How Tajik influencer Abdu Rozik bagged a role in Salman Khan's Bollywood film

The social media star, who lives in Dubai, met the actor at the International Indian Film Academy Awards in Abu Dhabi

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Tajik influencer Abdu Rozik's Bollywood dreams are coming true. The social media star, who has more than 3.4 million followers on Instagram, has been cast in Salman Khan's upcoming film, which is tentatively titled Bhaijaan.

Rozik, who stands a little over 91 centimetres tall, met Khan at the International Indian Film Academy Awards in Abu Dhabi in June and impressed the actor with his impromptu renditions of Bollywood songs. Khan then invited him to Mumbai where he offered the aspiring actor a role in his upcoming film.

"It's a huge dream for me to get this chance," Rozik, 18, tells The National. "I came from singing in the bazaar to now being with all these big Bollywood stars ... I am so overwhelmed."

While details of the film are still vague, Bhaijaan or "elder brother" in Urdu, is set to be an action thriller and will focus on brotherhood. Khan is also lovingly referred to as "bhai", or "brother", by those in Bollywood and his fans.

"I am chhota (small) bhaijaan now," Rozik says, adding he would love to do more Bollywood films.

"I love India and the people," he says.

Rozik suffers from rickets, which affects bone development in children, and used to earn his living performing on the streets.

The entertainer, who lives in Dubai, is currently in Mumbai to work out the details of his role. He says he's also been brushing up on his Hindi and taking language classes.

"I am also releasing my first Hindi song. It's a very beautiful and emotional song and I hope everyone will like it and support me," he says.

Rozik, who says Khan and fellow star Shah Rukh Khan were his childhood heroes, found online fame in 2019 after videos of him singing went viral.

His voice has since gained him fans around the world and turned him into a social media star. His Instagram is now filled with celebrity selfies, featuring everyone from Egyptian footballer Mohamed Salah to British boxer Amir Khan, with whom he also trained in the ring.

Last year, Rozik became the first personality from his country to receive the long-term UAE golden visa.

“I am deeply humbled and honoured to be the youngest and first from Tajikistan to receive the 10-year golden visa in the UAE. This is a historical moment,” Rozik told The National then, speaking through a translator.

“I would like to thank the royal family who supported me, my sponsor IFCM, the Abu Dhabi government and their team who have all worked so hard. I am overwhelmed by this honour and I promise to make both countries, the UAE and Tajikistan, proud.”

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Updated: August 04, 2022, 6:11 AM