Kumail Nanjiani
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Kumail Nanjiani

Kumail Nanjiani
Kumail Nanjiani by Gage Skidmore 2.jpg
Nanjiani at the 2019 San Diego Comic-Con
Born1977/1978 (age 42-43)[1][2]
Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan
EducationGrinnell College
OccupationComedian, actor, screenwriter, podcaster
Years active2008-present
(m. 2007)
RelativesShereen Nanjiani
(second cousin)

Kumail Ali Nanjiani (;[3] born 1977 or 1978)[1][2] is a Pakistani-American comedian, actor, screenwriter and podcaster mainly known for his role as Dinesh on HBO's comedy series Silicon Valley (2014-2019) and for co-writing and starring in the romantic comedy The Big Sick (2017). For co-writing the latter with his wife, Emily V. Gordon, he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. In 2018, Time named him one of the 100 most influential people in the world.[4]

Nanjiani has also voiced Prismo on the animated series Adventure Time and starred in the TNT series Franklin & Bash and the Adult Swim series Newsreaders. He also co-hosted the Comedy Central show The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail, as well as playing various roles on the comedy series Portlandia. He also starred in the action film Stuber (2019).

Early life

Nanjiani was born in 1977 or 1978 and grew up in Karachi,[1] the first of two sons of Sindhi couple Shabana and Aijaz Nanjiani.[5] Nanjiani was raised as a Muslim[6] and had an Islamic wedding ceremony,[7] though he later became an atheist.[8] Scottish Pakistani radio presenter Shereen Nanjiani is his second cousin.[9][10][11] During his childhood, he lived in Karachi and attended St. Michael's Convent School for his O Levels and graduated from Karachi Grammar School to complete his A Levels. At 18, he moved to the U.S. and enrolled at Grinnell College in Grinnell, Iowa, where he graduated in 2001 with a double major in computer science and philosophy.[2][12][13]

Career

Nanjiani in January 2017

In 2011, Nanjiani and X-Play staffer Ali Baker began hosting a video game-themed podcast, titled The Indoor Kids. In late August of the same year Baker left the show and Nanjiani began hosting with his wife, Emily V. Gordon.[14] Until other commitments took over, he appeared regularly on Dan Harmon's podcast Harmontown, where he played Dungeons & Dragons with Harmon as a character named Chris de Burgh. He played a delivery man in the 2013 film, The Kings of Summer.[15] In addition to guest-starring in various comedy shows like Portlandia, Nanjiani was featured in a supporting role in the TNT series Franklin & Bash. He played the role of Pindar Singh, an agoraphobic fiction nerd working for the title characters.

Nanjiani guest-starred on HBO's Veep as a statistician. He had a recurring role of Amir Larussa on Newsreaders, as well as Prismo on Adventure Time. His Comedy Central special titled Beta Male aired in July 2013.[16] In late June 2013, Comedy Central announced the pickup of a show The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail hosted by Jonah Ray and Nanjiani.[17] The show, featuring Nerd Melt comedy regulars and various comedians, began airing in July 2014.[18] In April 2014, he began playing the character Dinesh in the HBO sitcom Silicon Valley.[13] He voiced Reggie in the video game The Walking Dead: Season Two.[19] In July 2014, Nanjiani hosted a weekly podcast titled The X-Files Files, dedicated to discussion and fond reminiscences about The X-Files. Each episode features him and a guest, including former The X-Files writers, producers, actors and directors, in light-hearted banter about one or two episodes of the series.[20][21] On July 30, 2014, Nanjiani appeared on Ken Reid's TV Guidance Counselor Podcast.[22]

In 2015, Nanjiani guest-starred in an episode of Broad City called "In Heat".[23] Starting on March 22, 2015 he provided his voice for the character of Mshak Moradi in the Hunt the Truth audio drama, part of the marketing campaign for Halo 5: Guardians.[24] On May 5, 2015, he appeared on Inside Amy Schumer in the episode "12 Angry Men Inside Amy Schumer", a parody of 12 Angry Men, as one of the members of the jury.[25] In July 2015, Nanjiani provided guest voices on Aqua Teen Hunger Force and Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero.[26] In November 2015, he starred in an Old Navy TV commercial together with Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Snoop Dogg.[27] In April 2016, he starred in another Old Navy advertisement with SNL cast members Jay Pharoah, Cecily Strong, and Nasim Pedrad.

In 2017, Nanjiani starred in the romantic comedy film The Big Sick, which he wrote with his wife Emily V. Gordon.[28] The film is about their relationship, with Nanjiani playing himself and Zoe Kazan playing Gordon (renamed Emily Gardner). The film was one of the most acclaimed films of 2017, and was chosen by American Film Institute as one of the top 10 films of the year and was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.[29][30] The film was also the third highest grossing independent film released in 2017, grossing over 40 million dollars.[31]

In 2019, Nanjiani headlined the first episode of the CBS All Access revival of the anthology series The Twilight Zone. For his role on The Twilight Zone, Nanjiani received a nomination for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series. In film, Nanjiani voiced the alien Pawny in Men in Black International, which was released on June 14.[32][33][34] Nanjiani stated, "I play an alien so you won't see my face but you'll hear my voice, I'm a little alien frog/lizard... thing."[35] Nanjiani also stars in the action-comedy film Stuber, released on July 12.[36][37] In 2020, Nanjiani lent his voice to Plimpton, an ostrich, in the adventure comedy film Dolittle.[38] He also wrote for and produced the Apple TV+ anthology series Little America, which premiered in January 2020. The series is based on the story collection of the same name from Epic Magazine which focuses on stories from immigrants. To promote the series, Nanjiani appeared at the Apple Event of March 25, 2019.[39][40]

In March, 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, Nanjiani and his wife Emily Gordon launched a podcast, Staying In with Emily and Kumail.[41] The series chronicles their experiences as a couple forced to live in isolation during the global pandemic. The podcast has been widely acclaimed in the media, as a welcome respite during a period of high anxiety.[42]GQ described it as "consistently endearing, actually useful, and often hilarious." [43]New York magazine relates that "all advice is shared via cute and charming banter."[44]

Nanjiani starred with Issa Rae in the comedy-chase film The Lovebirds, directed by Michael Showalter, produced by Paramount Pictures, and released by Netflix in May 2020.[45]

Upcoming projects

Nanjiani will star in the Marvel Cinematic Universe film Eternals.[46]Eternals is set to be released on November 5, 2021, with Nanjiani playing Kingo Sunen. In February 2020, Nanjiani signed on to star in The Independent, a political thriller to be directed by Amy Rice.[47]

Personal life

In 2007 at Chicago City Hall, Nanjiani married author, producer, and former couples and family therapist Emily V. Gordon.[48] She was the producer of The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail (2014-2016).[49] In an interview with The A.V. Club, he described his journey from being a religious Muslim to an atheist.[8]

Filmography

Key
Denotes films that have not yet been released Denotes films that have not yet been released

Film

Year Title Role Notes
2010 Life as We Know It Simon
2012 The Five-Year Engagement Pakistani Chef
2013 The Kings of Summer Gary the Delivery Guy
Hell Baby Cable Guy
Bad Milo Bobbi
2014 The Last of the Great Romantics George the Counter Guy
Sex Tape Punit
2015 Loaded Reza
Hot Tub Time Machine 2 Brad
Addicted to Fresno Damon
Hello, My Name Is Doris Nasir
Hell and Back Dave the Demon (voice)
Goosebumps Foreman
2016 Central Intelligence Jared the Airport Security Guard Cameo
Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates Keanu
Brother Nature Riggleman
Flock of Dudes Ro
The Late Bloomer Rich
2017 The Big Sick Kumail Nanjiani Also writer
Fist Fight Officer Mehar
A Happening of Monumental Proportions HR Rep Perry
Funny: The Documentary Himself
The Lego Ninjago Movie Jay (voice)
2018 Duck Butter Jake
2019 Stuber Stu Prasad
Men in Black: International Pawny (voice)
2020 Dolittle Plimpton (voice)
The Lovebirds Jibran
2021 Eternals Denotes films that have not yet been released Kingo Sunen Post-production

Television

Year Title Role Notes
2008 Saturday Night Live Indian Reporter Uncredited
Episode: "James Franco/Kings of Leon"
2009 The Colbert Report Various characters 2 episodes
2009 Michael & Michael Have Issues Kumail 7 episodes
2010 Ugly Americans Neilando Patel (voice) Episode: "Treegasm"
2011 Traffic Light Paul Episode: "Where the Heart Is"
2011 CollegeHumor Originals Vendor Episode: "Batman Chooses His Voice"
2011 Googy Dwayne 6 episodes
2011-2014 Franklin & Bash Pindar Singh 31 episodes
2011-2018 Portlandia Various characters 13 episodes
2012-2016 Adventure Time Prismo (voice) 7 episodes
2013-2015 Newsreaders Amir Larussa 11 episodes
2013 Burning Love Zakir 17 episodes
2013 Veep Statistician Episode: "Midterms"
2013 Drunk History Lakota Chief Episode: "Nashville"
2013 Ghost Ghirls Mr. Mattoo Episode: "I Believe in Mira-ghouls"
2014-2019 Silicon Valley Dinesh Chugtai 53 episodes
2014 Math Bites Showoff Guy Episode: "Math Heads: Do Math in Your Head"
2014 The Pete Holmes Show Dhalsim Episode: "Erin Hamlin and Kate Hansen"
2014-2016 The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail Himself (host) 24 episodes
2014 TripTank Dick Genie (voice) 4 episodes
2014 Garfunkel and Oates Jordan Episode: "Hair Swap"
2014 Key and Peele College Kid #1 Episode: "Scariest Movie Ever"
2014-2015 Bob's Burgers Skip (voice) 2 episodes
2014-2015 Community Custodian Lapari 2 episodes
2015 Broad City Benny Calitri Episode: "In Heat"
2015 Archer Farooq Ashkani (voice) Episode: "Sitting"
2015 Inside Amy Schumer Juror #11 Episode: "12 Angry Men Inside Amy Schumer"
2015 Scheer-RL Mariah Carey Episode: "Mariah Carey"
2015 Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero Cuteling Mayor (voice) Episode: "The Ripple Effect"
2015 Aqua Teen Hunger Force Frylock's bees (voice) Episode: "Sweet C"
2015 The Grinder Prosecutor Leonard 2 episodes
2016 The X-Files Pasha Episode: "Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster"
2016 Animals. Rusty (voice) Episode: "Dogs."
2016 31st Independent Spirit Awards Himself (host) Television special
2016-2017 HarmonQuest Eddie Lizard 2 episodes
2017 Saturday Night Live Himself (host) Episode: "Kumail Nanjiani/Pink"
2018 RuPaul's Drag Race Himself (judge) Episode: "Drag Con Panel Extravaganza"
2019 The Twilight Zone Samir Wassan Episode: "The Comedian"[50]
2019 Bless the Harts Jesus Christ (voice) Series regular
2020 Little America -- Executive producer
2020 Kal Penn Approves This Message Himself Episode "Kal Penn Approves Education"

Video games

Year Title Voice role
2013 The Walking Dead: Season Two Reggie
2017 Mass Effect: Andromeda[51] Jarun Tann
Middle-earth: Shadow of War The Agonizer

Web

Year Title Role Notes
2009 Jake and Amir Kumail 4 episodes
2015 Hunt the Truth Mshak Moradi [52]
2013-2017 Harmontown Himself
2017 Game Grumps 1 episode; on the same episode as Paul Scheer
Movie Fights
2019 Achievement Hunter Himself 1 episode
2019 Gay of Thrones Himself 1 episode; "Gay Of Thrones S8 E4 Recap"
2019 Hot Ones Himself 1 episode

Awards and nominations

References

  1. ^ a b c Marie, Jane (May 20, 2014). "The Secret Life of Marrieds: Why We Kept Our Marriage Secret for Years". Cosmopolitan. Retrieved 2020.
  2. ^ a b c Konigsberg, Eric (October 30, 2009). "It's Not a Bad Time to Be Funny in the City". The New York Times. Retrieved 2014.
  3. ^ "How to pronounce Kumail Nanjiani?". www.google.com. Retrieved 2020.
  4. ^ "The 100 Most Influential People in the World". Time. Retrieved 2019.
  5. ^ Marantz, Andrew (May 1, 2017). "Kumail Nanjiani's Culture-Clash Comedy" – via www.newyorker.com.
  6. ^ Nanjiani, Kumail. "For Comedian Kumail Nanjiani, Getting Personal Is Complicated". NPR.org.
  7. ^ http://www.popflock.com/video?id=5oQCkcot9K4
  8. ^ a b Wolinsky, David (August 23, 2007). "Kumail Nanjiani". The A.V. Club.
  9. ^ Nanjiani, Shereen (September 1, 2012). "Extended Interview with Kumail Nanjiani". Shereen. BBC Radio Scotland. Retrieved 2013.
  10. ^ Allison, Kevin (February 11, 2013). "Live From San Francisco!". Risk!. Retrieved 2013.
  11. ^ "Interview: Kumail Nanjiani Explains Pakistani Culture (Full Interview)". June 28, 2017.
  12. ^ "Interview with Comedian Kumail Nanjiani '01". Grinnell College. September 22, 2010. Archived from the original on March 18, 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  13. ^ a b Kavner, Lucas (April 4, 2014). "'Silicon Valley,' a Comedy Central project and a killer bidet joke: Kumail Nanjiani has it all". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2014.
  14. ^ Baker, Ali; Nanjiani, Kumail (July 15, 2012). "#1 Steve Agee". The Indoor Kids. Nerdist Industries. Archived from the original on May 4, 2014. Retrieved 2016.
  15. ^ "The Kings of Summer Red-Band Trailer". Collider.com. May 20, 2013. Retrieved 2014.
  16. ^ Sims, David (July 23, 2013). "Kumail Nanjiani: Beta Male". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2014.
  17. ^ Kondolojy, Amanda (June 20, 2013). "Comedy Central Greenlights 'The Meltdown With Jonah and Kumail'". TV by the Numbers. Archived from the original on June 24, 2013. Retrieved 2014.
  18. ^ "The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail". NerdmeltLA.com. Archived from the original on July 1, 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  19. ^ Casey, Dan (May 13, 2014). "Game Review: The Walking Dead Season 2: In Harm's Way". Nerdist Industries. Archived from the original on May 17, 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  20. ^ Eakin, Marah (June 9, 2014). "Kumail Nanjiani to take on every episode of The X-Files in new podcast". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2014.
  21. ^ "The X-Files Files". iTunes. Retrieved 2014.
  22. ^ "TV Guidance Counselor Podcast: TV Guidance Counselor Episode 26: Kumail Nanjiani". TV Guidance Counselor. July 30, 2014. Retrieved 2020.
  23. ^ Cruz, Lenika (January 14, 2015). "Bed, Bath, and Bong Rips: The Glorious Return of Broad City". The Atlantic. Retrieved 2015.
  24. ^ Xbox Wire Staff (May 17, 2015). "Halo 5: Guardians #HuntTheTruth - Has the Master Chief Gone AWOL?". News.xbox.com.
  25. ^ Holmes, Linda (May 6, 2015). "Amy Schumer Puts Her Own Looks On Trial". NPR.org. Retrieved 2015.
  26. ^ "New Listings for Disney XD - July 2015". The Disney Driven Life. June 30, 2015. Retrieved 2015.
  27. ^ Marica, Liviu. "Old Navy: Snoopin' Around featurig Snoop Dogg". Daily Commercials. Retrieved 2015.
  28. ^ Winfrey, Graham (January 22, 2017). "Amazon Wins 'The Big Sick' Bidding War $12 Million Buy Sundance 2017". IndieWire. Retrieved 2017.
  29. ^ "AFI Awards 2017". AFI. Archived from the original on December 8, 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  30. ^ "Oscars: 'Shape of Water' Leads With 13 Noms". The Hollywood Reporter. January 23, 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  31. ^ Erbland, Kate. "The 20 Highest Grossing Indies of 2017 (A Running List) - IndieWire". IndieWire. Retrieved 2017.
  32. ^ "'Men in Black' Movie Spin-Off Adds 'Jurassic' Actor to Cast (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter.
  33. ^ Busch, Anita (January 18, 2018). "'Men In Black' Spinoff Gets Summer 2019 Release Date Change". Deadline. Retrieved 2018.
  34. ^ Chitwood, Adam (December 5, 2018). "The 'Men in Black' Reboot Is Titled 'Men in Black: International'". Collider. Retrieved 2018.
  35. ^ "Kumail Nanjiani Goes Undercover on Reddit, YouTube and Twitter (GQ)" – via YouTube.
  36. ^ "Kumail Nanjiani to Star Opposite Dave Bautista in Action Comedy 'Stuber' (Exclusive)".
  37. ^ Haring, Bruce; Haring, Bruce (June 23, 2018). "20th Century Fox Sets Dates For Untitled James Mangold Ferrari Project, Kenneth Branagh's 'Death On The Nile'". Deadline Hollywood.
  38. ^ "Robert Downey Jr. Unveils Voice Cast for 'Voyage of Doctor Dolittle'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2018.
  39. ^ Otterson, Joe; Otterson, Joe (June 19, 2018). "Apple Orders 'Little America' Anthology Series From 'Big Sick' Duo, Lee Eisenberg". Variety. Retrieved 2019.
  40. ^ Burton, Bonnie. "Kumail Nanjiani's Little America Apple series to look at immigrant life". CNET. Retrieved 2019.
  41. ^ "Podcast: Staying In with Emily and Kumail". Podcast: Staying In with Emily and Kumail. April 18, 2020.
  42. ^ Spangler, Todd (March 19, 2020). "Kumail Nanjiani, Emily V. Gordon Debut Podcast About Living Your Best Quarantine Life". Variety. Retrieved 2020.
  43. ^ Baron, Zach (March 23, 2020). "Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon Have Some Experience with This". GQ. Retrieved 2020.
  44. ^ "This Week in Comedy Podcasts: Emily and Kumail Are Staying In". New York Magazine. March 26, 2020. Retrieved 2020.
  45. ^ Galuppo, Gia (January 17, 2019). "Kumail Nanjiani, Issa Rae to Star in Romantic Comedy 'The Lovebirds' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2019.
  46. ^ Kit, Borys (April 5, 2019). "Kumail Nanjiani in Talks to Join Angelina Jolie in Marvel's 'The Eternals' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2019.
  47. ^ Kumail Nanjiani to Star in Political Thriller 'The Independent' (Exclusive)
  48. ^ Marie, Jane (May 20, 2014). "The Secret Life of Marrieds: Why We Kept Our Marriage Secret for Years". Cosmopolitan. Retrieved 2017.
  49. ^ Marantz, Andrew (May 8, 2017). "Kumail Nanjiani's Culture-Clash Comedy". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2017.
  50. ^ Petski, Denise (November 15, 2018). "'The Twilight Zone': Kumail Nanjiani To Star In Episode Of CBS All Access Reboot". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 2018.
  51. ^ Kumail Nanjiani as Jarun Tann. BioWare Base. March 1, 2017.
  52. ^ "Halo 5: Guardians #HuntTheTruth - Has the Master Chief Gone AWOL?". May 17, 2015.

External links


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