Being compared to Ryan Gosling is a compliment: Ali Rehman

Actor discusses his recent film ‘Daghabaaz Dil’, love for Karachi in a candid interview

Entertainment Desk April 17, 2024

In a recent candid interview with Independent Urdu, Pakistani actor Ali Rehman Khan shared insights about his latest role in the Eid family blockbuster, Daghabaaz Dil, directed by Wajahat Rauf and starring opposite Mehwish Hayat.

In the film, contrary to what the title might suggest, Ali portrays a character that is anything but deceitful. "My character in the film is a very simple, family-oriented guy. The most important thing for him is having his family be united," Ali explained. “He does more for others than he does for himself. He’s not selfish at all and he wants everything he does to benefit others.”

The actor elaborated that his character is selfless and deeply values his family, especially his grandmother who raised him, creating a strong maternal bond that influences his actions throughout the movie. “He loves his family, yes, but he’s very close to his grandmother because she has practically raised him since he was a child. So he shares that close maternal bond with her. He tries to do everything right and just.”

A figurative daghabaazi

Addressing the potential misconceptions due to the film's title, Ali clarified that he is not the deceptive one in the relationship with Mehwish’s character. “No, I am not the one deceiving her in the film, that much I can tell you. If I say more, I will spoil the film but I will say that the situation itself is deceiving.”

“The film’s story itself is a deceit. It’s not as literal as it is metaphorical. There are many elements in the story where you can see the daghabaazi,” he said, hinting at deeper layers and twists in the plot without giving away spoilers.

When asked why he chose this project, the 34-year-old revealed that the combination of finally getting a chance to work with Mehwish and the appealing script with its surprising elements convinced him to take on the role. “Mehwish and I had been saying to each other for a long time that we should do a project together…When I was told that Mehwish is involved in this project, I was very happy to hear that,” he expressed a long-standing desire to collaborate with the Ms Marvel actor.

However, the script held the major sway in his decision to say yes. “I really liked the script. I really enjoyed the wow factor and the twists and turns in it,” Ali explained. The actor, who has garnered acclaim for his diverse array of roles on the small screen including his 2023 hit drama Guru where he essays a transgender character, lamented the narrow scope of heroism on the big screen.

Heroes of Pakistani cinema

Ali reflected on the differences between his roles in dramas versus films, noting that while film roles often demand a flawless hero, he prefers characters with moral complexities. “In films, we typically want a straight-cut hero, who does everything right. We rarely find morally gray heroes. The role I played in Parchi was more of an antihero - he was a very gray character. And I enjoyed playing him precisely because he is complicated, he is criminal-minded with a good heart.

As per Ali, “Mostly, people want the heroes to be straightforward. They are typically written as flawless but in my future endeavours, I hope to essay a hero who has his flaws because that’s relatable.” He stressed the importance of relatability in characters, expressing a desire to explore more flawed and realistic heroes in the future. “In mainstream these days, characters have their moral compass always straight. You can make them different too but as an actor, the playing ground is very small.”

On Ryan Gosling and Karachi

On a lighter note, the Bebasi star was surprised and flattered by a comparison to Ryan Gosling, a first for him, praising Gosling’s ability to blend serious roles with comedic excellence. “I am getting this for the first time. No one has ever told me this before,” Ali exclaimed.

“It’s a big compliment to be compared to him, he’s a very big actor. Personally, I have never felt a resemblance…He is one of my favourite actors because I think that Ryan Gosling does serious roles with finesse but his comedic timing, too, is extraordinary. His film Bad Guys is one of my favourites. His performance in it is just amazing,” he remarked.

Discussing his personal life, Ali, originally from Islamabad but now a resident of Karachi for six years, described the vibrant, unceasing pace of Karachi compared to the more laid-back, bureaucratic nature of Islamabad. He said, “Karachi is a hustling bustling metropolitan city where there is no day no night, the city keeps going. In Islamabad, the day and night are very strongly felt.”

The celebrity admitted a strong attachment to Karachi, citing its dynamic environment and culinary delights, especially the famed food of Burns Road, as highlights of living in the city. “I love the food on Burns Road. We can’t eat a lot [as actors] because we have to be careful about our diets but you can go to any place in Karachi, you will not find a fault with food. There’s a lot of importance placed on service here and if you don’t do that, your business will immediately collapse because there’s so much competition in the city,” Ali mused.

Looking ahead, he expressed a desire to work with several leading ladies of Pakistani cinema, including Mahira Khan, Sanam Saeed and Sajal Ali, praising their immense talent and the diverse opportunities such collaborations could bring.

Have something to add to the story? Share it in the comments below.


Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ