Omair Rana is an actor who has played several dark characters in his acting career. From Pyar Kay Sadqay to Churails and now Dil Na Umeed Tou Nahi, we have usually seen him in grey or rather negative roles. Despite that, he has a positive approach towards his craft, is extremely knowledgeable and does great justice to the job.
In an exclusive conversation with Aamna Isani of Something Haute, the actor spoke at length about his role as the dubious Zulfi, DNUTN being an uncomfortable watch, his thoughts on Dunk considering he too was falsely accused of harassment, and his upcoming projects which include Mahira Khan’s comeback drama.
“I felt that DNUTN is not, in the market sense, being received or pushed as well as it deserves,” he shared about the drama not getting the viewership that it is worthy of despite being a great play. “People really need to watch it so we can redefine the standard in terms of quality,” he added explaining that it all depends on the demand.
DNUTN addresses several issues on different levels, however, the drama was accused of being anti-state and also was slapped a notice by PEMRA raising concerns over ‘objectional content’.
“Knowingly, I would never associate myself with anything that has an agenda against the state,” he clarified. “Good art, remaining in the boundaries of respect should try to jolt you so you, as an individual and as a country, can reflect. We should keep doing the good that we are known for. For example, we are a generous nation and that you can see in the story as well. However, we also have flaws that are hidden behind the beauty. Look at the problems and see what needs to be done to fix them.”
Omair said that we need to start accepting the harsh realities too. Several crimes make headlines but people want to turn a blind eye and stay in denial.
“When something becomes news, it becomes news because it is not common or in the majority. But the situation is alarming enough to already start being careful about.” Omair also added that even news channels are more interested in showing what sells and sensationatize it for ratings and viewership. “Our news channels are more entertaining than our entertainment channels.”
DNUTN is dark and unapologetic and that is its beauty. “I do not feel that it’s okay to dilute the message while trying to please the audience.”
The actor also shared his thoughts on why the three major channels did not take this project and how he was initially a little apprehensive about it.
“Maybe they couldn’t negotiate when it came to trade/business. Secondly, it could be about control. Thirdly, it could be a mix of the two where the channel wanted control and manipulation over the content which the makers might not have agreed to.”
Omair also shared that he’s been receiving appreciation from India and this project has started a dialogue across the border too. “It’s not an anti-state project. This is happening everywhere.”
Apart from his own drama, he feels Dunk is a socially relevant narrative that also demands attention. As much as he supports women and their rights, he is a firm supporter of equality for both genders. Since he was falsely accused, he too went through a similar situation where his family suffered. “The destruction this causes is only ‘known’ to those who get to experience it.”
Watch the complete interview here: