Now it can be told. The extraordinarily talented Nawazuddin Siddiqui is seen in only one sequence of Garth Davis’ Lion. It’s a sequence where in a small apartment in Kolkata he’s seen plotting with Tannishtha Chatterjee to cause harm to the film’s little protagonist Saroo (Sunny Pawar).
Nawaz is on the screen for barely 3-4 minutes. Not a very auspicious beginning to his international career. But the actor has another story to tell. “I’ve no interest in doing small parts in international films just to be visible abroad. I’m very happy with the work that I am getting here in my own country. Of course I’m open to offers from any part of the world—why just Hollywood?—as long as the part is interesting.”
As far as Lion is concerned Nawaz says, “The director Garth Davis personally called me and requested me to do the part. I couldn’t say no. It was a good experience. But I don’t see Lion as my international launch. The film will benefit two Indian actors Dev Patel and the little boy Sunny Pawar who is phenomenal.”
But his admirers in India will wonder why Nawaz agreed to do such a bit part in an international film. Nawaz is in a long line of distinguished actors from Bollywood who have agreed to do small parts in Hollywood films: Amitabh Bachchan in The Great Gatsby, Irrfan Khan in The Amazing Spiderman, Anil Kapoor in Mission Impossible, Tabu in The Life Of Pi, etc.