Under the lens: A peep inside Ali Zafar’s life

Published: September 10, 2013
Actor-singer talks about his journey to stardom and upcoming projects. PHOTOS: PUBLICITY

Actor-singer talks about his journey to stardom and upcoming projects. PHOTOS: PUBLICITY


While we all love to hate him, Ali Zafar has indisputably built a name for himself. With valiant efforts and of course Channo Ki Aankh, he catapulted straight to stardom.

Be it the cheesy lyrics, catchy tune or his eccentric voice quality, the single was on everyone’s lips whether they liked it or not! His dream however, didn’t end there. He decided it was time to jump on board the Bolly train with movies such as Teray Bin Laden and London, Paris, New York. And currently, he’s busy working on two more – rom-com Aman Ki Asha and action-thriller Kill Dill – along with a fourth studio album.

The journey of a star is never a hassle-free one and things were no different for Zafar. “A lot of dreaming, believing and hard work goes into it. You sleep it, eat it, wake up to it, live it, breathe it and most of all, you stick to it, be it music, films or sketching in a lobby,” he says about how his dream came true. “It’s important to follow your instincts and I did that – I gave into my passion for music and acting.” He feels everyone faces obstacles but it’s how you deal with them, which makes all the difference.

“Growing up, I used to watch a lot of Amitabh Bachchan movies and later, when I was a bit older, I watched Dilip [Kumar] saab’s,” Zafar says on his inspiration to act. “People remember them even today for the characters they played. And I would love to do play such roles that would leave a mark.”

When it comes to having a conscience, Zafar insists that he has one and he portrays it via his selection of movies. “When I choose a script, I keep general values of my home country in mind. I don’t accept roles that don’t appeal to me,” he asserts, adding that he’s only signed those movies which he felt he could relate to. But would he be interested in working in our local film industry? “I’m not against [the idea of] working in Lollywood or anything. It’s just that I haven’t been offered anything substantial yet.”

“It’s thrilling to see the Pakistani film industry going through a renovation and hopefully, it will be revived back to its glorious days,” Zafar adds sanguinely. “However, I’m not an expert in forecasting trends, but I think it’s on the right track.”

Balancing act – music or acting?

It’s important to not forget your roots and Zafar remembers them vividly. He started his career off with music, and despite working in one of the largest film industries in the world, he isn’t ready to give up his singing career.

“I guess I’m good at multi-tasking – I divide my time equally and stay dedicated to each discipline,” he explains. The increase in work load has not deterred him in any way from achieving his goals. “After all, I love doing what I do and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Even when I’m shooting, I can very well be writing a song or composing music simultaneously.” At the shooting of his film Chashme Baddoor, he admits that he was busy recording music for another movie in his free time.

Zafar reveals that his fourth music album is currently in production, and the heart-rendering melodies will surely be a treat for his fans. He also highlights that the music scene in Pakistan has always been alive. “And I’m doing my part in contributing to the music industry as are others – I think it’s very adequate,” he says. “I will always be a part of the music industry as I started my career there.”

Published in The Express Tribune, September 11th, 2013.

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Reader Comments (12)

  • Asad
    Sep 10, 2013 - 7:07PM

    A true role model he is,he struggled a lot and now he’s living a life people dream of.


  • Saeeba Fahim
    Sep 10, 2013 - 7:40PM

    Ali Zafar is an averages actor and his insertion into Bollywood, has proven that his mediocre films of chocolate hero prancing around with Indian actress only makes for forgetful acting history. He lost the lead role in The Reluctant Fundamentailt to Riz Ahmed a Brit-Pak young actor who has a similar background in hip hop music but Riz is not afraid to take challenging roles that displays his various sides unlike Ali Zafar he is not afraid to do raunch sex scenes to prove his acting capability. This has catapulted his carrier & they are lining up to cast him in big budget films on the other hand even though Ali Zafar has been in Bollywoos for a while he has hardly had any serious consideration from the international film scene because his acting capability is limited his advertising his shirtless body has bought no attention and none of the new films are not even considering him he has made no effort to help our ailing film industry but is ready to jump on the bandwagon when it is being revived!


  • bilal
    Sep 10, 2013 - 7:43PM

    “I’m not against [the idea of] working in Lollywood or anything. It’s just that I haven’t been offered anything substantial yet.

    Ali Zafar was offered a substantial role in Khuda Kay Liye, Shoaib Mansoor though wasn’t impressed by Ali’s acting skills and dropped him from the project after shooting some scenes with him and in came Fawad Afzal Khan and the rest as they say is history…


  • ishtiaq
    Sep 10, 2013 - 8:37PM

    Ali is a good singer,model , but he is not a good actor..


  • Saeed
    Sep 10, 2013 - 8:46PM

    Dear Ali Zafar
    Please do not become Tablighee …
    We will love to see you as a good actor and nice singer

    Quetta Balochistan


  • PiS
    Sep 10, 2013 - 10:56PM

    @bilal your information is not true. Ali Zafar’s parent did not want him to work in KKL because of the controvertial nature of the movie. So Ali left the movie and Shoaib Mansoor was not pleased. Fawad came in as only a replacement, but he did outdo himself in playing that role.


  • optimist
    Sep 10, 2013 - 11:37PM

    @ Bilal

    Ali Zafar wasn’t dropped from the film. He got worried (wrongly!) that he might become target of the extremists.
    Accoding to actor Shaan, Ali Zafar called after 15 days of shooting and said: ‘Ammi nahi maanti’ (my mother doesn’t allow me to work in films)!


  • saad
    Sep 10, 2013 - 11:41PM
  • Np
    Sep 11, 2013 - 12:02AM

    The title should be changed to ‘A peep inside Ali Zafar’s career’.


  • PiS
    Sep 11, 2013 - 2:23AM

    I have a reliable source (that knows both ali zafar and shoaib mansoor) confirmed this. Also this type of thing happen in auditions not on set. That’s the whole point of auditions, to gauge if a role suits an actor. Ali has also reiterated this story in many of his interview. I am not a fan of ali zafar but just because people don’t like his acting doesnt mean he should be pushed under ths bus.


  • Farhan
    Sep 11, 2013 - 3:44PM

    Ali is one of my favourite showbiz personalities – humble, intelligent and good looking.


    Sep 11, 2013 - 7:30PM

    Ali Zafar have to keep same limit as he not shot the wrong demo.


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