Adeel Akhtar

Actor Adeel Akhtar first came to attention as a regular of British TV comedy before making memorable appearances in dystopian fantasy "Utopia" (Channel 4, 2013-14) and Peter Pan reimagining "Pan" (2015). Born in London in 1980, Akhtar initially pursued a career in law but after graduating from university with a degree in the subject, switched his attention to acting, going onto study at the National Youth Theatre and New York's Actors Studio Drama School. His first on-screen appearance came in 2006 with a minor role in an episode of "Law and Order: Criminal Intent" (NBC, 2001-2011) and was followed by small parts in short-lived legal drama "Conviction" (NBC, 2006) and Don Cheadle spy thriller "Traitor" (2008). Akhtar landed his first lead role when he was cast as Mani, a homeless man who develops an unlikely bond with the grieving widow who offers him shelter, in slow-burning drama "Stranger Things" (2010). But he came to wider attention later that year when he played naive Muslim extremist Faisal in Chris Morris' controversial jihad satire, "Four Lions" (2010). Akhtar continued to showcase his comic skills as sidekick Gupta in surreal chat show "Angelos Epithemiou's Moving On" (Channel 4, 2010), one of several minions in Sacha Baron Cohen vehicle "The Dictator" (2012) and over-enthusiastic fraud investigator George in sitcom "The Job Lot" (ITV, 2013-). Akhtar then joined the cast of supermarket-based comedy "Trollied" (Sky 1, 2011-) as reclusive fishmonger Ray and appeared as Vinod in 'food, feud and family' feature film "Jadoo" (2013) before stealing the show in mind-bending cult hit "Utopia" (Channel 4, 2013-14) as the one-eyed conspiracy theorist Wilson. Returning to more dramatic fare, Akhtar then guested in an episode of "The Tunnel" (Sky Atlantic, 2013-), the UK adaptation of the Scandinavian crime noir, appeared as one of many government officials practicing their response to an immediate nuclear threat in the thought-provoking "War Book" (2014), and played detective Ira King in the Abi Morgan-scripted "River" (BBC1, 2015-). Following roles in heist comedy "Convenience" (2015) and "The Show" (2015), a behind-the-curtains drama about a young TV actress' stage debut, Akhtar landed the part of Captain Hook's right hand man Mr. Smee in Joe Wright's fantasy adventure "Pan" (2015).