Nawazuddin Siddiqui was born in Budhana in Muzaffarpur district of Western UP on May 19, 1974. He grew up with seven brothers and two sisters in his native village. He is a science graduate from Gurukul Kangri University Haridwar and after completion of his graduation, he worked as a chemist in a factory for a short while. He did not like the job and hence leaving it proceeded to Delhi to find some other job which might interest him. As he could not find a suitable job in Delhi, he even worked as a watchman for his survival. Within a short while, he watched theatres and felt interested in it. He joined a theatre group and started studying the art of acting. He graduated in acting from National School of Drama in 1996 and relocated to Mumbai to pursue his career in acting.
On arrival in Mumbai, sustenance and survival became a serious issue for him and he started doing minor and few minute roles in the television which was simply not enough either for his survival or to showcase his acting talent. At one point of time having been fed up with minor roles in TV, he decided to try his luck in Bollywood film industry where though the roles were minor and nondescript, the money paid was higher than that of TV serials.
After a very long story of struggle, he got the lead role in Pipli Live, Kahani, gangs of Wasseypur and gangs of Wasseypur-2 which turned the tables in his favour. He won a National special jury award for his performance in Pipli Live.