Nawazuddin Siddiqui

Wasn’t Nawazuddin Siddiqui’s memoir (An Ordinary Life) weighed down and buoyed by langorous romances, hot, fleeting flings and the pain of heartbreak? To be sure, we thought, a gust of rain-laden air amidst the aridity of primped-up hagiographies. Not just women, the book was remarkable in its candour about Nawaz’s various shortcomings—real, imagined, alleged. All this is now sharpened to a point: the news that his wife Aalia has filed for divorce. “Problems for the last 10 years” (out of 11), she said, and explained how the lockdown gave her clarity. At home in Budhana, UP, Nawaz will have a sombre Eid.

Mumbai: Bollywood actress Tabu and actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui (R) look on during a launch event, in Mumbai.

PTI Photo

Who knew Nawazuddin Siddiqui could channelise his inner gangs­ter, aided by that handsome, many-­muscled face, so profitably in Sacred Games and McMafia. At the international Emmy Awards in NY, he won for the latter. We knew he’d cross oceans with ease. It has finally happened.

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Executive producer/director/writer James Watkins, left, actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui and executive producer Dixie Linder pose with the best drama series award for "McMafia," during the 47th International Emmy Awards gala at the Hilton New York, in New York.

Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

Bollywood actors Nawazuddin Siddiqui And Aathiya Shetty promote their film Motichoor Chaknachoor in Mumbai.

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Checks rock still—a foundation of style, but the ’70s were when they swaggered the loudest: colour, cut and wide adoption marked a decade as definiti­vely as auburn light seeping through long hair. In a retro photo­shoot, Sacred Games 2 stars Saif, Nawazuddin and Kalki Koechlin revive the vibes (oh yes, the wooden panels). Kalki, a carrier of styles, looks smashing. Nawaz’s Van Gogh-themed suit’s the ugliest. Go change it!

Bollywood actors Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Amrita Rao pose for photos during promotions of their upcoming film 'Thackeray', in New Delhi.

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Bollywood actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui poses for photographs at Priyanka Chopra and musician Nick Jonas wedding reception in Mumbai.

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Writer-Director Nandita Das flanked by Bollywood actors Rasika Dugal (L) and Nawazuddin Siddiqui during a promotion for their upcoming movie 'Manto', in New Delhi.

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Kubra Sait and Nawazuddin Siddiqui in the series

Bollywood actors Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Radhika Apte, with Director Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwane during the Red Carpet Event of Netflix 'Sacred Games' in New Delhi.

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Bollywood actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui (L) receives the award for best male actor from Rekha during the IIFA Awards function at the Siam Niramit Theatre in Bangkok.

Courtesy IIFA Awards/Twitter

The Shiv Sena has just turned 52 and Nawazuddin Siddiqui, who is playing the party’s late founder Bal Thackeray in a biopic, was on the sets for the birthday bash. “Balasaheb Thackeray was a transparent personality who empowered the common man and it is a lifetime experience essaying him,” said Nawazuddin. But are those glasses transparent?

Else­where, the cast of Manto (Nan­dita Das, Nawaz­uddin, Rasika Dugal and Tahir Bha­sin) line up before the film’s screening.

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Actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui poses for photographers during a photo call for the film 'Manto' at the 71st international film festival, Cannes, southern France.

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Actor Tahir Raj Bhasin, from left, director Nandita Das, actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Rasika Dugal pose for photographers during a photo call for the film 'Manto' at the 71st international film festival, Cannes, southern France.


Actors Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Nana Patekar during the closing ceremony of 8th Theatre Olympics organized by Delhi's National School of Drama, in Mumbai.

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Attending a session on his upcoming film Manto at the Jaipur Lit Fest alongside director Nandita Das, Nawazuddin Siddiqui was asked how he had prepared to play the title role. He answered that he’d had a hard time getting into character as Manto spoke only truth while he himself was a frequent liar. He said, “I am not like Manto and that was a challenge.” We praise him for his honesty.

Photograph by Getty Images

Photograph by Getty Images

Nawazuddin Siddiqui is widely admired for his sensitive, measured acting. It’s his pen that is guilty of rampant, meretricious over-acting. The not­­ches-­­­­on-­­­the ­­bedpost content of his autobiography An Ord­inary Life shows him up as a boastful dafoos (for example, Niharika Singh, above, ref­u­ted the det­ails). He didn’t even have the decency to tell any of the women beforehand. The book, thank heavens, is withdrawn. However, it is still available in many bookstores.

Photograph by Getty Images

Photograph by Alamy

Babumoshai Bandookbaaz

Bollywood actors Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Bidita Bag and Shraddha Das during the promotion of their upcoming film 'Babumoshai Bandookbaaz' in Bhopal.

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Bollywood actors Saif Ali Khan, Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Radhika Apte during launch of the web series Netflix's Sacred Games in Mumbai.

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The ‘intimate scenes’ in Babumoshai Ban­­d­­oo­kbaaz jangled Naw­azuddin Siddiqui’s nerves, but he soldiered on, possibly taking heart from his co-star, Bidita Bag. The ‘scenes’ scared off the original choice, Chit­rangada Singh. As the dasher pulls a rick, with Bag in tow, for the trailer launch in Mumbai, he gushes about how his role is like the ‘desi James Bond’. Nawaz plays a contract killer in UP; but his analogy stands, for we like him.

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Screening the curtain-raiser of Manto at the riviera meant Rasika Duggal, Nawazuddin and director Nandita Das also had a shot taken.

Actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui

Photograph by Amit Haralkar

Nawazuddin Siddiqui has that chameleon quality so treasured by actors; a quality that now sees him transform into Saadat Hasan Manto—that bard of the open sores of Partition, and the homely folks who all shared in the creation of the nightmare. His efforts are for Nandita Das’s biopic, Manto.

Bollywood actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui being felicitated during the 19th edition of National School of Drama’s International Drama Festival Bharat Rang Mahotsav 2017, in New Delhi.

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Bollywood actors Shahrukh Khan, Sunny Leone and Nawazuddin Siddiqui during the success party of film Raees, in Mumbai.

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Bollywood actors Shahrukh Khan and Sunny Leone during the success party of film Raees, in Mumbai.

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Triumph of the Will Dasrath Manjhi, from Bihar's Gaya district, chisel­led a road through hills in memory of his wife who would have lived if it were there. Nawazuddin will play him in a biopic, Manjhi—The Mountain Man.

AFP (From Outlook 31 August 2015)