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The Big Bang Theory's Kunal Nayyar reveals he was desperate to shake off Raj and sitcom 'barrier' in Netflix's criminal

THE Big Bang Theory's Kunal Nayyar says he couldn't wait to shake off his character on the sitcom as he appears in Netflix's Criminal: UK.

The actor has swapped his sweet nature and dog loving character of Raj in the popular comedy for a cold blooded killer called Sandeep Sing in the British police anthology series.

Kunal, 39, spoke to The Metro about his time his new serious and more intense role and how he hopes it will enable him to break through the sitcom 'barrier.'

He said: "There was definitely [a deliberate decision], it was not like, "oh I’m only going to do this kind of work", but it came at the right time. It was definitely what I wanted to do.

‘Also physically, I’m so recognisable from my voice, I’m so recognisable from my face… it was important to do something that completely breaks the barrier.’ 

His old Big Bang character seems to be very much a part of Raj now, as he admitted: "I still have some mannerisms of Raj, just as I have some mannerisms of this character, but I wanted to make sure that whatever I did next was like, 'Wait, who is this? Oh My God. Is that the guy from The Big Bang?!', as opposed to 'Oh there’s Raj, playing a killer'".


"I hope if there’s anything that can be taken away from this is that that’s what I would have achieved – that the first instance is 'wow, they’re so different!'"

Kunal appeared in every single episode of The Big Bang Theory, which ran from 2007-2019.

The star also revealed that he was inspired by former Doctor Who actor David Tennant who starred in Criminal's recent episodes, and decided to reach our for the role.

"I was in London with the casting director but for another project, and when that meeting ended, as we were walking out, she mentioned 'Have you seen this show? There could be a part that I think you would be good for.'

"I said no I hadn’t, but I came home and I watched it, and right after I was emailing her going 'I want it! When is it? How can I be in it?!'"


Kunal will portray convicted killer Sandeep Singh in new Netflix show Criminal, and even his co-stars were shocked by his performance. 

In the show, Sandeep wants to propose a deal with the detective team as they investigate a case. 

During the trailer, viewers watch as the murderer is taken into the interrogation room and his cold and calculating persona is clear. 

Kunal’s co-star, Shubham Saraf, spoke to Metro.co.uk about how the actor had left a huge impact on the rest of the cast. 

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