stop the Medjai in their tracks. At nightfall, Imhotep and his followers are ambushed by tiny mummified natives and as they are being attacked, Rick and Ardeth charge in again and take down the remaining followers. Ardeth engages in another duel with Lock-Nah and is victorious as he slains him. Ardeth's army was not far behind and he goes to gather them. The next day, the Army of Anubis is risen and a climatic battle is set between the army and the Medjai. They kill every single soldier and celebrate but Ardeth feels like it was too easy. The army then see millions of Anubis soldiers charging towards them. The Medjai hold their ground and are prepared to fight to the death. As the army of Anubis were about to strike, they disappeared. Ardeth knew that Rick killed the Scorpion King and sent his army back to the underworld. Although Ardeth did not know it for certain, he was also sure Imhotep was dead for good; because he later saw Rick rejoicing with his family and knew Rick was determined to bring down the Mummy he would not let Imhotep go without a fight. As the O'Connells ride away, they spot Ardeth, who thanks them once again.
- Ardeth's character was similar to Kazim, from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Both men devoted their lives to protecting the mummy and the holy grail. Both men tried to kill the protagonists as they thought both Rick O'Connell and Indiana Jones were going to use the mummy and grail for evil purposes. They were prepared to do anything to keep their treasures safe.
- In the 1932 original, Ardeth Bay was the alias used by Imhotep.