Naren Weiss

Naren Weiss (born March 15, 1991) is an actor, playwright, and former model. He played Osama bin Laden in Kamal Haasan's film on terrorism Vishwaroopam, Dekker in the ABC series Deception, and is known for his work in theatre in India and the United States. He has been called "the greatest actor you've never heard of."[1][2][3]

Naren Weiss
Weiss during a photoshoot in New York City in 2016
BornMarch 15, 1991 (1991-03-15) (age 29)
Actor, playwright, model
Years active2010–present
Known for
Height6 ft 3 in (191 cm)

Early lifeEdit

Born in Nassau Bay, 30 minutes outside of Houston, Weiss's family bounced around various places in the U.S. until, at the age of 12, the family migrated to Madras. Whilst finishing his education, Naren found his love for the stage in many school and college productions. Naren Weiss attended Madras Christian College and Brooklyn College. He is of mixed ethnicity and worked as a model during college, appearing in campaigns for Sprite, Bank of India, The Chennai Silks and on magazine covers like India Today.[4] He was discovered by VJ Paloma Rao while performing onstage, leading to his becoming a VJ for Channel UFX. He comes from an athletic background and often talks about acting like a sport.[5][6]


Naren Weiss began his career onstage in Chennai (India), acting and writing in plays for The Little Theatre, the Stray Factory, and The Hindu Metroplus Theater Fest. He found success as a young stage actor and received visibility from the Indian media, being called "enchantingly scraggly and gloriously flamboyant" (The Hindu) and "annoying perfection" (The New Indian Express).[7][8]

He had a small role in Good Night Good Morning, notably played Osama bin Laden in Vishwaroopam, and had an unsuccessful audition run for the title role in Life of Pi. He played a separate character named Pi years later in the Chinese film Love is a Broadway Hit directed by Peter Lee, a long-time friend and associate of Life of Pi director Ang Lee.[9]

He acted in the United States in 2014 in New York City. His performance as an Israeli immigrant in Meron Langsner's Over Here was successful, and he had other roles at the Geffen Playhouse, Kennedy Center, Off-Broadway, and guest roles on American television shows such as Elementary, The Brave, Broad City and others.[10] For his work on The Brave, NBC submitted him for consideration in the Outstanding Guest Actor category for the 2018 Primetime Emmy Awards, although he did not receive a nomination.[11]

His book Deepak and Raj: Two Indian Plays reached #1 on Amazon's playwriting list in 2020.[12]

Personal lifeEdit

Naren Weiss speaks multiple languages, and was a translator on Madam Secretary.


  1. ^ "The Greatest Actor You've Never Heard Of". 8 September 2017. Retrieved 5 March 2018.
  2. ^ "Naren Weiss has Captured a Lot of Hearts". 23 October 2017. Retrieved 5 March 2018.
  3. ^ "IMDb trivia". 1 December 2017. Retrieved 5 March 2018.
  4. ^ "Cooper Company 2". Retrieved 23 November 2016.
  5. ^ "Acting like a Sport". Retrieved 28 January 2017.
  6. ^ "Acting May Be The Greatest Sport of All". Retrieved 28 January 2017.
  7. ^ "Musketeers in the city". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 24 November 2013.
  8. ^ "The Great Indian Blogologues". Retrieved 24 November 2013.
  9. ^ "Shuttling between worlds". 20 June 2017. Retrieved 22 June 2017.
  10. ^ Soloski, Alexis (30 July 2017). "Tina Howe's Singing Beach". The New York Times. Retrieved 5 March 2018.
  11. ^ "South Asian Talent Eligible for the 2018 Emmy Nominations". 13 June 2018. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
  12. ^ "Amazon Hot New Releases". 27 June 2020. Retrieved 27 June 2020.