Riz Ahmed on Politics, Identity, and Being Brown in Hollywood

Riz Ahmed became the first actor of South Asian descent and the first Muslim to win an Emmy last year when he picked up the award for Outstanding Lead Actor in A Limited Series for his starring role in the HBO drama, The Night Of. In the brand-new Marvel movie Venom, he plays the villainous Carlton Drake opposite Tom Hardy’s titular anti-hero. Off the big screen, he uses his unique platform to bring attention to issues from the lack of minority representation on T.V. to Islamophobia and racism. He’s also an old classmate of Mehdi Hasan’s, and this week on Deconstructed the two discuss their complex identities and the difficulty of being the only muslim in the room.

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