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‘I was not prepared,’ says ‘Squid Game’ actor on show’s popularity

Anupam Tripathi became famous after Netflix’s survival drama 'Squid Game'. Source: Indian Express.

SEOUL: Indian-origin South Korea-based actor Anupam Tripathi, who has become famous after Netflix’s survival drama ‘Squid Game’, has said that he was taken aback by the immense popularity of the show.

Tripathi plays Ali on the Netflix series by Hwang Dong-hyuk which has become a global phenomenon. The show is about a competition that lures in common people who are in debt and promises them loads of money upon winning. But the consequences of losing are deadly — literally. Anyone who does not progress to the next round ends up dead.

While speaking to an entertainment magazine, the actor, who grew up in New Delhi, said, “We felt that it will be received well, but when it became a phenomenon and sensation, it was not expected – I was not prepared.”

Anupam further added that his popularity skyrocketed after the show premiered. “I still remember, September 17, 2021, 4 PM, my life was OK, but after 5 PM, it became huge, humongous — suddenly everyone was messaging me and it was ‘Ali,’ ‘Ali’,” he said.


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Anupam’s character Ali is a poor immigrant from Pakistan who enters the contest to provide for his family after his employer refuses him payment for his services.

The actor also revealed how he prepared for the role. He said that when he was cast he did not have the correct body shape and had to put on weight as Ali is known in the show for his strength. “I gained 5 or 6 kilograms and at least looked like somebody who has some power,” he revealed.

Anupam’s “ultimate dream” is to perform in India, “I’ve done theatre only in India, but I want to see and explore how I will do in my own language. I would love to express myself there. That is my ultimate dream – to perform in front of my own home and own audience.”