When it comes to versatility as an actor, Naumaan Ijaz can simply not be underestimated. He’s been around and entertaining audiences with his powerful performances for almost two decades now. His recent dramas, Sang e Mar Mar and Dar Si Jati Hai Sila are proof of his talent. While many artists have a different outlook and disagree with his undiplomatic statements sometimes, Naumaan doesn’t mince his words while speaking his mind.
“I am happier as far as television is concerned,” said the actor who appeared in Mehreen Jabbar’s Ramchand Pakistani, about the television industry; however, he’s not too satisfied with the majority films being made in Pakistan. “If we start investing now in our films and our filmmakers, it will take us at least another 15-20 years to make quality movies. Right now we’re just trying to put drama into films. In fact, most times we’re only trying to make a good copy of Bollywood which itself is a copy.”
Naumaan also thinks that Pakistan has a different genre than India or any other country. “We’re still lost and do not know what we want to do. We’re mostly focusing on comedy and sadly, that too, cheap comedy,” he said quoting a few questionable dialogues from a recent movie’s trailer. “Our genre isn’t the cheap comedy. Try to understand that. We have a unique genre which we need to work on.”
“We have limited filmmakers and we lack the sensible film cult,” he shared, adding that he believes it’s still a long way to go.
While it’s not entirely true that Pakistan is only producing cheap comedy since it has come up with movies like the currently running successful film Cake and the upcoming women empowering movie Motorcycle Girl, Naumaan doesn’t seem very satisfied.
“Making 5-10 films a year isn’t an achievement. We have around 105-115 screens but we have snatched films from the masses. We need to decide who we need to make films for; the 1% or the masses.”
“I haven’t seen any recent Pakistani films that I can recall. Also, why would I spend Rs 800 to watch an actor I get enough of on my television screen, selling everything from cell phone to toilet cleaners and everything in between?” he replied when we asked him if he’s watched any recent Pakistani film himself.