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Friday, May 17, 2024

Riz Ahmad, first British-Pakistani to lift the Emmy Award

News Analysis |

Riz Ahmad became the first Asian British-Pakistani Muslim to lift an Emmy award in San Francisco for his leading role in the HBO’s limited episode series, ‘The Night Of’.

The ceremony that was held on a Sunday night had a glittering moment for Ahmad when he was called up on stage to lift the prestigious award at perhaps the pinnacle of his acting career.

Ahmad was nominated for his leading role in the eight-episode crime drama, The Night of, where he played his role as Nasir Naz Khan. Nasir Naz Khan is a young Pakistani student, who get caught in the middle of the murder investigation and is sent to Rikers Island Prison Complex.

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The drama has cautiously depicted the consequences of social injustices found in western societies and their impact on the victims.

Racial discrimination and Islamophobia are primary themes running through the heart of the plot.

The 34-year old in his acceptance speech said, “It’s always strange reaping the rewards of a story that’s based on real-world suffering,”

“But if this show has shown a light on some of the prejudice in our society, Islamophobia, some of the injustice in our justice system, then maybe that’s something.”

He also praised the role of the Innocence Project and South Asian Youth Action, a Non-governmental organization working diligently to exonerate the wrongly convicted victims.

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Archie Punjabi is the only South Asian female before him who lifted the Emmy Award in 2010 for her role in “Good Wife”.

Ahmad has also starred in Una, Jason Bourne, Star Wars I, and Rogue One. He has been included in the list of Top 100 influential people in the world, with an introduction of American composer, playwright, and creator of Broadway’s Hamilton Lin-Manuel Miranda.

The actor has also worked in movies like The Road to Guantanamo, Four Lions, Mohsin Hamid’s Reluctant Fundamentalist and his role in 2014’s Nightcrawler with Jake Gyllenhaal