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Interview: Riz Ahmed Chats About ‘Sound of Metal’ and How He Chooses His Roles

Riz Ahmed in "Sound of Metal" Courtesy of Amazon Studios

It’s impossible not to be blown away by Riz Ahmed. Even before Sound of Metal, which may well earn him an Academy Award nomination, he’s been quietly one of the best in the business. Nightcrawler, The Night Of, and more, have seen Ahmed rise to an exciting level in short order. Sound of Metal is just a cherry on top, rightly earning him precursor awards and Oscar buzz. We always knew it was only a matter of time for him, so to see his time potentially being now, it’s impossible not to root for him. As he campaigns, even though the work is doing most of the heavy lifting, he was willing to come speak to Awards Radar, which was quite the honor. Today, we’re thrilled to present my chat with him to you.

When I reviewed the film (my take can be found here), Ahmed’s performance stood tall. Here’s a bit from said review:

Riz Ahmed is amazing here, doing easily the finest work of his career so far. He’s intense and stubborn, just like you’d expect a heavy metal drummer to be. At the same time, he slowly lets you in, giving Ruben extra layers. Plus, the way he depicts having lost his hearing is not just moving, it feels accurate to the situation. 

Below, you can hear my interview with Ahmed. A lot of what we discuss relates to his process, both before and after he signs on to a project. Sound of Metal gets the vast majority of our attention, but that’s not all. He even brings up work like Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and Venom. It’s all a reminder of how much he’s accomplished in a really short period of time. Moreover, it’s a sure sign of how much is still to come for an A-list star in the making like him. With the talent he has, the sky is quite literally the limit.

Here now is my conversation with Sound of Metal star Riz Ahmed. Enjoy:

Ahmed can be seen in Sound of Metal, available to watch right now on Prime Video!

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Written by Joey Magidson

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