As Squid Game continues to rise into success that has yet to be seen by an Asian production, an issue has been belatedly brought into the spotlight regarding Anupam Tripathi, the actor who played Ali.
According to Yeoeuido Tube, a YouTube channel for Money Today Korea, Pakistan had previously criticized the casting choice of the Indian actor for Ali’s character, but it’s only now making headlines. The reasoning behind their disappointment stems from the fact that Anupam Tripathi is an Indian actor who portrayed a Pakistani character.
Anupam Tripathi is an Indian actor who was studying theater at Korea National University of Arts when he was casted to play Abdul Ali in Squid Game. And while the actor showcased his incredible talent in the series, his portrayal of the Pakistani character brought forth a strong response from some of the K-Drama’s Pakistani viewers.
The reason behind the criticisms, however, is not so simple. Yeoeuido Tube broke it down and explained the deeply rooted reason why Anupam Tripathi’s casting decision became problematic. This particular casting choice caused disappointment due to the ongoing conflict between Pakistan and India. The media site explained the two nations’ conflict as being “worse than North Korea and South Korea’s.”
While Pakistan and India were once a united country, the two separated from one another following their independence from Great Britain — with Pakistan claiming Islam as their religion and India claiming Hinduism. And while the conflict arose decades ago, the two nations continue to have territorial conflict over the Kashmir region.
Due to their ongoing tensions, Pakistani viewers of Squid Game were baffled when they found out that Abdul Ali, a Pakistani character who played an important role in the series, was played by an Indian actor. Pakistani Twitter users expressed their discomfort after watching the Netflix series for themselves, with many of them calling out the streaming platform for not doing proper research.
The Pakistani charecter 'Ali' in squid game is played by an indian actor who isn't even muslim😭 pic.twitter.com/zubeatzprD
— Ayesha (@penggggirl) October 7, 2021
Just Finished Netflix series Squid Games season 1,
A good show but It’s so frustrating to see Pakistani characters in big TV series being played by Indian actors. Why can’t these productions cast original Pakistani actors for such roles?.#SquidGames #Netflix
— Wadoodsanjrani (@SanjraniWadood) October 10, 2021
— SheharBano. (@oyeee_banooo) October 8, 2021
And while Anupam Tripathi portrayed Ali in the most perfect and beautiful way possible, we hope that production companies pay closer attention regarding these types of sensitive situations in the future.