Plum Roles And Meaty Projects Are Given To People With Good Contacts, Says Nausheen Shah

Nausheen Shah is an exuberant performer who has proved her mettle with superlative performances in successful projects like, Shaista Shaista, Dugdugi, Mannchalay, Rehaai, Pani Jaisa Piyar, Khud Parast, and Deewar-e-Shab. Not just that, she channels her inner diva with utmost grace when it comes to making a statement on the red carpet or ramp.

Plum Roles And Meaty Projects Are Given To People With Good Contacts, Says Nausheen Shah
Nausheen Shah

She comes across as a no-nonsense woman who never shies away from speaking her mind. In an exclusive interaction with HNH Style, Nausheen Shah spoke about her journey with honest intentions.She further made some shocking revelations about the camps in the industry. Read on…

HNH Style: You started off your career as a model and then ventured into acting. How do you look back at your journey?

NausheenShah (NS): If I look back in retrospect, I wish I had a god father by my side.Having said that,I waslucky to make some good decisions on my own that shaped up my career. However, somedidn’t go in my favor. I have no regrets. It’s a mixed bag.I look at my work with affection andown every bit of it.

HNH Style: Did you struggle to find your feet in the industry? Tell us about your early days. 

NS: I have never been vocal about my journey, but I feel it’s high time to talk about it. When I started out, I wasn’t a part of any big group or had big wigs by my side. I did face situations where I was replaced from projects. In our patriarchal society, a woman who voices her opinion is considered demanding and unprofessional. There is a separate set of misogynist rules for actresses in the business i.e. they should look pretty and cute but shouldn’t act smart. The worst part is that they are further suppressed and treated with ill comments. They should not question, quietly do the work which they are given or else they will be thrown out of the industry. I believe that’s an abuse of power; at this point of my career, I don’t feel settled and contended. I haven’t been given the kind of projects; I deserve to be a part of. 

HNH Style: What works in the industry & what doesn’t? Professionalism more than talent? OR Luck more than professionalism?

NS: I’ll be honest and would like to address the elephant in the room that favoritism strongly exists in the industry. Plum roles and meaty projects are given to people with good contacts.They are the blue-eyed people who are in the good books of a big camp.I don’t deny the fact that talent completely goes unnoticed; everyone has their journey, struggles and battles. But this bitter truth cannot be ignored either.

HNH Style: What is the most interesting role that you’ve done so far?

NS: Well, I am still waiting for that to happen. I anxiously await a substantial opportunity that fulfills me as an actor. Most importantly my role should be equal, at par with the male protagonist.

HNH Style: What makes you a fine actor? 

NS:  It’s an interesting process i.e. I leave Nausheen Shah back home and try to become that particular character. It’s my job to shed my inhibitions, get into the skin of the character and do complete justice to it.

HNH Style: Have you ever rejected projects that later turned out to be successful?

NS: Yes. I was offered big banner productions like ‘Pyarey Afzal’, ‘Diyar-e-Dil’ and a couple of other biggies. For some reasons, I couldn’t sign the dotted line. I feel I should have gone the extra mile to be part of such projects.

HNH Style: Your ongoing drama ‘Pehli Si Mohabbat’ is a huge hit. But why do we get to see so little of you? What made you sign on a role that has a lesser screen time?

NS: You should be asking this question to the channel and producers. I did ‘Pehli Si Mohabbat’ for my friend 'Abdullah Seja’. I did what I was offered to do. The show isn’t over yet; so, hold your horses and don’t jump to conclusions. There’s a lot more to come.

HNH Style: Do you differentiate between a lead role and a character role?  

NS: Off course, there is a big difference. You will not be taken seriously unless and until you haven’t delivered a hit project with a leading role. My question is that, how will actors prove themselves, if they aren’t offered or considered in the said capacity? On the contrary, supporting parts do play a vital role in shaping your craft but they can’t make you a star. Unfortunately, such hypocrisy still exists in our industry. I would like to share a thought-provoking statement by my fellow actor ‘Imran Ashraf’; he once said “I will make the impact of small role into a big one, because I don’t get the offer to do a lead role”. I couldn’t agree more (smiles)  

HNH Style: Your love for comedy is quite evident as your upcoming telefilm is an out an out comedy. Your comments

NS: Comedy is something that comes naturally to me. I feel honored to be an integral part of Pakistan’s longest running sitcom ‘Dugdugi’ that completed a successful run for almost seven years. It gave me an opportunity to hone my comic timing. Yes! My upcoming telefilm ‘Bas Corona’ is a ‘pandemic comedy’ that highlights the household situations that occurred during the pandemic. It is produced by Gold Bridge Media and will air on Express TV.

HNH Style: Who’s your favorite photographer you’ve done a shoot with and why?

NS: I have to say ‘Rizwan Haq’ exactly knows how to squeeze every bit of the beauty and emotions with perfection. In fact, the collaboration of 'Haq' with the magician stylist ‘Nabila’ is the perfect combination for me.

HNH Style: When will you be gracing the silver screen? 

NS: I can’t say much about it; first, let’s just get rid of the ongoing pandemic.

HNH Style: There are celebrities in the industry who are social media stars. Do you want to speak one last time about your recent spat with Yasir Hussain?

NS: Do I need to answer that? The answer is already in your question. (smiles).

HNH Style: On a happier note, what are you looking forward to this year? 

NS: There are a couple of projects in the pipeline. It’s too early to disclose the details. I’ll let you know once I have the liberty to speak about it.

Rapid Fire:

Which five words would your friends use to describe you?
NS: Honest, caring, fashionable, trustworthy, introverted and not to mess with me.

What is your favorite healthy food?

What is your all-time favorite movie?
NS: None

Which make-up brands are you using?
NS: ZERO makeup by Nabila and a couple of other international brands.

How would you define your style?
Different from the rest.

How long does it take you to get ready in the morning?
Twenty minutes.

When you're at work, what are some of your favorite things to do?
Going on set, getting ready and being someone else is fun and I enjoy the entire process. I am always eager to look forward to my director’s reaction to see whether I did justice to a particular scene.

What’s the strangest thing you have ever eaten?
I had mistakenly eaten something strange in London. However,the management was clearly instructed to serve Halal food.

Where would you go, if you become invisible? 
I can go anywhere I want to; I don’t have to be invisible for that. (laughs).

What was the first thing you bought from your first paycheque?
I don’t exactly remember, but yes, I was extremely happy.

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