The debate that started with the airing of Turkish television series Diriliş: Ertuğrul on Pakistan;s national television, gradually transitioned into a debate on whether Turkish actors should be made the ambassadors for local brands.
As the series gained momentum in Pakistan, Esra Bilgiç, who essays the role of Halime Sultan in the show, was hinted as an ambassador for a PSL team by the owner himself. She was then confirmed as the new face of a renowned local mobile brand.
With respect to this quick escalation of events, television actor Yasir Hussain elaborated on how Pakistani brands should only hire locals as brand ambassadors instead of bringing in a foreign celebrity. Some actors agreed with him while others explained how it was no big deal. Then there were also those who defended him from the immense trolling that followed his statement, as social media users reminded Hussain that Bollywood celebrities had been representing our brands previously.
But now, popular television actor Aijaz Aslam has also provided his two cents on the matter. The Cheekh actor took to Twitter and asked, “Bhai jab Turkish drama aae ga tou Turkish actors bhee aain ge, masla kya hae? (When a Turkish drama will come, so will Turkish actors, what is the problem?)”
He then quipped, “Hum bhee Turkish language seekh laitay hein (We should also learn Turkish language),” subtly hinting at a probable colonisation. “A healthy competition is always good,” Aslam added in a calm and humorous manner. “Take it easy guys,” he concluded.
Previously, Anoushey Ashraf and Bilal Ashraf had also disapproved of Hussain's sentiments and explained how being a Pakistani should not be made the criteria for ambassadorship.
In a comment on Instagram, Anoushey wrote, "I'd be very proud to see our actors on a billboard internationally. If you want to work in tandem with the world, you must accept them here as well." She then added stating facts, "If Fawad and Mahira can work in India, I'm sure international artists can work here. Let's not be petty and instead use all our energy in creating better content, bigger budgets and make our own stars huge."
Bilal also took to Twitter to explain how art should not be and cannot be confined to boundaries or nationalities. "We need to welcome all artists from around the globe. Art has no language or boundaries, don’t politicise everything. Love and welcome everyone," he said.
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