Ali Fazal first came on-screen as just another college student, strumming the guitar and searching for some sunshine. His brief screen appearance would have been easy to set aside, if not for his earnest performance.
But, from his brief stint in 3 Idiots to the bhaukaal of Mirzapur that well and truly shot him to fame, Fazal has truly come into his own as an actor.
As he sets off to cruise on the Nile as a murder suspect, we look back at this 'fukra's' journey to finding his feet in global cinema.
The 2013 sleeper hit Fukrey gave us a glimpse of Fazal's charm, as the brooding, broken-hearted musician, Zafar. And it finally got him love from both, the audience and the filmmakers.
Slowly, Fazal kept adding movies with novel stories to his kitty and though not all of them made a splash at the Box Office, it did land him the lead in Y-films', Bang Baaja Baaraat.
A hilarious drama that superbly broke down the big, fat Indian wedding, Bang Baaja Baraat was a rare treat in the still-developing world of web series, and Fazal was undoubtedly brilliant in it.
And soon, he had his first stint with Hollywood, with a cameo in Furious 7.
It was followed by yet another sleeper hit, Happy Bhag Jayegi where the audience at large--that was still warming up to web series--saw Fazal flex his acting muscles to display a hereto untapped comic side. After all, his earlier comedy Fukrey's designated comic relief was Chooncha.
Right at the heels of Happy Bhag Jayegi, came his second Hollywood film, Victoria & Abdul where he shared screen-space with Judi Dench - a star most upcoming actors would give an arm and a leg to work with.
However, his best was yet to come. Because it was Fazal's role of Guddu Bhaiya in Mirzapur that truly shot him to fame, granting him the 'ultimate' validation in the world of social media - a meme.
Jokes aside, it was a well-deserved rise to fame. Mirzapur was one of those rare shows where every actor was exceptional in his role.
And yet, Fazal's trigger-happy, brawny Guddu Bhaiya became one of the most popular Hindi web series' characters.
But Fazal still did not restrict himself to the tried and tested roles, and continued his experimental streak with movies like Milan Talkies, Prassthanam, House Arrest, and the latest, Death on the Nile.
Fazal is certainly not the first Bollywood star to appear in a Hollywood film. Hopefully, he won't be the last either, because art and talent should never be restricted to geographical boundaries.
But, it's definitely a celebration of his talent to see him bag roles in international ventures, while continuously serving us something new with every project. Looks like he finally got some sunshine!