Full Name: Kunal Nayyar
Birthdate: April 30, 1981
Hometown: Hounslow, London, UK
Spouse: Neha Kapoor
Kunal Nayyar is a British-Indian actor popularly known for his role for Rajesh Koothreppali in the hit CBS sitcom “The Big Bang Theory”. He was born on April 30, 1981, in Hounslow, London, UK. Later, his family moved to New Delhi, India when he was 4 and was raised there in a Punjabi family. His father is Rakesh Nayyar and his mother is Heita Nayya.
During childhood, Kunal attended the St. Columba’s School which is an elite boys’ school situated in New Delhi, India. During school, Kunal loved played badminton for the school team. In an interview, Kunal said “In school, I was busy playing badminton and chasing girls. I hated studying and only wanted to play sports.” Later, in 1999, Kunal moved to the United States to furthermore study. There he enrolled in the University of Portland where he studied Science in Finance. During his college, he started gaining interest in acting and started taking parts in the school plays.
Later, Kunal participated in the American College Theatre Festival after which he became sure that he wanted to become a full-time actor. So, he enrolled himself in the Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where he studied acting for Master of Fine Arts.
Kunal Nayyar Family
Kunal is current married to the Indian model Neha Kapoor. The two first met in 2008 in New Delhi, India. In an interview, when asked about how the two met, Kunal said “I thought, ‘Wow, she’s hot.’ I wanted to hook up with her, to be honest. And then, she was so tall… I said, ‘Hey, sit down, I’ll buy you a drink.’ And that was it.” According to him, it was love at first sight for him and said “I was overcome by this feeling of calmness. I just felt so sure and so comfortable. Not even poetry could explain how I felt about this woman.” When the same question was asked to Neha, she said “Kunal was visiting India, and my friend called me, saying, “Oh, this really great guy is visiting from America.” There was a party at a bar, and I saw Kunal dressed all LA, the star; the glasses…”
Soon after meeting, the two started talking to each other frequently. Kunal shared that the two first talked about their childhood memories in New Delhi. After that, Kunal stayed there for 9 more days and spend most of the time with her. Later when he returned back, he requested Neha to visit LA as well and the two had a great time together. On December 22, 2011, the two finally tied the knot in New Delhi in a traditional Indian style wedding. The ceremonies and celebration were carried out for six days. During the ceremonies, more than 1000 guests were invited. When asked about their wedding, Kunal said “My favorite moment was seeing Neha for the first time that day. It still gives me the shivers to think of how beautiful she looked. There was something more than physical beauty at play when she was walking. It was spiritual, she was a vision. I will never forget that until the day I die.”
Kunal Nayyar Career
Kunal started his career as an actor while he was studying in college. In 2004, he appeared in the movie “S.C.I.E.N.C.E” by Jordan Noce as a Pizza Man. After graduating from college, Kunal appeared in several TV ads and performed on stage in India, England, and America. Later, he starred in the play “Huck Holden” by Rajiv Joseph. In the play, he played the role of Navin who is an Indian exchange student excited to experience culture in America before returning home. Later, he earned the Garland Award for Best Male Lead in a Play on the West Coast for the role.
Later, Kunal starred in the play “Love’s Labour’s Lost” in both English production by Royal Shakespeare Company and American production by Shakespeare Theatre Company. Later, he collaborated with Arun Das and opened the play “Cotton Candy” in New Delhi, India. In 2007, Kunal made his Television debut with the role of Youssef Zidan, an Iraqi terrorist, in one of the episodes of the fourth season of “NCIS”. Later, he was cast as astrophysicist Rajesh Koothrappali in the CBS sitcom “The Big Bang Theory”. Initially, the character Rajesh was not part of the show, however, when the audience loved the characters Leonard Hofstadter and Sheldon Cooper then the producer decided to add more such funny characters. The show was a huge success and the eleventh season was premiered on September 25, 2017.
Also in 2011, Kunal co-hosted the “Tribute to the Nerds” show at the “Just For Laugh” festival. In 2012, he made his debut as a voice actor with the character Gupta in the animation movie “Ice Age: Continental Drift” by Steve Martino and Mike Thurmeier. Later, he became the voice of Vijay in the Nickelodeon cartoon “Sanjay and Craig”. The show aired from 2013 to 2016. In 2014, he appeared in the movies “The Scribbler” as Karim and “Dr. Cabbie” as Tony. The following year, he appeared in the off-Broadway production “The Spoils” by Jess Eisenberg where he plays the role of Kalyan who is a Nepalese student and the roommate of the protagonist. Later, he did the voice-over of the Guy Diamond in the animated movie “Trolls”. Recently, he did the voice-over of the character Aziz in the animated movie “Car 3”.
Kunal Nayyar Salary and Net Worth
Initially, Kunal Nayyar’s salary for an episode of the series “The Big Bang Theory” was 20,000 dollars. Later, the salary was raised to 100,000 dollars per episode. However, later it was reported that the salary has increased to 1 million dollars. Kunal has an estimated net worth of $45 million. TV Guide reports that between June 1, 2015, and June 1, 2016, Nayyar made $22 million. He owns BMW i8, Audi A8 and Range Rover