Actor Elnaaz Norouzi shot to fame when she played the role of an aspiring actor in the web show Sacred Games. With so much recognition pouring in for the series, it must have changed things around for her. But, such is not the case.

“Of course, people remember me from that show. But as much as they think that Sacred Games paved the way for me and opened all the doors, it didn’t. I still feel there was a lot of struggle. It’s not like there is no struggle right now,” she tells us.

The 29-year-old admits it was a “great thing to start with”, but people were still not sure about casting her. “Was that my voice, did I dub, can I speak Hindi, can I act… sometimes people were like, ‘It was one good show she was a part of, doesn’t mean she is good herself’. There are perceptions. I don’t know if that’s what they were saying, that’s what I think. Obviously, it didn’t rain films and series after that. Yes, it opened doors, I was able to meet a lot of people who then said ‘okay we didn’t think she can act, she can really speak in Hindi’,” recalls Norouzi, who went on to star in web shows such as Chutzpah and Abhay.

Now, the struggle has begun to get better, in her words. Has the perception ‘she is from outside India and won’t be able to speak in Hindi’ prove to be a big barrier for her?

The actor, set to be seen next in the second season of the International Emmy-winning show Tehran, says, “I guess in the beginning, yes. Right now, it has changed a lot. I have auditioned for everything I did. I get a lot of feedback from people telling me ‘you speak better than Indians sometimes’! That’s great to know.”

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