London, RP, Northern, Manchester, Pakistani, Indian
Whether he's playing an American investment analyst or a professor in Lahore ('Reluctant Fundamentalist'), a college student in America ('Criminal Justice'), a jihadist from Sheffield ('Four Lions') or a South London wannabe gangster (III Manors), Riz's acting talent and vocal dexterity (he's also an acclaimed MC) have made him one of the UK's most sought-after young actors. Eloquent and self-assured - just listen to his reel.
Emmy award winner Riz Ahmed is a critically acclaimed actor, writer, creator, producer, musician, director and activist. He became one of Hollywood’s most sought after artists following the explosive success of HBO’s THE NIGHT OF, written and created by the legendary Steven Zaillan for which he won an Emmy Award, and was Golden Globe and SAG nominated. He went on to star in successful feature films including Disney’s ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY, Jacques Audiard’s THE SISTERS BROTHERS and most-recently Sony/Marvel’s VENOM. He first garnered industry attention in festival favorites FOUR LIONS and NIGHTCRAWLER.
Up next, he stars in director Darius Marder’s SOUND OF METAL about a professional drummer’s descent into unexpected hearing loss. The film premiered at the Toronto Film Festival and was acquired by Amazon Films. He also will star in Bassam Tariq’s MOGUL MOWGLI, which will debut at the 2020 Berlin Film Festival. He plays a young British rapper who is about to start his first world tour when a crippling tragedy strikes. Ahmed also co-wrote the screenplay and is producing.
Ahmed recently co-created and sold a modern-day take on HAMLET, a feature film he will also topline. He has also sold a nine-part drama series called ENGLISTAN, a revisionist history about a British Pakistani family over 40 of the most eventful years of recent British history, from 1979 to 2019.
As Riz MC, Ahmed came up in the London music scene as a rap battle champion, going on to write and perform both as a solo artist and with his band, Swet Shop Boys. His provocative solo release Post 9/11 Blues was banned before a viral groundswell forced it into radio, and Englistan was critically acclaimed for its exploration of identity. The Swet Shop Boys album, Cashmere, landed the group prestigious gigs including Coachella and Glastonbury. In a nod to their cultural impact, participants at the Los Angeles International Airport protest against Trump’s immigration ban were heard chanting lyrics from “T5.”
As a vocal advocate for inclusion, Ahmed’s award-winning piece in the Nikesh Shukla–edited collection of essays The Good Immigrant, has been dubbed “essential reading”. In Spring 2017, he was a prestigious guest-speaker at the British Parliament’s House of Commons where he spoke about diversity and representation. That same year, he graced the cover of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People.