For those of us in the West, the mere mention of Iran arouses fear and suspicion. The Middle Eastern country has become so notorious that we sometimes forget it’s populated by real people. Some of them even know how to act.
Nazli K. Lou was born in Tehran, Iran but she’s now making a name for herself in Hollywood. Since November of 2011, Lou has hosted a very popular Persian-based show on GEM TV. Due to being fluent in Farsi she was able to land a voiceover role in the movie Argo (directed by Ben Affleck).
Lou is also appearing in a short film written and directed by Tara Atashgah called “Atefehs.” The film, about a 16-year-old Iranian girl hanged for being unchaste, has been submitted to dozens of film festivals including Cannes, South By Southwest, and Tribeca.
Lou’s childhood was split between Iran and Austria. While she was interested in dance and acting, her early years were dominated by academics. Still, she was able to convince her parents to buy her private dance lessons.
When Lou was 17 she moved to England to continue her education. She attended MacMillan College where she studied German and business. Lou was accepted into several universities but she decided to attend the nearby University of Teesside. Eventually, she graduated from Teesside with a degree in the business.
After graduation, Lou worked fulltime as a sales and customer service agent. Despite the professional success, Lou was still drawn to acting. To satiate her passion, she joined a local theatre group where she was eventually cast as “Annelle” in the classic play Steel Magnolias. Her experience in Magnolias was enough to make Lou realize that acting, not academics, is her true calling.
Lou enrolled in local acting schools but quickly realized that she needed to go to America. It was a huge chance but she auditioned for the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in Los Angeles in October of 2009. Lou got one of the 170 spots that were vied for by more than 8,000 applicants. Not only did Lou defy long odds but she did so while going through a divorce and dealing with her mother’s passing.
Since coming to the United States, Lou has starred in stage productions of “The Odd Couple,” Jump the Train at Riverpoint” and “Bedroom Farce.” She has also appeared in the feature films “Parts of Disease” and “The Wedding.” Lou became SAG eligible in January of 2012.