One is transported back in time whenever the thought of Jal comes to one’s mind. That was the time when two young musicians, Atif Aslam and Goher Mumtaz produced a track called “Aadat” which took the entire nation by storm. However, the budding stars parted ways right after that — leaving the music industry with the most popular controversy of that time.
Today, when Aslam has made his presence felt in Pakistani cinema, his former bandmate, and now the frontman of Jal, Mumtaz has also opted for the small screen. He has made his acting debut, playing the lead character in drama serial “Kountry Luv”. The drama serial airs every Wednesday at 8 pm on A Plus.
“I was touring India when the team of ‘Kountry Luv’ approached me. However, before jumping onto the opportunity, I wanted to go through the script as I didn’t want to do any run-of-the-mill stuff,” Mumtaz told The Express Tribune.
Mumtaz, who was slightly sceptical before taking up the offer, was convinced only after he went through the script. “The script turned out to be really good as it was youth-oriented and full of fun and entertainment and I was also content with the character I had to play,” added Mumtaz.
The promotion of “Kountry Luv” starts with glimpses of Mumtaz’s real-life career as a musician and then it transitions to the life of the character he is playing in the drama. The singer can be seen dancing in flashy suits, fighting gangsters, romancing with a tinge of humour and using funny one liners.
“I play the character of Shawn, a Pakistani who has been kicked out of London because his father thinks he is a disgrace to the family. His father, who is a lawyer, is fed up of the things that Shawn is always up to and tells his son to get married to his cousin in Pakistan. As soon as he reaches the country, Shawn, accompanied by another friend, starts exploring in a comedic fashion,” said Goher.
So far, Mumtaz has received positive feedback on independent forums like YouTube and his personal page on Facebook. To add to that, Mumtaz has been vastly encouraged when prominent personalities like Reema and Ali Zafar appreciated his work.
However, even if “Kountry Luv” is a hit, Mumtaz does not plan on working for any soap operas if he is offered. “I’ll never opt for soaps because I think they are less entertaining and also because that kind of stuff doesn’t go with my image. I did ‘Kountry Luv’ because it was something people can relate to,” added Mumtaz.
Across the border
Meanwhile, Mumtaz is open to the idea of going to Bollywood — as long as he gets the right script. “Back in 2007-2008, I was offered two Bollywood films, one of them had a really bad script and the other one had the whole band along with Bollywood actor Tabu. The latter was a story about a bunch of guys making music and a girl in their neighbourhood, but since it demanded a lot of bold scenes we opted out of it due to cultural sensitivities” said Mumtaz.
The singer-turned-actor is of the opinion that if one aims to foray into a huge industry like Bollywood, one should be completely prepared and be versatile. “You should have some experience and knowledge about the craft that you are opting for; otherwise it is pointless to just go there because you’re famous.”
Published in The Express Tribune, July 21st, 2011.
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