Pakistani pop icon Atif Aslam enters the celluloid world Bol. He hints that Bollywood might be his next step
- By Manjusha Radhakrishnan, Senior Reporter, tabloid!
- Published: 00:04 August 28, 2011
took years of deliberation for Pakistani pop icon Atif Aslam to plunge
into the world of acting. But when he did, he didn't choose a launch
pad that played up his strengths either.
With no scope to
display his six-pack brawn or a story that revolved around him — a
general prerequisite for newcomers in their launch vehicles — the Tere
Bin singer has opted for a slightly unconventional route. His film
debut Bol is a tale of a repressed Lahore-based girl living in a
male-dominated society struggling to find her own identity. Aslam plays
the amiable neighbour.
"I was tired of doing commercial
music and I knew that this was the time where I wanted to explore
myself. People perceive me as this rock star who can dance and sing.
But my intentions of doing this film was to spread a social message —
it's not to show my six-pack or to showcase my acting or fighting
skills," Aslam said over the phone from Pakistan.
this is precisely why reviews of Bol pinpointed Aslam's role being too
succinct and half-baked. The film released in Pakistan on June 24,
while it's slated to be released in India and the Middle East later
"One of the negative criticism that came my
way was that [the] audience felt that my role wasn't enough and left
them wanting for more. I took that as encouragement, because it meant
people wanted to see more of me. But I want to tell my fans to watch Bol
to encourage Pakistani cinema if nothing else."
to the singer, who has belted out several hits including Woh Lamhe and
in Bollywood, his acting debut addresses a larger cause — women
‘Make a difference'
now, what Pakistan needs is to revive its cinema scene. They need
encouragement and appreciation and films like these will make a huge
However, his plans for his much-anticipated
Bollywood entry are not so altruistic. "I have been getting offers, so
you never know.
"You may even see me in a superhero
avatar. It's going to be much larger, and everything depends on the
script," said Aslam, who burst onto the Pakistani pop scene after his
hugely successful solo album Jal Pari in 2004.
popularity transcended borders and soon he was flooded with Bollywood
playback singing offers for blockbusters including Race (Pehli Nazar
Mein) and Ajab Prem Ki Gazab Kahani (Tu Jaane Na). "Singing and acting
require two different kind of energies," he said.
you are in front of the camera, acting, you get a margin to explore
yourself, but if you are live on stage, you have no room for
improvisation as such — it's just that one take."
A self-titled "fluke", Aslam says his fame "just happened".
today, I can't believe that I made it big as a singer. My take is — if
I can sing, anybody can sing. Look around you, we had actors like
Farhan Akhtar and Abhishek [Bachchan] impressing us with their vocal
tones. It's all about trial and error."
He also sings a few songs in Bol.
play a character who is in love with his music and the girl next door.
And the best part is that the music in the film doesn't stick to a
mass-produced formula. I hate following formulas for anything, because
it's extremely boring. That's where Bol is different."