Muhammad Asif’s upcoming movie “India mein Lahore”
As someone who had earned his spurs in cricket till his unsettling fallout, it seems that cricket will always be a part of who he is. But Asif is all set to reconstruct his life. He is embarking upon a journey of acting with the cross border romantic comedy film India Mein Lahore.
“Starting out, everyone has to struggle. This is a second choice as a career for me, but to get the opportunity to star as a hero is every actor’s dream, so I know I will have to struggle in the beginning, but my priority in life is still cricket,” says Asif.
The switch of individuals from cricketing to filmdom is not an unfamiliar one. Mohsin Khan, former opening batsman and national team coach pivoted towards a mediocre and short career of acting in Bollywood.
Shoaib Akhtar, another former cricketer, will be lending his vocals to Pakistani film Saya E Khuda E Zuljalal, which is being co-produced and written by his former doctor Tauseef Razzaque. Among other notable names in cricket, Imran Khan and Wasim Akram have been well acquainted with the Bollywood fraternity.
“I think you have to experience [multiple things in] life; this is a different field and I have been given a chance, so why not avail it? So what if this a different career path? If I get more film offers, I will do them,” says Asif.
Asif has been busy with making appearances on local television channels to share his cricket analyses. He still believes that he will be able to make a comeback to cricket eventually.
“You learn a lot as your life progresses. There is no doubt I miss cricket, but hopefully, I will be able to make a comeback. It’s in my blood, so I cannot forget it. I’ve gone through a difficult period in my life, which almost everyone goes through, but I suppose, you learn to manage,” shares Asif.
He has followed both Indian and Pakistani cinema with great enthusiasm. Actors, such as Mohammad Ali, Shaan and Shahrukh Khan have inspired him. In an attempt to hone his acting skills, Asif has attended a workshop organised by the film’s producers, and he says that he is keen on learning from the other actors who the film features.
India Mein Lahore is an unconventional film, which is set to launch the directing career of famed screenwriter Ikram Akhtar. The film held guerrilla-styled auditions in Lahore, Karachi, Islamabad and Dubai in an attempt to find new faces and hopes to encourage positive relations between India and Pakistan.
Tentatively, the film is slated to start shooting around March 25 in Lahore, after which the film will be shot in India.
Asif says that his attempt to venture towards acting is about moving on with his life. He says that he will be taking acting courses and hopes to get a better sense of his character with time.
“I think more than this being a new thing, the experience will allow me to explore and learn more about myself. I have not been on the set yet, so I can’t tell you how it compares to cricket in terms of enjoyment and satisfaction though,” says Asif.
There is an evident parallel between an individual on screen and a cricketer in the field. “Acting [just like cricket] is a glamorous profession. You’re around cameras all the time. Earlier, it was because of cricket, now, it’s because of acting. Hopefully, I will enjoy it,” he adds.
With all eyes set on him as he begins a new journey, Asif hopes that people will give him a second chance.
Published in The Express Tribune
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