Why comedian Kumail Nanjiani needs to be on your radar right now

If you haven’t heard the name “Kumail Nanjiani”, count this as the first of many times you will. He is the “It” actor-comedian of the moment thanks to his fresh and funny rom-com film, The Big Sick - the true story of his love affair with a girl in a coma.
To bring you up to speed with all things Kumail Nanjiani, we have compiled a list of the things you should know about him:

• Nanjiani was born in Karachi, Pakistan and spent his childhood there
• He arrived in the U.S. aged 18 to study a double major in philosophy and computer science
• Is from a family of doctors
• Loves romantic comedies, especially mushy ones
• Before becoming a comedian, he spent five years working in the technology industry

Kumail Nanjiani  Silicon Valley
• His breakthrough role came when he was cast  in HBO’s Silicon Valley as a tech nerd
• Nanjiani is a big fan of Hugh Grant. He was inspired to do stand-up comedy after seeing Grant’s speech in Four Weddings and a Funeral
• His dad is a prankster who would record his voice doing spooky sounds and then play them back on a hidden boom box to scare Kumail
The Shining is his favourite horror movie
• Is a massive gamer  - he spent his formative years huddled in his bedroom playing Golden Axe on his Sega Genesis
• His favourite meal since he was a child is the South Indian mixed-rice dish Biryani
• Is a die-hard fan of the X-Files
• When The Big Sick was focus-grouped, it was liked more than Bridesmaids and Trainwreck

Kumail Nanjiani in Fist Fight

• He recently appeared in the Ice Cube comedy Fist Fight
• Nanjiani’s dad in The Big Sick is played by Bollywood legend Anupam Kher. It is the 500th film he has starred in.
• Nanjiani proposed to his now wife with a $20 ring from Walmart
• He is neighbours with Baby Driver director Edgar Wright
• His high school in Pakistan has already produced a two-time Oscar winner. It’s not him.
• He loved watching Knight Rider as a kid
• His parents wanted him to have an arranged marriage
• Was married by a Muslim cleric who had Beyonce as his ringtone

Kumail Nanjiani X files
Source: [Entertainment Weekly / Fox]

• Nanjiani stars in the recent six-episode revival of The X-Files
• He wanted to cry when he met Tom Skerritt because he loves the American TV show, Picket Fences
• Starred with Snoop Dogg and Julia Louis Dreyfus in an American clothing store ad campaign
• Has an 8 year old cat called Bagel
• He had a go-to move with women: he would write their name in his native language, Urdu. He won his wife over with that manoeuvre.
• Critics love him and are gushing over his semi-autobiographical love story. The Wall Street Journal called The Big Sick “a cure for the common comedy”
• Amy Schumer is one of his creative idols
• At any given time, he will have 8 chocolates in his kitchen drawer. Hazlenut is his favourite.
• He has 1.5 million Twitter followers
• His biggest guilty pleasure is street food: “Gyros are like a meat-flavoured fruit roll-up”

Kumail and Emily
Source: [LA Times]

• Nanjiani doesn’t like to dance or sing but will make an exception for his wife :)

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