It's been a whirlwind year for Hertfordshire actor Andrew Malik, who has starred in his first major movie at the age of 26.

The Harpenden-born talent - who now lives with his partner in Hitchin - works at Brad & Dills coffee shop when he's not acting.

We sat down with Andrew to discuss his background, his career so far and why his latest film is so important.

Andrew began: "I grew up in Harpenden, I went to SJL (Sir John Lawes School), I went to The Grove School as well - for primary school.

The Comet: Andrew Malik plays Eman in The Persian Version.Andrew Malik plays Eman in The Persian Version. (Image: Andrew Malik)

"I've always wanted be an actor, since the age of six. I don't know whether that's admirable or stupid... to decide what you're going to do when you're six!

"I didn't go to any acting schools nearby, I wanted to go to drama school but my parents were a little bit wary of that, which I think is understandable.

"So, during Sixth Form I found training to fit in alongside school. It was actually started by my uncle, who is also an actor.

"After that, I was able to find an agent and start working. It felt very much like, without sounding too arrogant, I was going to find a way."

Speaking of his most recent and most high-profile role so far, as Eman in Sony Pictures' The Persian Version, the 26-year-old continued: "It was really exciting!

The Comet: Andrew Malik and co-stars prior to the release of The Persian Version.Andrew Malik and co-stars prior to the release of The Persian Version. (Image: Andrew Malik)

"It's funny, you get yourself into silly mindsets. It was filming in Turkey and I spent about four or five weeks there.

"I remember thinking 'oh my god, what if I forget how to act when I get there? What if acting is different in Turkey?'

"But, as soon as you arrive on set, I'd done it so many times before, albeit on a smaller scale.

"It was just second-nature almost."

Along with it being Andrew's 'big break' into acting, the movie also strikes a personal note with the actor.

The Comet: Andrew Malik in Sony Pictures' The Persian Version.Andrew Malik in Sony Pictures' The Persian Version. (Image: Andrew Malik)

"My dad's side is Middle Eastern, we're Persian-Assyrian. Growing-up, Afghanistan was always in the news.

"There was war and stuff, and people just associated the Middle East with terrorism.

"So, you'd sort of feel ashamed, at just being Middle Eastern.

"It was a funny script, obviously, and it looked like a really fun film, but it was a film about Middle Easterners just being normal.


"I think it's quite an important film. It was the sort of film that I wish I'd had when I was younger.

"There just wasn't a lot about that out there. 

"It shows other people's cultures. It's a comedy but it flicks back and forth between time periods and you see a lot of the mother growing up, and a lot of Leila the main character growing up.

"It is a funny film but has a lot of heart to it. There is a lot of really quite tear-jerking bits in there. I cried when I first watched it."