Kumail Nanjiani, Tracee Ellis Ross to announce Oscar nominations

Kumail Nanjiani and Tracee Ellis Ross have been tapped to announce the 2019 Academy Award nominations, on Jan. 22, live at 8:20 a.m. EST. Nanjiani, who starred in and co-wrote "The Big Sick" with his wife Emily V. Gordon, was nominated for an Oscar last year, along with Gordon, for Best Original Screenplay.

Ross, who has previously hosted the American Music Awards two years in a row, sent a light-hearted message to her co-host Nanjiani. "Oh this is going to be exciting! @KumailN text me when u wake up so we can coordinate our looks. I’m thinking pj’s & glasses... my dressy ones! U? #OscarNoms," she tweeted Jan. 17.

Meanwhile, Nanjiani is teaming up with “Insecure" star Issa Rae for the romantic comedy “The Lovebirds.” According to The Hollywood Reporter, Michael Showalter, who directed Nanjiani in the “The Big Sick,” is reteaming with the comedian for the movie, which is being made by Paramount and MRC. It is written by Aaron Abrams and Brendan Gall as well as Martin Gero.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, “the script centers on a couple (Nanjiani and Rae) on the brink of a breakup”, and “subsequently become embroiled in a bizarre murder mystery, and as they get close to clearing their names and solving the case, they need to figure out how they, and their relationship, can survive the night.”

Nanjiani will also be been seen opposite Dave Bautista in Fox’s action-comedy “Stuber,” which is set to open July 12. According to Variety, “Nanjiani will portray a mild-mannered Uber driver who picks up a grizzled cop, played by Bautista, who is hot on the trail of a brutal killer.” The film centers on how the driver is then thrust into a harrowing ordeal where he has to keep his wits, his life, and his five-star rating. The name of the comedy is taken from the driver’s name, Stu.

The film is directed by Michael Dowse; with Tripper Clancy as the script-writer. Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daley are producing the film; Jake Wagner and Nick Thomas are executive producing; and Jeremy Kramer is overseeing for Fox.

Incidentally, Nanjiani portrayed an Uber driver in the “The Big Sick.” A native of Pakistan who moved to the U.S. when he was 18, Nanjiani is best known as Dinesh Chugtai in HBO’s sitcom “Silicon Valley,” which is returning for its fifth season, March 25.

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