After his memorable role in the last Fast and Furious franchise, Ali Fazal continues to make waves in Hollywood. All those who didn’t know, Ali is currently working with veteran actress Judi Dench in Stephen Frears’ next film, Victoria and Abdul, where he plays the role of Abdul Karim, the young clerk from India who became an unlikely confidante and teacher to Queen Victoria, played by Judi Dench.

The film is about the extraordinary story of an unexpected friendship in the later years of Queen Victoria’s remarkable rule. When Abdul Karim, a young clerk, travels from India to participate in the Queen’s Golden Jubilee, he is surprised to find favor with the Queen herself. As the Queen questions the constrictions of her long-held position, the two forge an unlikely and devoted alliance with loyalty to one another that her household and inner circle attempt to destroy. As the friendship deepens, the Queen begins to see a changing world through new eyes and joyfully reclaims her humanity.

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“My excitement knows no bounds and yet I have to keep it all subtle. This opportunity is one of a kind and I can only hope I give my country a good reason to be proud of.  Stephen Frears is a legend in himself and a beautiful man. So the experience is recorded everyday in my head, like a Polaroid snapshot. I am learning and unlearning so many things and it’s definitely a phase of progress for me.  Also, this is a big step ahead for Indian cinema as well and I can proudly say that the gap is bridged,” stated an enthusiastic Ali Fazal.

Other cast members in the film include Adeel Akhtar (The Night Manager), Simon Callow (Working Title’s Four Weddings and a Funeral), BAFTA Award winner Michael Gambon, Emmy Award winner Eddie Izzard, Ruth McCabe (Mr. Frears’ Philomena), Tim Pigott-Smith (The Jewel in the Crown), Julian Wadham (The Iron Lady), Olivia Williams (Focus and Working Title’s Anna Karenina), and Fenella Woolgar (Focus’ Scoop).

The film, produced by Focus Features in association with BBC Films, is based on Shrabani Basu’s book Victoria & Abdul: The True Story of the Queen’s Closet Confidant and is being directed by Academy Award nominee Stephen Frears (The Queen). Already in its production phase, the film will be shot at locations such as Scotland, India, and England and is all set for a release in September, 2017.