His Emmy-nominated starring role as real-life strip club impresario and killer Steve Banerjee in the Hulu limited series Welcome to Chippendales complements the spectrum that stand-up comic actor, writer and producer Kumail Nanjiani has already shown in front of the camera and behind the scenes of Hollywood.
From 2014 to 2019, Nanjiani mainly sat behind a screen and impersonated a dry programmer on the HBO comedy Silicon Valley.
With his wife Emily V. Gordon, Nanjiani shared an Oscar nomination for the original screenplay for The Big Sick, a 2017 semi-autobiographical film in which he played a version of himself.
Nanjiani’s Chippendales Emmy nomination is his second. In 2019, he was nominated to Guest Actor in a Drama for his performance as a stand-up actor in the remake of The Twilight Zone.
Nanjiani and Gordon are executive producers of Little America, a BAFTA-nominated Apple TV+ anthology series exploring the immigrant experience. So far, two seasons of eight episodes each have been streamed.
Nanjiani is mentoring Max’s revived 2023 series Project Greenlight alongside Issa Rae, his co-star in the 2020 Netflix romantic comedy The Lovebirds, and film director Gina Prince-Bythewood.
Nanjiani, a Pakistani-American, played the first South Asian hero in a Marvel film in Eternals. His performance drew less attention than his physical transformation into “jacked” status in preparation for the role.
Nanjiani kept his body a secret in his breakthrough dramatic role in Chippendales. Amid the screen’s scantily clad, circling bodies, it’s Nanjiani’s suit-wearing banerjee who mesmerizes with his stillness, awkwardness, and slow-burning resentment.