When I interview people who give off a confident and friendly vibe, I like to immediately jump into the real conversation instead of dilly-dallying. Yasir Hussain is one such person – nobody who knows him or has ever spoken to him can say that he has an attitude or seems insincere, and perhaps that is why the following question was pertinent: Why are people not accepting him as the ‘hero’ of his upcoming film, Lahore Se Aagey? Ever since news broke out that Yasir, who played the character of Moti in Karachi Se Lahore, was hero in the sequel, there have been way too many harsh and negative comments that have come Yasir’s way.
What many people will agree with wholeheartedly is that Moti’s comic timing was so endearing that it was the driving force of the first film. In fact, it was this very character, according to Director Wajahat Rauf, that made him create a sequel in the first place. “I had full faith in Wajahat’s vision and belief in the potential of the character which I portrayed in the film and it is because of Moti that I’m the hero in a film,” says Yasir.
Of course, it is the personality traits of Yasir’s character that are unusual for a lead role in the film because male leads in Pakistani films are usually portrayed as suave, charming men who know how to talk to women, how to fight, dance, scream and cry. Stuttering isn’t considered very ‘heroic’, sadly. “If you look at the heroes of Pakistan, such as Fahad Mustafa, Bilal Ashraf or Ali Rehman. Even Feroze Khan! Woh toh baqaeda hero lagta hai! Compared to them, I don’t look anything like that. Everyone is self aware (about their looks) and I know I don’t go to the gym, I’m very lazy, I’ve never put on any creams or lotions (men do that too? Awesome!) I don’t look like the rest of these guys but I have worked really hard for this role and if people still don’t like it after watching me on the big screen then I guess it’s just my luck.”
And hardworking he is because not only has he acted in the film, Yasir has written the entire film as well, which should come as no surprise as the actor wrote the dialogues for the first film as well. But what Yasir also sheds light on is the fact that his character in LSA required him to look younger than the leading lady, which worked out because Saba does look older than Yasir. “I’m supposed to play a 25 year old,” and if he buffed up then that would have been nearly impossible.
It’s unfortunate that our society puts pressure on actors to look a certain way, specially in terms of their physiques. But ultimately, Yasir and I both agree on the fact that what matters more is the character. “People will like what they’ll like. Let’s hope they like this as well.”