LAHORE: When British television broadcaster David Frost made a plan to do a series of interviews with former US President Richard Nixon in 1977, very few bought his idea of doing so. However, Frost captured one emotional moment of Nixon on video tape and it changed worldview perceptions for Nixon.
Veena Malik is very different from Frost and Nixon but has emerged as a hero that sprung her stardom around after a television interview pertaining to her appearance in “Bigg Boss 4”. The Express Tribune exclusively talks to the actor to get a uncut version of what really happened at the reality show.
You have worked very hard to become a star, after an interview with The Express News you went from a star to a hero overnight, your thoughts?
Credit goes to all the liberal people of Pakistan. I have been receiving messages and phone calls from the fashion industry and other people from all walks of life, telling me that I am their hero. I had to come on television and defend myself because no one else was defending me.
What do you think you achieved by participating in “Bigg Boss”?
Before I went to “Bigg Boss,” people showed videos of women being publicly beaten up by men to represent the condition of women in Pakistan. I showed the world that Pakistani women are not the ones that get beaten up; I showed that a Pakistani woman wears modern clothes at home and at the same time she can cook and serve others. The culture of Pakistan is not limited to wearing shalwar kameez and this changed the negative perceptions attached to Pakistani women.
If presented with an opportunity what is the one thing that you would like to change in the country?
Double standards and hypocrisy; make a dressing code of conduct and I will abide by it.
If Pakistan has to host “Bigg Boss” and you have to handle affairs, what would be your list of its contestants?
(Laughs loudly) Former president Pervez Musharraf, Sheikh Rashid, Jamsheed Dasti, Shiv Sena, Nargis, Maulana Fazlur Rehman, Ashwariya Rai, Meera and Britney Spears.
Any contestants from “Bigg Boss 4”?
Dolly Bindra. Even the very thought of this show is very funny. This could be hilarious.
Are you going to do some social work with the help of Pamela Anderson in Pakistan?
Pamela brought water filters with her from America. One filter costs $50 each and purifies the water. I talked to her and I am going to invite her to Pakistan to work in order to provide clean water to marginalized people here (Pakistan) once things settle down. I also talked to Ashmit Patel and he wants to come and work with thalassemia patients.
What has been the most shocking and interesting news since you left the “Bigg Boss” house?
When I was evicted and was going to my vanity van (dressing room), the first question that journalists asked me was, ‘Veena Malik, Indian people are loving you while in Pakistan people have turned against you. What do have to say?’ I was shocked and I said there has to be some kind of misunderstanding and I will clear it. The good news was that the Indians said they want me back on the show.
Who styles Veena Malik?
Veena Malik. Whenever someone else does he or she does blunders.
Who is your designer?
I rely on my own fashion sense. I don’t use accessories instead I believe in carrying myself well and that is what I try to do.
Who is your hero?
I spoke against the double standards and defended myself on television. There isn’t anyone in the entertainment industry right now that I look up to.
Is there a difference in the Veena Malik before” Bigg Boss” and now?
Three months ago, people in India did not know me now everyone does. In three months I earned what I earn here (Pakistan) in a year.
What are your future plans?
I have a lot of offers from India, USA, UK and Australia. I am going to focus of television mainly and would do films only if I get good offers. I am not going to do some typical ‘B’ or ‘C ‘class Bollywood films.
Is there any message you would like to give to the people of Pakistan?
The youth is my hope. We have to open our minds and change things around us. I am sure the youth of my country will support me wherever I go. And wherever I go, I am going to represent the entertainment industry of my country.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 23rd, 2011.
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