PAKISTAN: ‘ I want to work in my own country because my country needs us now: Ayesha Omar ‘


#AceMediaNews- Sept.08: This year’s crop of films have played their part in putting Pakistani cinema on the map. As our films prepare to hit the festival circuit and some gear for international release, their directors and actors travel and tell the world what Pakistani cinema is all about. Ayesha Omar is one such actor.

After the Hollywood premiere in Los Angeles of her debut film Karachi Se Lahore, she spoke to Gulf Times about her views on where Pakistani stands.

Talking about the difference between Pakistani cinema and Bollywood, she said that what Pakistani cinema lacks in investment, it more than makes up in content.

“Our production budgets are nothing compared to Bollywood,” Ayesha said, “People are investing their own money and trying to make movies. We are seeking help from a lot of brands, but if there is anything we can compete at, it is content.”

“Our content is very strong,” she continued, “I feel we know how to play with the script, and have some amazing script writers. That’s why our drama is getting rave reviews across the border, in India. Our characters are very deep as well and we keep them real — something people can relate to.”

Ayesha Omar with the rest of the Karachi Se Lahore team at the film's Hollywood premiere in LA — Publicity photo
Ayesha Omar with the rest of the Karachi Se Lahore team at the film’s Hollywood premiere in LA — Publicity photo

While Pakistani content is being greatly appreciated in India, political tensions prevent it from being shared readily with our neighbours.

“Pakistani movies are being banned in India,” Ayesha said, “They want their own industry to prosper, of course, but we’re the same people with the same culture and interests. I think people are scared right now because of the political situation. Otherwise, people in both the countries love each other.”

Talking about her own love for Bollywood, Ayesha said that she was a big fan of Aamir Khan, Shah Rukh and Naseeruddin Shah, but doesn’t plan on moving into Bollywood just yet.

“Frankly, I’d be very honoured and humbled, but I want to work in Pakistan because my country needs us right now. The Indian industry is very lucrative and it’s easy to go there — rather everyone who’s getting even a whiff is going there. It’s great because it’s a huge industry with a global reach, but I want to stay back for a few years and work here. I might however, do a really good project if it comes my way — only if I don’t have to compromise values and feel there is substance in it.”

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