Kumail Nanjiani has come a long way since 2009, when the stand-up, writer, and actor stressed out with us about whether he should just bite the bullet and start his own Wikipedia page. Six years later, Nanjiani has carved out a niche as one of Hollywood’s most persistently delightful character actors; he stars right now on two different TV shows (including one he co-created), hosts a podcast that earned him a spot on the new X-Files revival, and has become the proud subject of a happy and growing entry on the online encyclopedia, presumably written by people who are not Kumail Nanjiani.
Now he’s taking the next big step on the comedy ladder by entering into the orbit of Judd Apatow, the man whose body secretes 90 percent of Hollywood’s precious supply of Comedy Movie Legitimacy. (The other 10 percent, of course, is harvested from the sweat-drenched gym clothes of Paul Feig and Adam McKay.) Apatow has signed on to produce Big Sick, a new script written by Nanjiani and his wife and writing partner, Emily V. Gordon, based on “true events in their lives.” (Presumably, it’s about all the shocking drama of two people trying to get some TV producing done in between their busy lives playing video games together.) The film is being directed by The State’s Michael Showalter, who’s worked with Nanjiani before; the stand-up’s first TV-writing gig was on Showalter’s late-2000s comedy of self-important self-involvement, Michael And Michael Have Issues.
Deadline is reporting that Nanjiani will star in the movie, which would be his first lead role in a major film. That’s good news for us, since it’ll hopefully allow us to finally offload all these “Kumail Nanjiani: Is He The New Amy Schumer?!” headlines we’ve been stockpiling for the last few years.