Nawazuddin Siddiqui's humble beginning has been an inspiring story for many. One simply cannot deny that he is one of the most versatile actors we have in the film industry.
Recently, the actor grabbed a lot of eyeballs when he took to Twitter to express his anguish over a statement made by casting director Sanjay Chouhan. He had tweeted, "Thank you for making me realise that I cannot be paired along with the fair and handsome because I'm dark and not good looking.'
The controversy erupted when Sanjay Chouhan told a leading daily that they cannot cast a fair and handsome heroine opposite Nawaz. However, the director lost no time for some damage control and later said that he was misquoted and he would never say anything to hurt "Nawaz Sir."
Reacting to this, Nawaz was quoted as saying to IANS, "I was reacting to what I read about this gentleman's statement on the kind of actors I need to be cast with. I found the statement very strange. Did filmmakers actually consider the colour of my co-stars' skin before casting them with me? Yeh ladki gori hai yeh nahin chalegi...yeh ladka saawla hai issko banao Nawaz ka dost... Is that how actors are cast in our films? I thought actors were chosen for suitability and merit....Anyway, this gentleman says he was misquoted."
He further added, "But the fact is, I have faced prejudices all my life because of my dark complexion, because of my humble background and because I come from a small village. Prejudice is embedded deep in our minds. All of us are prejudiced. It begins at home where the mother says, Beta gori bahu le aao tab bachche kale nahin honge. As if my criteria for choosing a life partner must be the colour of her skin."
However, he refrained from pointing out fingers at any particular section of the society, but instead added, "I am not saying there is more prejudice in the film industry. It exists in every profession, every walk of life. In cinema. I don't think I've been rejected for being dark-skinned. Nor has any heroine refused to work with me for the way I look. But yes, you can't deny that leading men are supposed to look a particular way. Hero ka matlab hota hai gora-chitta(hero means fair-complexioned)."
He concluded by saying, "There is a lot of curiosity to see the children from film families. And invariably the question of how fair-skinned he or she comes up. Someone like me with no connection in the industry has to prove myself. Because I've no background in cinema and I don't look like a film actor. Yeh kya karega? That's how I was initially welcomed."