Intelligent & Candid; Nadia Jamil opens up about her choices, career and family: Exclusive Interview
Creating a niche in the industry where thousands are silenced and shunned everyday is hard. Of all the leading actresses today, Nadia Jamil has carved out a space separate and unattainable for the rest. Not undermining any of our other actresses, Jamil has an unparalleled reputation which she guardedly maintains and upholds.
Rabrakhaaaaaa pyaaaroN! Tired sleepy and ready to crash 🙂 pic.twitter.com/dGYvQixqcS
— Nadia Jamil (@NJLahori) October 12, 2018
Time and again, Nadia Jamil has belted out with gripping performances with her hard work, élan, and sheer skills that had left us no choice but to appreciate in awe. The way Nadia dishes her work is so delicious and yet so abundant in intellectual nutrition. Her mantras are real, honest, and inspiring. She has meticulously exhibited myriad of exemplary work.
Here is her story, told in the only way it can be in her own words, Read on.
Celebdhaba: I feel people know you very well; you have the courage and modernity to speak. Who is the Nadia which industry doesn’t reveal much?
Nadia Jamil: The shy Nadia in self doubt. She creeps back into my life quite often. I battle her down and keep her at bay.
CD:There are so many actors who join the industry to fulfill their dreams, but rarely do they get fulfilled. What made you different?
NJ:I never really dreamed about becoming an actor. I just acted to the best of my abilities. I always dreamed about a happier and healthier world.
CD: Did you imagine yourself in your fantasies that you would be an actor?
NJ:I never fantasized to be an actor. I always fantasized about love.
CD: There is an illustrious list of your work which shook the audience with your versatility as an artist? Too name a few Dua, Putli Ghar, Dhoop Mein Sawan, Jaanay Anjaanay, Kahaniyaan series, Meray Pass Pass, Durre Shahwar and Mujhay Jeenay Do. What makes you a fine actor?
NJ:Thank you for considering me a fine actor. I still have to go really far. There is no such thing as fine actors it’s either a good or bad performance. I was fortunate enough to have the luxury to be picky and choosy about my work. The dilemma of not being satisfied with my craft really helped me to excel as an actor.
CD:You’ve kind of carved this very interesting niche for yourself where you’re the go to character for these intense and intelligent roles? How is that happened?
NJ:The script is indeed the soul of any project. I make sure that the script has something substantial to offer.
CD:You created magic whenever you did a Mehreen Jabbar project. How important the Mehreen magic has been in your career?
NJ:Yes. Mehreen has always been very important to me professionally. She gave me the opportunity to work with the best people, whom at that point of time were delivering their best. As I was new in the industry, we used to collaborate together to work on the scripts and themes in order to assure high quality work.
CD: As an actor, you seem to be a shape shifter. You get into the skin of the characters effortlessly. How much of your acting is pretense and how much of it is genuine?
NJ:My work is always genuine. Nothing I do is pretence, ever.
CD:There are four seasons of an actress? FIRST: when she is looks promising, SECOND: when she arrives, THIRD: when she takes a break, FOURTH: when she makes a comeback. How was the journey, as you have experienced them all?
NJ:I haven’t made a comeback as I never went away. You have to wait for it. I started my career with Madiha Gohar at the age of 13. My first performance was for a Saraiki play at the YMCA. (I had arrived). I am fortunate enough to find an exciting script – character and performing it with conviction. I am grateful to god for this besides, I love to teach acting as well.
CD:Has your stardom surprised you? What more do you want to achieve in life?
NJ:Stardom never really excited me. My kids are the only stars in my life. The most precious jewel a woman can wear around her neck are the arms of her children. The only star with whom I have worked was Edhi Sahab.
CD:In a successful career, there are moments of good fortune that change one’s graph. Have you counted yours?
NJ:Every day is a new opportunity to open doors for a good fortune. However, many amazing people came my way. Too name a few Madiha Gohar, Sussana Wilson, Shoaib Hashmi, Samina Ahmad, Mehreen Jabbar, Sania Saeed, Haissam Hussain, Asim Raza, Momina Duraid and Sultana Siddiqui.
I was fortunate to experience The Globe Theatre London, Eve Ensler and JPP. My parents, my friends, every poem I read, heard and performed, all of them have a great influence in my life. The universe and life are like treasure coves and there is so much to explored.
CD:You look at yourself as an actor first or a star?
NJ:I am made of the same chemicals, basic atoms and gases as the stars in the universe are made of. We are all made of the stuff of stars, and then I am an actor first.
CD: What would you like to change about yourself?
NJ: My Laziness
CD: How would you rate yourself on a scale of one to ten on the following? Actress, Anchor, Producer, Educationist, Mom
NJ: I don’t rate myself. As an actress I always feel I can do much better. As an anchor I try to engage the audience from the heart. I have never produced. I educate to inspire and to be inspired. I wish I had educators like myself at a young age who respected the process. Being a mom is what I am above and before anything else. It’s a daily struggle to become better at it and I shall never be as good as I want to be.
— Nadia Jamil (@NJLahori) October 12, 2018
CD: Who would you say knows Nadia Jamil the best?
NJ: Nadia Jamil
CD: What made you say yes to Nayi Raahein?
NJ: Meher Bukhari
CD: What do you look in a script for? As of now are you sure, which script would work and which wont?
CD: Is money important to you? How much is the quality of your day to day life is dictated by money?
NJ:It is important for me that my work gets respected. Many at times I have worked for a cause I believe in for nothing. It’s fine if the producers are willing to make money, I expect them to respect my work and pay me for what I deliver to their table.
Money enables you to feed your kids, get a roof and live a hassle free life. It’s scarier to see that money now a day’s is dictating people’s life. Nature is very essential for me. I’d love to live on a farm, sustaining myself from the land with the land.
My mother's teacher then my teacher Mrs Sue Harris Wilson. She led me to language, 2 Shakespeare, to he pauses, to expression, to pacing myself. 2 looking 4 a text & then the director. Even if it has 2 be me. She taught me how to be a seeker & how 2 create what I’m seeking. Bless pic.twitter.com/bzhCIHrwKd
— Nadia Jamil (@NJLahori) October 8, 2018
CD: You’ve worked with PTV in the past. How are things different now? Is the job getting easier or harder?
NJ: My major body of work for TV was with Hum TV and Moomal Productions. By the grace of god, I get work easily whenever I want to work.
CD: After all these years, have you become thicker skinned when it comes to the TRP game? Do you believe in making things happen or letting things happen.
NJ: I never played the TRP game. It’s a dumb game and makes TV mediocre. I let things happen, making sure that I make something out of anything and everything. Life is moving, energy is burning inside me therefore I don’t waste time. I don’t fake energy or passion anywhere. There are lots of loving and living things to do. Allah Almighty has given me an access, so why play games.
Birthday came and went. Mine yesterday Chotus today 🙂 Family food and lots of love 🙂 Yaaaaaay! Thank you for awesome meal @ThisIsEleniH and the company @SharingMyHope @NusratJamil @atiyajhs Neenee, Didi, Qeis & my boys!
Blessings, blessings, blessings. Missed my twitter family! pic.twitter.com/zYT65vmsld
— Nadia Jamil (@NJLahori) October 3, 2018
CD: Do you have any piece of advice for the actresses of the new generation?
NJ: As an actress one should learn to love hard, live honestly, perform with courage, know yourself, learn the techniques and then change them to suits yourself and your craft. One should have the knack of smelling good scripts, don’t settle for mediocrity you are in motion so stay in motion. Your character is your Mecca, reach at it as if you saw a prayer, with utmost integrity, open heart, thinking mind and unshaken faith.
Your only competition is you. Don’t worry about others, give them your best and expect the same level of focus and commitment. Work with the best as they’ll make you better. The best can someone be younger and newer than you. If you want to be good drop your ego.
CD:On a happier note, what are you looking forward to this year? What is something you are willing to share with your readers that they might not know about you?
NJ: I’m looking forward to my drama serial with Wajahat Rauf and all the notes are happy ones.. Yaaay!
Time bhi na….chewing gum ki tarah stretches them out.
The challenge is just a picture of you then & now. Come on share na pic.twitter.com/mfE8mHf9IO
— Nadia Jamil (@NJLahori) September 26, 2018
What’s the one thing you can’t live without?
What’s the one thing on your bucket list?
I would like to travel more with my kids
Name five must things in your handbag?
I have a knapsack. It often carries groceries, fruits, veggies, bread and eggs. Besides, it also has my reading glasses, a book to read, diary, pen and my phone
Your favorite cheat meal?
Jacket potatoes, Biryani and Aloo Gosht
One thing you always have in your fridge at any given time?
Almond milk for the boys, cold water, free range eggs and shami kababs
A super power you wish you have?
Super power to take away pain and numb anger
Snap Chat or Instagram?
One Instagram account you follow other than yours?
How often do you goggle?
What was the first thing you brought with your first pay cheque?
I brought a TV for my dad
Have you ever signed a project for a fat pay cheque?
What’s the one thing you can talk for hours on end?
God, trees, food, kids and myself
Whom would you like to star in your Hollywood debut?
What’s the most intelligent decision you’ve ever taken?
Speaking the truth
What’s the best excuse you’ve made if you get late for a shoot or appointment?
I never make excuses. Daant khaa leti hoon and I try to look massoom, so it doesn’t come down upon me too hard
Are you obsessed with Selfie’s?
How long will you last without your cell phone?
What’s the last compliment that made you blush?
All compliments make me blush
What’s the last prank you’ve played on someone?
I hid behind the door when someone was coming home
What’s the coolest thing about being an actor?
The script excites me a lot. The opportunity to act and falling in love… Yaaaay!
What’s the worst thing about being an actor?
A bad performance
Which celebrity gracefulness you want to imbibe?
Emma Thompson, Meryl Streep and Sania Saeed
What would be the title of your Autobiography?
NJ Lahori’s Survival Manual
Who would play you in your biopic?
Sania Saeed or Alia Bhatt