First up, here's a piece of trivia to warm your hearts. Did you know that the man credited with single-handedly reversing the idea that Bollywood is for every aspiring actor from small towns had done 26 films before we even knew his name? The twists and turns of his life could make a great script, but more than his acting, Nawazudin Siddiqui is Bollywood's qunitessential hero who has made us fall in love with grit and determination in real life.
On his 41st birthday on Tuesday, we take a look at five of his blink-and-you-will--miss roles in Hindi films. These fleeting brushes with fame got him where he wanted to reach -- the big screen -- but no one recognised him.
Nawazuddin Siddiqui's first onscreen appearance was in Aamir Khan's Sarfarosh in 1999. He played a local criminal who is arrested and interrogated after a raid at Victoria House in the film.
His next film was in the same year, another great piece of cinema starring Manoj Bajpayee. Nawazuddin was seen as a waiter in the movie.
Munnabhai MBBS (2003)
Nawazuddin played a petty criminal who pickpockets Sunil Dutt's wallet (Sanjay Dutt's dad in the film as well) in the Rajkumar Hirani hit.
Black Friday (2004)
Asgar Mukadam, one of the men involved in the blast, was none other than actor Nawaziuddin Siddiqui! Kay kay's interrogation with Nawazuddin is an amazing scene you've got to watch.
Manorama Six Feet Under (2007)
A local goon who flaunts flashy shades in the desert. Trust Nawazuddin to play the character with perfection.
And here are five films that offered him roles lengthy enough to explore his skills.
Gangs of Wasseypur (2012)
Anurag Kashyap created the grand canvas that Nawazuddin's acting prowess needed. After his portrayal of Faizal Khan, Manoj Bajpayee's son in the movie, life was never the same for Nawazuddin.
The IB officer who could almost see behind Vidya Balan's lies could only have been A Khan, played by Nawazuddin.
Paan Singh Tomar (2012)
The finnese with which Nawazuddin essayed the role of Gopi, the gang member of Irrfan Khan who betrays him is simply mesmerizing. One of the most trusted man in the gang, he ends up compromising everyone's lives.
Nawazuddin played the main antagonist in Salman Khan-starrer Kick. Shiv Gajra's evil laugh is simply unforgettable.
A criminal who robs banks and kills people but also turns around to give a guilt trip to his opponent. Sriram Raghavan's Badlapur could not have been the same experience were it not for Nawazuddin.