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Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon's Relationship Timeline

Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon’s real-life romance inspired their Oscar-nominated film 'The Big Sick'

<p>Rodin Eckenroth/WireImage</p> Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani attend the Warner Bros. premiere of "The Suicide Squad" on August 02, 2021.

Rodin Eckenroth/WireImage

Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani attend the Warner Bros. premiere of "The Suicide Squad" on August 02, 2021.

Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon first connected after she heckled him at a comedy show in 2006.

Shortly after, they began a casual relationship, but despite their chemistry, the Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire star wondered if his family would accept Gordon. At the time, his parents were trying to set him up for an arranged marriage with a Pakistani woman.

Although Nanjiani was uncertain about what to do, Gordon experienced a health scare that prompted the actor to open up to his mom and dad.

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The then-therapist was placed in a medically induced coma, motivating Nanjiani to declare his love for her and reveal their relationship to his parents. Upon Gordon's recovery, the two wed, and a decade later, their love story became the creative inspiration for The Big Sick, an Oscar-nominated film they co-wrote.

Since then, Nanjiani and Gordon have continued working together, producing and co-writing multiple series.

From their first encounter to shared stardom, here’s a complete timeline of Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon’s relationship.

2006: Emily V. Gordon heckles Kumail Nanjiani at a comedy show

<p>Emily V. Gordon Instagram</p> Kumail Nanjiani, Mike Bridenstine and Emily V. Gordon.

Emily V. Gordon Instagram

Kumail Nanjiani, Mike Bridenstine and Emily V. Gordon.

Gordon first caught Nanjiani’s eye from the stage when he was performing a comedy set in a Chicago bar. When she heckled him during a joke, he stopped his set to reply directly to her.

Though the two didn’t meet up that night, several days later, they ran into each other again and exchanged numbers.

After texting and meeting up several times, Nanjiani and Gordon realized they had chemistry — but they still had hangups about making their relationship official.

Gordon wasn’t sure she wanted to jump into a serious relationship after experiencing a divorce, while Nanjiani’s parents were in the process of trying to arrange a marriage for him.

“My American friends would be, like, ‘Dude, just tell your parents you’re not interested,’ ” Nanjiani recounted to The New Yorker in 2017. “But that’s a misunderstanding of the culture. Arranged marriage is marriage. Anything else is unthinkable.”

Despite this incompatibility, the couple continued seeing each other casually.

“I couldn’t imagine a universe where I ended up accepting an arranged marriage, but I also couldn’t imagine telling my parents that,” Nanjiani said. “So I just deflected and delayed.”

He elaborated to PEOPLE that while he cared for Gordon, he wasn’t ready to commit. “We were having such a great time. I wasn’t thinking about the future at all. I really, really liked her but my parents didn’t know about her and there was really no plan," he explained.

May 2007: Kumail Nanjiani cares for Emily V. Gordon while she’s in a coma

<p>Kumail Nanjiani Instagram</p> Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon pose for a picture together.

Kumail Nanjiani Instagram

Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon pose for a picture together.

When Gordon was admitted to the hospital during a routine doctor’s appointment, the staff called Nanjiani, who raced to Gordon’s side.

Within 24 hours, she was put in a medically induced coma for eight days and later diagnosed with Still’s disease, a rare form of inflammatory arthritis.

“I was the first person at the hospital and they made me sign the paperwork,” The Eternals star told PEOPLE. “I realized it was much more serious when the doctor said we’re going put her in a coma. That was my first clue that this wasn’t just a flu.”

Nanjiani then found himself navigating the hospital environment and Gordon’s care. It was then that the actor decided to tell his parents about his relationship.

“They were very concerned about Emily’s health,” Nanjiani told USA Today in 2017. “When she got better, they were like, ‘Why did you do this to us?!’ ”

July 2007: Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon get married

<p>Kumail Nanjiani Instagram</p> Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon on their wedding day in 2007.

Kumail Nanjiani Instagram

Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon on their wedding day in 2007.

Months after Gordon recovered from her coma, she married Nanjiani in a private ceremony at Chicago's City Hall. They followed their simple nuptials with a Pakistani-style wedding.

2010: Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon move to Los Angeles

After marrying, Nanjiani and Gordon first moved to New York City before relocating to Los Angeles in 2010, where Nanjiani eventually booked a starring role in Silicon Valley.

The two still live in the southwestern city with their cat named Bagel.

2015: Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon write The Big Sick about their relationship

<p>Sarah Shatz/Apatow/Kobal/Shutterstock</p> Kumail Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan in 'The Big Sick'.

Sarah Shatz/Apatow/Kobal/Shutterstock

Kumail Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan in 'The Big Sick'.

The couple used their own love story to write The Big Sick, a romantic comedy produced by Judd Apatow and starring Nanjiani, Ray Romano, Zoe Kazan and Holly Hunter.

The film, which debuted in 2017, portrays the sometimes fraught relationship between Nanjiani’s character and both his and Gordon's fictional parents.

In real life, Nanjiani said he maintains a strong relationship with his mom and dad, who were incredibly supportive of his movie’s journey from real-life story to big-screen success.

“They’re just as surprised as we are. They just texted us ‘good luck tonight’ they’re like following it very, very closely," Nanjiani said at the SAG Awards in 2018. "They’ll send me interviews we’ve done. Like, ‘We were there. We remember this.’ ”

As press for the film geared up, Gordon celebrated appearing in PEOPLE’s print edition with her husband by posting their photo from the magazine on Instagram.

July 13, 2017: Kumail Nanjiani reveals the moment he knew he would marry Emily V. Gordon

<p>Frazer Harrison/Getty</p> Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani attend the 75th Directors Guild of America Awards on February 18, 2023 in Beverly Hills, California.

Frazer Harrison/Getty

Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani attend the 75th Directors Guild of America Awards on February 18, 2023 in Beverly Hills, California.

Nanjiani has said that he knew he needed to marry Gordon when she was in a coma.

“It was honestly right when she went under,” he told PEOPLE. “I remember thinking, ‘Oh I love this woman, and I want to spend the rest of my life with her. If she comes out of this I’m going to marry her.’ ”

November 15, 2017: Emily V. Gordon supports Kumail Nanjiani as he is dubbed the "sexiest husband"

Gordon wasn’t surprised when Nanjiani was dubbed "sexiest husband" in PEOPLE's 2017 Sexiest Man Alive issue — she quipped on Instagram she had known it all along.

The pair have often been open about the magnetic chemistry they share.

“Once, before she came over to watch a movie, I threw a bunch of dirty laundry on my bed, to ensure that nothing would happen. It didn’t work,” Nanjiani told The New Yorker.

January 3, 2018: Emily V. Gordon thanks Kumail Nanjiani for supporting her amid ongoing health challenges

<p>Justin Lloyd/Newspix/Getty</p> Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani pose during a photo shoot in Sydney, New South Wales on July 26, 2017.

Justin Lloyd/Newspix/Getty

Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani pose during a photo shoot in Sydney, New South Wales on July 26, 2017.

Nanjiani has always shown his support for Gordon as she lives with Still’s disease — and she thanked him publically in a 2018 Instagram post about the challenges of her new medication.

“Big ups to my husband, who is always great when I’m anxious about this stuff,” Gordon wrote.

In addition to medication, she controls the rare type of arthritis by building scheduled rest days into her routine.

Gordon described the symptoms to PEOPLE: "It’s fevers — it’s a very intense, kind of just awful, feeling. And then if I don’t stop everything I’m doing then I can get much more sick. So, then, if it’s more, I just have to kind of stop and let it leave.”

January 22, 2018: Kumail Nanjiani gushes about "real connection" with Emily V. Gordon

<p>Todd Williamson/Getty</p> Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon speak onstage at Amazon Studios CinemaCon Presentation during CinemaCon on March 30, 2017.

Todd Williamson/Getty

Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon speak onstage at Amazon Studios CinemaCon Presentation during CinemaCon on March 30, 2017.

Nanjiani admitted that Gordon wasn’t the type of person he had always thought he would end up with, but he said their connection was better than anything he could have dreamed.

“When I was younger, I had this list of ‘the perfect women will have these qualities,’ and then you grow up and you realize that stuff doesn’t matter,” Nanjiani told MAKERS. “What matters is the real connection.”

“All that stuff that was on shallow teenage Kumail’s list,” he said. “With Emily, I got the real connection.”

January 23, 2018: Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon’s The Big Sick is nominated for an Oscar

<p>Neilson Barnard/Getty </p> Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon attend the 90th Annual Academy Awards on March 4, 2018 in Hollywood, California.

Neilson Barnard/Getty

Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon attend the 90th Annual Academy Awards on March 4, 2018 in Hollywood, California.

Nanjiani and Gordon reached a major career milestone together when their film The Big Sick was nominated for Best Original Screenplay at the 2018 Academy Awards.

Although it ultimately lost to Jordan Peele’s Get Out, the couple were flattered to be among the nominees.

“We are the underdogs,” Nanjiani told PEOPLE on the Oscar's red carpet. “We are just happy to be here. You know people say, ‘It’s an honor just to be nominated.’ It truly feels like that.”

December 16, 2019: Emily V. Gordon celebrates Kumail Nanjiani’s buff body

After Nanjiani underwent a major body transformation for his role in Marvel’s The Eternals, Gordon revealed she was enjoying the side effects of his commitment to working out.

“He’s super buff but he’s also still super this guy: a horrifically focused gamer and the best cat lap,” she wrote on Instagram.

Alongside his viral fitness photos, posted on Instagram, Nanjiani expressed his appreciation to the trainers and nutritionists who worked with him during the project.

The actor also gave a nod to his wife, writing, "The biggest thanks goes to @emilyvgordon for putting up with me complaining and talking about only working out and dieting for the last year. I promise I’ll be interesting again some day."

February 14, 2020: Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon celebrate Valentine’s Day in matching cat pajamas

<p>Emily V. Gordon Instagram</p> Kumail Nanjiani and his wife, Emily V. Gordon, in cat pjs.

Emily V. Gordon Instagram

Kumail Nanjiani and his wife, Emily V. Gordon, in cat pjs.

Nanjiani and Gordon showed their love on Valentine’s Day with matching cat pajamas.

The two have talked about enjoying spending time with each other at home.

“It’s just like having like a great slumber party all the time,” Nanjiani told PEOPLE. “It really is. We just love hanging out.”

“Sometimes it will be pancakes and sometimes it will be scripts,” Gordon added.

March 19, 2020: Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon launch a podcast together

Nanjiani and Gordon stayed productive while quarantining during the COVID-19 pandemic by starting a podcast called Staying in with Emily and Kumail.

Episodes dropped weekly and covered topics related to the highs and lows of staying indoors during the global health crisis. Nanjiani told PEOPLE that the podcast brought them closer together.

"Even though we're married and we have a really good relationship, we don't get like, 'All right, now for an hour and a half let's really talk about how we're feeling,' " he said. "It's so easy to kind of not do that."

The actor continued, "So that's been really good for our relationship and I'm really finding out stuff about her that I didn't know before, [like] what her coping strategies are. I think I'm better now at knowing."

April 30, 2020: Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon open up about mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic

<p>Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic</p> Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani attend the premiere of "Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery" on November 14, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.

Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani attend the premiere of "Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery" on November 14, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.

Nanjiani got candid on their podcast about the feelings of numbness that overtook him during the COVID-19 pandemic — and how Gordon’s touch provided a grounding presence for him.

“I haven’t felt much of anything ... when you touch me is the only time I feel anything,” he said. Gordon replied, “That is romantic and sad at the same time."

“When you touch me, the temperature of your hand or something, it feels almost electric," Nanjiani added. "I feel maybe I’ve put a lot of pressure on the schedule to get me through or to make me feel a certain way ... now I feel maybe some of those things are feeling the weight of expectations.”

July 14, 2020: Emily V. Gordon praises Kumail Nanjiani on Instagram

<p>Kumail Nanjiani Instagram</p> Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon celebrating the holidays together in 2020.

Kumail Nanjiani Instagram

Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon celebrating the holidays together in 2020.

Gordon celebrated her 13th wedding anniversary with Nanjiani by posting a tribute to him on Instagram.

“Every day I’m a little bit more in love and a bit more in awe. I adore this thing we’ve built,” she wrote alongside a photo of their special day.

October 19, 2021: Emily V. Gordon says she’s "proud" to be married to "superhero" Kumail Nanjiani

<p>Kumail Nanjiani Instagram</p> Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon on their wedding day in 2007.

Kumail Nanjiani Instagram

Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon on their wedding day in 2007.

Gordon celebrated Nanjiani on Instagram after the premiere of The Eternals, saying, “I can’t tell you how proud I am to be married to a superhero.”

In the photos, she proudly showed off an action figure based on Nanjiani’s character Kingo.

November 17, 2022: Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon open up about their working relationship

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Nanjiani and Gordon shared about their joint writing and producing work, which includes projects like Little America and Welcome to Chippendales.

“If we’re hanging out, and one of us gets an idea about work, we have to ask permission to bring it up," he said. "Sometimes the other person says, ‘No!’ ”

Gordon added, "It’s interesting to be added on as a producer. You’re like, “How can I be useful?” I’m not here to be weird! I’m not just there to be Kumail’s person."

June 23, 2023: Emily V. Gordon congratulates Kumail Nanjiani's acting

<p>JC Olivera/Getty</p> Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani attend the opening night performance of "KATE" on January 21, 2024 in Pasadena, California.

JC Olivera/Getty

Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani attend the opening night performance of "KATE" on January 21, 2024 in Pasadena, California.

Ahead of the 2023 Emmys, Gordon shouted out her husband's performance in their series Welcome to Chippendales.

"If you’re an Emmy voter, get in there and consider @kumailn for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie for @wtchippendales," she wrote on Instagram. "It’s a carefully controlled, intense performance that still manages to find lightness until the character is too far gone. I’m so proud of him."

January 31, 2024: Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon go on a date with John Legend and Chrissy Teigen

For an episode of Chrissy & Dave Dine Out, Nanjiani and Gordon joined David and Grace Chang and John Legend and Chrissy Teigen for a meal at La Casita Mexicana.

Gordon posted about the night out on her Instagram and recommended the restaurant to her followers.

"Had the delight of 1) eating at @casitamex 2) having a triple date with David & Grace, John & Chrissy, and Kumail, and 3) being on #chrissyanddavedineout!" she wrote. "And amazingly, I got to accomplish all these things at once."

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