"Each thing takes time. My family doesn't belong to the film industry, so it has taken me time to prove myself and get recognition. It has taken me a little longer to get recognition. Many take five to six years, but in my case it has taken 10-12 years. But I believe you are never late," Nawazuddin told IANS.
"Earlier, my work was noticed by only by few people. And as I said, it takes time to get good roles. Now I have nine films lined up to release. Earlier, I used to get work once in a year or two and at times I hardly had any scenes in films. Now, I believe, each kind of cinema has got a space at the box office," he added.
A graduate of National School of Drama (NSD), he recently represented Ashim Ahluwalia's "Miss Lovely" and Anurag Kashyap's two-part "Gangs of Wasseypur" at Cannes and is happy that they were appreciated.
"I am thankful to god that we have some young directors whose choice of filmmaking and subjects are different from others. Few directors are still rooted with our culture and make films with their experience. Few directors make films without the hangover of stardom."
Nawazuddin claims finally his hard work has been paid.
"I come from a very small town and reaching here was not a cakewalk. I used to lock up myself in a room for 18 to 20 hours and explore myself by practicing various acting techniques. My hard work has finally paid off. I don't think I am very talented, it is all because of my hard work," he said.
Nawazuddin, who has been a part of other acclaimed films like "Black Friday" and "Paan Singh Tomar", says he is happy that "his films are not restricted to film festivals."
"They have done well at the box office as well - be it 'Dev D' or 'Kahaani'. I am hundred and one percent sure even 'Gangs of Wasseypur' will do a good business. So, I don't come with a tag of only film festivals," he added.
His is proud of "Dekh Indian Circus", directed by National Award winning director Mangesh Hadawale. The film was screened as the closing film at the 12th annual New York Indian Film Festival (NYIFF) and Nawazuddin won the best actor award for his performance in the film at the fest.
The won the best film trophy at the Busan International Film Festival.
"My role in 'Great Indian Circus' is about a dumb guy. It is completely opposite to the role that I have played so far. You will not even recognise me. When you will see the film, you will know how diverse roles I have played. I am proud to be part of the film," he said.
Nawazuddin's kitty is full with movies like "Chittagong", "Talaash", "Patang", "Lunch Box" among others.