Raji James is set to play Ali Shahzad, the father of Misbah (Harvey Virdi)’s secret son, Shaq (Omar Malik).
Ali is the new arrival to Dee Valley Hospital, instantly ingratiating himself with doctors and patients alike. He carries himself with an air of professionalism, but he’s also full of charisma, charm and a wicked sense of humour.
“I’m delighted to be joining the cast of Hollyoaks, particularly as I’m part of a very topical and potentially explosive storyline. Ali is a very complex character and I’m thoroughly enjoying the opportunity to explore his darker side.” -Raji James
The character may seem all charm and warm bedside manor but as we’ve all come accustomed to with Hollyoaks, Ali’s ability to win over anyone he meets conceals a darker side to him – he’s capable of manipulating people any which way if it serves him…
More secrets are yet to be revealed as Ali settles into the same village as his estranged son, Shaq Qureshi, but is Shaq set to discover who his real father is… Ali’s shock arrival sends old acquaintance Misbah into a panic, as she freezes upon hearing a ghost from her past…. Raji will first appear on Hollyoaks as Ali on Thursday 2nd September on E4, and again on Friday 3rd September on Channel 4.
“Due to the COVID rules in place, I’ve only been able to meet a few of the other cast members so far, they, along with the incredible crew and office staff, have all been very welcoming and supportive, making it easy to fit in. Having hit the ground running, we’ve already filmed a few hugely emotional scenes. It’s been an absolute pleasure to work alongside and learn from such fantastic actors as Harvey, Omar, Sarah Jayne, Lysette and Nadine.” -Raji James
Prior to playing Doctor Ali Shahzad in Hollyoaks, Raji had leading roles in two other long-running TV series: DS Vik Singh in The Bill and Ash Ferreira in EastEnders.
In Doctor Who, Raji played scientist Dr Rajesh Singh. He was a series lead, Neil, in the ITV sit-com Blind Men, and starred as Dr Joe Mangeshkar in the Australian network comedy series Kick. On film, Raji played Abdul Khan in East is East. His theatre roles include Frank in the world premiere of Iain Banks’ The Wasp Factory.