Ali Fazal

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Ali Fazal
Ali Fazal looking away from camera Ali Fazal graces the World Premiere of ‘Victoria and Abdul’.jpg
Fazal at the premiere of Victoria & Abdul, September 2017
Born (1986-10-15) 15 October 1986 (age 35)[1]
Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India
🏳️ Nationality
🎓 Alma materLa Martiniere College
The Doon School
St. Xavier's College
💼 Occupation
Actor, model
📆 Years active  2008–present
❤️ Partner(s)Richa Chadha[2]

Ali Fazal (pronounced [əliː fəˈzaːl]; born 15 October 1986) is an Indian actor and model. He made his screen debut with a small role in the English language film The Other End of the Line before appearing in the American television miniseries Bollywood Hero.[3]

Fazal made his Bollywood debut with a special appearance in 3 Idiots (2009) and he next appeared in Always Kabhi Kabhi (2011). His first success came in Fukrey (2013), and he was seen in supporting roles in films like Baat Ban Gayi (2013), Bobby Jasoos (2014) and Sonali Cable (2014).

He played the leading role in the horror film Khamoshiyan (2015) followed by his first American film Furious 7 (2015). He also played a role in Happy Bhag Jayegi opposite Diana Penty in 2016.

Fazal starred in the British-American film Victoria & Abdul, which depicts the relationship of Queen Victoria (Judi Dench) and her confidant, Indian servant Abdul Karim (Fazal).[4] The film premiered at the Venice Film Festival in 2017.[5] The costumes worn by the lead actors in the film have been added as part of the official display at Osborne House.[6]

In 2018, he played Guddu Pandit in Mirzapur.

Early life[edit]

Born in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India, Fazal's family hails from Allahabad.[7] He was brought up in a village near the Ganges. His father worked in a firm in the Middle East.[8] He grew up in his maternal grandparents' home with his grandparents and his mother since his parents were separated while he was a child.[9] The couple divorced when Fazal was 18.[10] He went to La Martiniere College in Lucknow and The Doon School in Dehra Dun.[10]

In 2004, he participated in school plays and engaged in debates.[11] He was selected for the role of Trinculo in the role play of The Tempest by William Shakespeare.[7] Fazal went to Mumbai and graduated in economics from St. Xavier's College.[12]


2008–11: early work[edit]

Fazal appeared in a small role in the James Dodson—directed romantic comedy film The Other End of the Line (2008).[13] The film was a critical and commercial failure.[14][15] He next appeared in the American television miniseries Bollywood Hero (2009) where he portrayed the role of Monty Kapoor.[13] During his second year of college, Saeed Akhtar Mirza saw him in a play and picked him for the lead of erotic thriller Ek Tho Chance (2009), alongside Amrita Arora and Saurabh Shukla.[7] The film focused on the realities and comedies inherent in life in Mumbai. The film premiered at 14th International Film Festival of Kerala.[16]

Ali Fazal looking at the camera
Fazal at a promotional event for Always Kabhi Kabhi, 2011

The same year, Fazal made his Bollywood film debut with Rajkumar Hirani's National Film Award-winning 3 Idiots, a film loosely based on the novel Five Point Someone by Chetan Bhagat.[17] He was doing a theatre play at Prithvi Theatre in Juhu, when a person from the film's production unit noticed him and referred him to Hirani.[12][18] Co-starring alongside Aamir Khan, Kareena Kapoor, R. Madhavan and Sharman Joshi, Fazal played the role of an engineering student, Joy Lobo. The film received critical acclaim and emerged as the highest-grossing Bollywood film of all time up until then, grossing 3,920 million (US$55 million) worldwide.[19]

In 2011, Fazal was picked up by Shahrukh Khan's production house, Red Chillies Entertainment for the Roshan Abbas–directed romance film Always Kabhi Kabhi.[20] Appearing opposite Giselli Monteiro, Fazal plays the role of Sameer Khanna and had to lose 15 kilos for the role.[18] The film received negative response from the critics but was a box office hit.[21] While Komal Nahta of Koimoi said Fazal acted reasonably well,[22] Gaurav Malani from The Times of India picked him as best in the cast.[23] Later in an interview, Fazal said that doing the film was not a good decision.[24]


Fazal's first release of 2013 was in the coming of age comedy film Fukrey, in which he portrayed the role of Zafar, a struggling musician.[25] The film along with his performance received mixed responses from critics. Nishi Tiwari from said he wore a "dazed expression" throughout the film,[26] and Saibal Chatterjee from NDTV felt his role was "underwritten".[27]

The same year, Fazal appeared in the romantic comedy film Baat Bann Gayi, which was considered a parody on Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors.[10] He portrayed the dual roles of Kabir, a successful novelist from Singapore, and Rasiya Bihari, a local don.[28] The film met with negative reactions from critics and failed at the box office, though Fazal was praised for his acting.[21] Faheem Ruhani from India Today considered him as an upcoming talent to "watch out for",[29] while The Times of India affirmed he is "standing out" from the cast.[30]

In 2014, Fazal appeared in a supporting role opposite Vidya Balan in the comedy-drama Bobby Jasoos. Initially, Fazal refused the role since he felt he had "nothing much to do in it", but later agreed because of the "unusual romance" between him and Balan.[31] Fazal's role as Tasawur, a popular local TV anchor who helps a Hyderabadi woman who aspires to be a detective (played by Balan), was well received. Taran Adarsh of Bollywood Hungama described Fazal as a "complete revelation": "Although pitted against a powerhouse performer like Vidya, Ali makes his presence felt with a wonderful performance".[32]

The same year he appeared in the film Sonali Cable opposite Rhea Chakraborty, where he portrayed the role of Raghu. Fazal did his first on-screen intimate scene for a song in the film along with Chakraborty.[33] His acting received mixed response from critics, where many criticised him for "recent stereotyped roles".[34] Mohar Basu from Koimoi commented, "Ali Fazal is not even close to what he is capable of. The actor has good potential and this film fails to unleash it",[35] though Renuka Vyavahare of The Times of India felt he was "likeable in his character".[36] Both films received mixed to negative response from critics and were declared to be box office flops.[21]

Fazal next took the lead role in the psychological horror thriller Khamoshiyan (2015).[37] He portrayed the role of Kabir, an alcoholic novelist, whose failed career and relationship forced him to move to Kashmir in search of an inspirational story. The film was a critical failure, though Fazal's performance was well received. Bollywood Hungama said: "He has a wide range of emotions that effortlessly inhabit his face".[38] The Hindu critic Arjun Kumar described him as a "natural performer with effective screen presence".[39] Reportedly, Fazal was offered a role in the American political thriller television series Homeland, but he had to reject the offer since he had already commenced shooting for Khamoshiyan and ultimately the role went to Nimrat Kaur.[40][41]

Fazal made his Hollywood film debut with a special appearance in the action film Furious 7, the seventh installment in The Fast and the Furious film series.[42] In the film review, The Hindu wrote: "Ali Fazal turns up in a fleeting cameo and before we could breath in his presence he is ejected out of the scenery".[43] Fazal said that he had only three scenes, but Subhash K. Jha from Bollywood Hungama considered those scenes "delightful".[44][45]

Fazal was next seen in an Indo-American film, For Here Or To Go? which revolves around two Indian immigrants who find it difficult to build a successful life away from home.[46] The film played at many international film festivals.[47] That same year, Fazal played the leading role in the Yash Raj Films youth studio Y-Films web-series Bang Baaja Baaraat.[48]

In 2016 Fazal played in Anand L. Rai's Happy Bhag Jayegi opposite Abhay Deol and Diana Penty. The film was a critical and commercial success.[49] Fazal featured alongside Kalki Koechlin, in Soni Razdan's Love Affair, a fictionalised version of the 1959 Nanavati murder case.[50][51] In addition, he has committed to star opposite Shriya Saran in Prakash Raj's romantic comedy Tadka.[52]

Ali Fazal recently shared a video of late Mr. Habib Painter performing qawwali titled, ‘Bohot kathin hai dagar panghat ki’[53]. Ali stated that he loves ghazals and qawwalis and has grown up listening to them. He feels inclined to hold on to the sounds of his childhood.

Personal life[edit]

Ali Fazal looking walking on a stage
Fazal walking the ramp at Lakme Fashion Week, 2015

In February 2015, Fazal joined a Cancerthon organised by NDTV and Fortis to create awareness about cancer and raising funds for children battling the disease.[54] Along with Tochi Raina, Fazal participated in a musical concert to raise funds for victims of the earthquake in Nepal.[55]

In 2014, Fazal made an entry on The Times of India's listing of the "Most Desirable Man".[56]

Fazal has been in a relationship with Richa Chadha, though their marriage plans had to be abandoned due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.[2]

In 2019 Power Brands honored Fazal with “Power Brand: Industry Trendsetter” at BFJA (Bollywood Film Journalist's Awards)[57]

On 17 June 2020, Fazal's mother died due to health complications in Lucknow.[58]



Year Film Role Notes Ref(s)
2008 The Other End of the Line Vij Special appearance [15]
2009 Ek Tho Chance Smridh Delayed [7]
3 Idiots Joy Lobo Special appearance [59]
2011 Always Kabhi Kabhi Sameer "Sam" Khanna [60]
2012 According to Plan A Abhi Short film [61]
2013 Fukrey Zafar [62]
Baat Ban Gayi Kabir / Rasiya Bihari [63]
2014 Bobby Jasoos Tasawur Sheikh [64]
Sonali Cable Raghu [65]
2015 Khamoshiyan Kabir Malhotra [66]
Furious 7 Safar Hollywood film
Special appearance
Cheers Himself Short film [69]
For Here Or To Go? Vivek Pandit Indo-American film [47]
2016 Pyaar Manga Hai Unknown Music Video
Happy Bhag Jayegi Guddu [71]
2017 Love Affair Pre-production [51]
Victoria & Abdul Abdul Karim English film [52]
Fukrey Returns Zafar
2018 Happy Phirr Bhag Jayegi Guddu
Tadka Siddharth [52]
2019 Milan Talkies Annu [72]
Prassthanam Ayushmann Singh
House Arrest Karan Netflix film [73]
2020 Death on the Nile Andrew Katchadouriaan Post-production


Year Film Role Notes
2009 Bollywood Hero Monty Kapoor 3 episodes

Web Series[edit]

Year Title Role Produced by References
2015 Bang Baaja Baaraat Pawan Y-Films [74]
2016 Sex Chat with Pappu & Papa Cameo in Episode 2-Pregnancy Y-Films
2018 Mirzapur Govind 'Guddu' Pandit Amazon Prime Video


  1. Srivastava, Pranati (15 October 2018). "Ali Fazal birthday: Some unknown facts about the Fukrey actor". Times Now News. Retrieved 1 December 2018.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Ali Fazal on his wedding with Richa Chadha: I don't know what kind of wedding celebration it will be now, given the new norms". Times of India. 17 May 2020. Archived from the original on 6 Jun 2020. Retrieved 6 Jun 2020.
  3. "Actor Ali Fazal On Sharing Screen Space With Judi Dench in Victoria And Abdul". Verve Magazine. 2017-09-15. Retrieved 2020-05-19.
  4. "'Victoria And Abdul': A 130-year-old story for our times". The Daily Star Newspaper - Lebanon. 2017-09-05. Retrieved 2017-09-21.
  5. "Ali Fazal's provocative British drama Victoria and Abdul goes to Venice Film Festival". 2017-08-30. Retrieved 2017-09-21.
  6. "Iconic Judi Dench film costumes to go on display at Queen Victoria's former home". The Daily Mirror. Retrieved 23 July 2017.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Singh, Raghuvendra (25 July 2014). "I would do Brokeback Mountain with Ranveer Singh". Filmfare. Retrieved 28 September 2015.
  8. Mar 5, Bangalore Mirror Bureau | Updated:; 2017; Ist, 01:00. "Small Talk with Ali Fazal: 'I've been shot twice'". Bangalore Mirror. Retrieved 2020-05-27.
  9. Fazal, Ali (16 January 2015). "The city with the filmy angle". India Today. Retrieved 28 September 2015.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Sattar, Saimi (25 January 2015). "A second act". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 1 October 2015. Retrieved 28 September 2015. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  11. Vijayakar, R.M. (26 January 2015). "Meet 'Khamoshiyaan' Stars Alia Fazal, Sapna Pabbi and Gurmeet Chaudhary". India West. Retrieved 28 September 2015.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Kaur, Amarjot (7 July 2014). "Life in the fast lane". The Tribune. Retrieved 28 September 2015.
  13. 13.0 13.1 "Will always cherish my part in 'Fast & Furious': Ali Fazal". The Hindu. 3 July 2014. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  14. "At the other end of the line?". The Times of India. 5 November 2008. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  15. 15.0 15.1 Pais, Arthur J (3 November 2008). "Shriya's Hollywood debut a dud". Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  16. "'Ek Tho Chance' is a people's film'". Deccan Herald. 11 December 2009. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  17. Nair, Patcy (23 December 2009). "An exclusive interview with Raju Hirani". Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  18. 18.0 18.1 Sahu, Deepika (14 June 2011). "Ali Fazal's the first actor in his family". The Times of India. Retrieved 28 September 2015.
  19. "Chennai Express Crosses Ek Tha Tiger Worldwide In Ten Days". Box Office India. 19 August 2013. Archived from the original on 3 November 2013. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  20. Unnikrishnan, Chaya (31 January 2015). "This Valentine's Day, I will be alone: Ali Fazal". Daily News and Analysis. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 "Ali Fazal: Box Office Details and Filmography". Box Office India. Archived from the original on 29 September 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2015. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  22. Nahta, Komal (17 June 2011). "Always Kabhi Kabhi Review". Koimoi. Retrieved 12 October 2014.
  23. Malani, Gaurav (17 June 2011). "Always Kabhi Kabhi: Movie Review". The Times of India. Retrieved 12 October 2014.
  24. Wadhwa, Akash (2 September 2014). "Ali Fazal: Always Kabhi Kabhi was a dent in my career". The Times of India. Retrieved 12 October 2014.
  25. Chopra, Anupama (15 June 2013). "Anupama Chopra's review: Fukrey". Hindustan Times. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  26. Nishi, Tiwari (14 June 2013). "Review: Fukrey doesn't really work". Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  27. Chatterjee, Saibal (13 June 2013). "Fukrey movie review". NDTV. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  28. Maniar, Parag (7 October 2013). "Ali Fazal challenged by his dual role". The Times of India. Retrieved 12 October 2014.
  29. Ruhani, Faheem (11 October 2013). "Movie Review: Baat Bann Gayi". India Today. Retrieved 12 October 2014.
  30. Anshuman, Karan (11 October 2013). "Film Movie Review: Baat Bann Gayi". Mumbai Mirror. Retrieved 12 October 2014.
  31. Wadhwa, Akash (13 August 2014). "I didn't want to do Bobby Jasoos says Ali Fazal". The Times of India. Retrieved 12 October 2014.
  32. Adarsh, Taran (4 July 2014). "Bobby Jasoos Movie Review". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 13 October 2014.
  33. Dipti (2 October 2014). "'I chose Bhatt over Homeland'". Deccan Chronicle. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
  34. Adarsh, Taran (17 October 2014). "Sonali Cable Movie Review". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
  35. Basu, Mohar (17 October 2014). "Sonali Cable Review". Koimoi. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
  36. "Sonali Cable Movie Review". The Times of India. 17 October 2014. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
  37. "Glad I said yes to 'Khamoshiyan': Ali Fazal". The Indian Express. 22 January 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  38. "Khamoshiyan Critic Review". Bollywood Hungama. 30 January 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  39. Kumar, Arjun (30 January 2015). "Movie review of Khamoshiyan: A quiet date". The Hindu. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  40. "Ali Fazal missed chance to star in 'Homeland' for 'Bobby Jasoos'". The Indian Express. 30 June 2014. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  41. "Ali Fazal "Happy" About Nimrat Kaur's Role in Homeland". NDTV. 11 August 2014. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  42. Masand, Rajeev (14 September 2013). "Not Deepika, not Sonam, Fukrey's Ali Fazal lands role in 'Fast and Furious 7'". CNN-IBN. Retrieved 20 September 2013.
  43. Kumar, Anuj (3 April 2015). "Fast & Furious-7: Time to apply the brakes". The Hindu. Retrieved 20 September 2015.
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  45. Jha, Subhash K. (3 April 2015). "Subhash K Jha speaks about Furious 7 (a.k.a The Fast & The Furious 7) in Hindi". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 20 September 2015.
  46. "For Here Or To Go? - About this film". Indiegogo. Retrieved 30 September 2015.
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  48. "In conversation with the makers of web series 'Bang Baaja Baaraat'". The Indian Express. 2015-10-15. Retrieved 2015-11-23.
  49. Bhatnagar, Rohit (26 September 2015). "Selfie moment for Ali Fazal on the sets of 'Happy Bhaag Jayegi'". The Asian Age. Retrieved 30 September 2015.
  50. Pathak, Ankur (12 March 2015). "Kalki Koechlin & Ali Fazal gears up for Soni Razdan's Love Affair". The Times of India. Retrieved 24 March 2016.
  51. 51.0 51.1 "Ali Fazal replaces Arjun Rampal in Soni Razdan's 'Love Affair'". The Indian Express. 2 March 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  52. 52.0 52.1 52.2 "'Tadka' a sweet love story'". The Indian Express. 13 April 2016. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
  53. "Ali Fazal: Ghazals, qawwalis are the sounds of my childhood". Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  54. "Salman Khan, Kajol Join the Fight Against Cancer". NDTV. 10 February 2015. Retrieved 30 September 2015.
  55. "Tochi Raina to raise funds for Nepal quake victims". The Indian Express. 29 May 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  56. "Times Most Desirable Men 2014 - Results". The Times of India. Retrieved 30 September 2015.
  58. "Ali Fazal's Mother Dies Due To Health Complications; "I'll Live The Rest Of Yours For You," Actor's Heart-Wrenching Tweet". NDTV. 17 Jun 2020. Retrieved 18 Jun 2020.
  59. Baksi, Dibyojyoti (14 December 2011). "3 Idiots' Joy Lobo turns negative". Hindustan Times. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
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  61. "According to Plan A (2012)". IMDb. 19 February 2012. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
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  63. Dias, Noel Singh (19 October 2013). "Ali Fazal on Baat Ban Gayi". The Free Press Journal. Archived from the original on 1 October 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2015. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  64. Vijayakar, R.M. (11 July 2014). "Bobby Jasoos: It's Cute, Serious and Comic but It's No Thriller". India West. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  65. Dey, Simantini (17 October 2014). "Sonali Cable review: Rhea's annoyingly bubbly, Ali Fazal stuck playing arm candy". Firstpost. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  66. "Khamoshiyan to release on January 30". The Times of India. 10 December 2014. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  67. Newbould, Chris (31 May 2015). "From Bolly to Furious 7 – Ali Fazal's life in the fast lane". The National. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  68. Altatis, Conviron (30 June 2015). "'Furious 8' Cast With Zhang Ziyi: Will It Break 'Furious 7' Box Office Record?". Yibada. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  69. "Ali Fazal's 'Cheers' to release on Mother's Day". The Times of India. 8 May 2015. Retrieved 20 September 2013.
  70. "'For Here or To Go?' Sparks U.S. Immigration Policy Dialogue". India West. 15 May 2015. Retrieved 30 September 2015.
  71. Bhatnagar, Rohit (26 September 2015). "Selfie moment for Ali Fazal on the sets of 'Happy Bhaag Jayegi'". The Asian Age. Retrieved 29 September 2015.
  72. "'Milan Talkies' to release on March 15 - Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 2019-02-20.
  73. "House Arrest ft. Ali Fazal & Shriya Pilgaonkar | Date Announcement | Netflix India". YouTube.
  74. "Web series is a 'different film' for Ali Fazal". The Indian Express. 5 November 2015. Retrieved 29 April 2016.

External links[edit]