Riz Ahmed thinks equality for minority groups is a «win for all of us».
The 38-year-old actor was the first Muslim to be nominated for the Best Actor gong at the Oscars for his portrayal of a deaf drummer in ‘Sound of Metal’, and Riz thinks it’s important there’s better representation for minority groups in the movie industry.
He said: «All of us have won when we’re kind of moving forwards together as a culture in a way that allows a lot of people to feel seen and valued.»
The London-born actor admits that making the movie changed his perception of the deaf community, saying «it’s a culture, a way of being in the world».
He told Sky News: «The deaf community are the best listeners that I’ve ever met because this thing isn’t just about your ears, it’s about your attention and your focus and your body.»
Riz also admitted that playing a deaf character was a «tremendous challenge» for him.
He explained: «For me as an actor, those kinds of nonverbal communication, drums and sign language, they opened me up as a performer.»
Riz actually spent «months» immersing himself in his ‘Sound of Metal’ role.
The actor was so determined to excel in the role that he spent months learning sign language and how to play the drums correctly.
He previously shared: «I spent seven months learning drums, learning sign language, being immersed in these communities. I’m a workaholic. I really love structure. I could be a bit of a control freak.»
The ‘Four Lions’ star recalled how he was so excited to film the movie he couldn’t sleep the night before the cameras started rolling.
He added: «I actually discovered the day before we shot the scene that I was doing a weird thing with my face when I was playing drums. I was like, ‘Why didn’t anybody tell me?'»