Riz Ahmed becomes first Muslim and South-Asian actor to win Emmy with ‘Night Of’

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Riz Ahmed’s Emmy win meant more than just an award for “The Night Of.”

Ahmed became the first Muslim actor, as well as the first South-Asian actor, to win an acting Emmy when he took home the award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series Sunday night.

“I want to say it is always strange reaping the rewards of a story that’s based on real world suffering, but if this show has shown a light on some of the prejudice in our societies, Islamophobia, some of the injustice in our justice system, then maybe that is something,” he said on stage.

He also shouted out to South Asian Youth Action for helping him prepare for the role, and The Innocence Project.

Ahmed’s Nasir Khan, on “The Night Of,” is a Pakistani college student who winds up at Rikers Island after becoming involved in a murder investigation.

Ahmed’s Nasir Khan, on “The Night Of,” is a Pakistani college student who winds up at Rikers Island after becoming involved in a murder investigation.

In June, he told the Hollywood Reporter that he’d “rather be broke” than be typecast as “Terrorist No. 3.”

Speaking to Parliament in March, he warned that the lack of diversity on television could lead to extremism, particularly recruitment into ISIS.

Last year, Aziz Ansari became the first South-Asian person nominated for an acting Emmy, but lost to Jeffrey Tambor.

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