Starting off with minor roles, Saba Qamar’s rise to fame as a leading actor was driven entirely by her passion for acting. Reuniting with her co-star and longstanding friend, Ahsan Khan, on the pilot episode of his new YouTube show Lo Kar Lo Baat, the duo took a drive around Lahore and reminisced about their professional relationship and Saba’s journey through the years.
“Ahsan Khan, we’ve grown so old! Do you remember our first project together?” Saba exclaimed as Ahsan recalled a former telefilm project at the National College of Arts where the two actors collaborated. The celebrities also discussed a telefilm they shot on the “picturesque hills” of Abbottabad where the Baaghi actor expressed her fondness for one song from the project before making a big revelation.
Saba divulged, “I really like the song from it that we performed on a hill. What a romantic song! I had a big crush on you (Ahsan) back then.” While old fans of the two artists have seen them share the screen many times, there have never been talks about a potential romance.
Ahsan remarked on Saba’s exceptional confidence despite being new to the industry to which she credited the Udaari star with an old anecdote. “Do you remember we did a show in Dubai? Hum awards in 2015, we performed together and backstage I was very nervous about how this would go.” Saba recounted her first on-stage performance.
“You said to me, Saba Qamar, they [the audience] are people just like you, who are you scared of?” she shared. “If fate has brought you to this position where they are watching you from the seats below then you must have something that you are on the stage.” Furthering on, Saba explained how Ahsan’s advice proved valuable and changed her life.
Over the course of their drive, they also discussed their mutual enthusiasm for work and Saba’s commitment to time. “If I am signing a play with Saba, I get so stressed out,” Ahsan revealed, stating how he receives a call from the showrunners, inquiring what time he would reach the set because Saba always arrives before him.
Commenting on their fifteen-year-long friendship, Saba relayed her surprise at the passage of time and acknowledged, “Thank God, our faces look decent [for our age]”, before launching into a discussion on self-development. Ahsan added, “When a person is good from the inside your face reflects that.”
He further complimented her, “You’ve worked on yourself. Just yesterday I was telling someone about the way I have seen you work on yourself and work isn’t really about how you look, but the way you’ve developed your skills.”
In response, Saba iterated the importance of making mistakes. “I’ve made a lot of mistakes. To learn from them is the beauty I think…I always say the more mistakes you make, the more you will learn and become refined. Your work will show that beauty. If there’s anything I’ll teach my children, it is that make more mistakes that’s how you learn.”
Amidst their heartfelt recollections, the actors also poked fun at Ahsan’s viral interview snippet from a 2017 award appearance in London where he referred to himself as a “British-Asian actor”, inspiring memes. Saba began, “Don’t you miss Lahore? You just stay in Karachi now or do you work…,” she trailed off humourously before Ahsan picked the cue.
“Yes, I work here and there, Karachi and Lahore,” he added laughingly. Comparing her childhood to her present-day fame and success, Saba disclosed her strong belief in manifestation. “When I was a kid, I would say and think big. I used to say ‘I’ll party with Shah Rukh Khan’, ‘I’ll do a Bollywood film’, ‘I’ll work with Irrfan Khan’, ‘I’ll become a star’- this is the law of attraction. Whatever you think about, you attract that. I always think big.”
Long-time admirer of Bulleh Shah, Saba expressed her distinct ideas about love which do not necessarily involve reciprocity. “I have always had a big desire for ishq, I believe there is no you or I in ishq. If you wait for reciprocity, that’s a transaction. That’s a business. Love should be unconditional,” she insisted.
She maintained that marriage is a “ladoo” that does not cure the impulse to complain. However, it is better to try it once and risk it all than to not, she added. The actor further appreciated the change in public reception to serious content.
Speaking about her film Kamli, Saba said, “People here say that audience doesn’t want to watch serious content. Kamli proved them wrong. People liked it and we got an amazing response. The clothes were modest, there were no item numbers. Despite this, I witnessed people crying in the cinema…they understand.”
The Cheekh actor went on to reveal her future plans which involve moving abroad and enrolling in film school to eventually direct her own film. “There’s so much to do, one life falls short… I need to do something new every day. If your life doesn’t have aims or goals then what are you doing,” she stated. I’d [rather] choose death.”
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