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10 Feb

Frieha Altaf to make her film debut with Wajood

Frieha Altaf

In the ever-evolving world and its changing lifestyles, being good at just one thing doesn’t cut it anymore. You may be a maven, but then being a chameleon is all the rage and the mantra is that it could never be wrong to do more than one thing. So, when we found out that one of the Hautest names in event management, Frieha Altaf will be debuting in Jawed Sheikh’s upcoming directorial, we couldn’t help but don our investigative hats and find out more.

Talking to Something Haute, the diva that has done everything from modeling to management talks about how she ended up saying yes to Wajood, and what she expects from it.

Something Haute: You’re making your debut in Wajood, tell us a little about that? Why now?

Frieha Altaf: It was never about the right time to make an acting debut; my association with Pakistani cinema runs far deeper than using it as a platform for self-promotion, mainly for two reasons.

The first reason that I chose to make Wajood my debut was the fact that this is a pivotal time for Pakistani cinema, as we know it. The past few years have been revolutionary, to the point that the world’s audience has taken notice and been captivated with our creative mettle. I feel the time is right for everyone, veterans of the film industry and otherwise, to come out and support Pakistani cinema.

The second reason and this is largely personal, is that I like to keep my career trajectory exciting; I have always been a fan of filmmaking, and have ample experience in production. Acting for me, was the reasonable next step. Wajood truly came my way at an opportune time.

SH: What are your expectations from your role?

FA: I play the mother of the female lead in the movie. For me, I just want to use my time in front of the camera as a platform to hone this craft.

As I said I have always been a huge fan of the film making process, and this is the perfect avenue for me to push my own boundaries and make the leap to unfamiliar terrain. Needless to say, I am really looking forward to it.

SH: How has your experience been with your cast?

FA: Absolutely amazing. The prospect of waking up in the morning and headed over for my shoot is such a refreshing notion for me. The cast is a privilege to be associated with. Nadeem sir, Shahid sahib, my dear friend Jawed, all are living legacies. The amount of experience and theatrical pedigree that they bring to each and every frame of the movie leaves me stunned; it really is a pleasure to observe, and moreover to be a part of.

SH: When are we going to see the film releasing?

FA: I’m not sure at this moment, as the production has only started but I can ask for you (Frieha gestures to a production assistant enquiring about the release). I’ve been told that the audiences can expect us on the big screens later this year, hopefully around Eid. fingers crossed.

SH: From Event Management to Film, are you excited?

FA: I wouldn’t call it too much of a stretch really, remember, my years in the public eye, as the owner of Catwalk Events, has always provided for me an ample spotlight; I have in the past, made a few cameos in theatrical releases, most recently Lahore se Aagey.

Furthermore, my association with Wajood is partially in a production capacity as well, so I’m not too wary about the prospects. I like to think of it as the best of both worlds. I’m just really happy at this point in time, for movies and talent in Pakistan.

Look at Wajood for example, such a brilliant showcase of veteran and new talent combined. We have Saeeda Imtiaz, Aditi Singh, all making the debuts alongside me and there is such camaraderie amongst all of us. I’m short of words to describe how humbled and supported I feel every day as a part of this ambitious project. And I hope we have the audiences’ best wishes as we proceed further.

Shahjehan Saleem

The author is Deputy Editor at Something Haute as well as a professor in the Media Sciences department at SZABIST, Karachi. Socio-cultural theories and geography fill up the rest of his time.