Yumna Zaidi takes on 'Nayab' role
Ms Zaidi also highlighted the need for progress in film industry
KARACHI (Web Desk) - Yumna Zaidi, renowned for her exceptional performances in popular television dramas such as "Sinf-e-Aahan," "Dil Na Umeed Toh Nahi," "Bakhtawar," and "Tere Bin," is all set to make her grand debut on the silver screen. The talented actress will be starring in a sports drama titled "Nayab."
In an interview, Ms Zaidi expressed her excitement about venturing into the film industry while acknowledging the need for caution during the transition. She stated, "I'm very excited and also careful about the fact that this is my debut film." Zaidi added that she currently feels neither nervous nor anxious about the film but anticipates that it may become overwhelming as the release date approaches.
Although Ms Zaidi had previously declined numerous film offers, she was captivated by the "strong content" behind "Nayab," directed by Umair Nasir Ali. She explained, "It's a brilliant story and it is meaningful. The whole team is trying their best to execute it the way it should be. Now that we've chosen good content, we want to do justice with it so that the audience also enjoys it when they go to the cinema."
In "Nayab," Ms Zaidi will be portraying the titular character, Nayab, a cricket enthusiast from Karachi who faces societal pressure and a lack of opportunities.
Regarding her preparation for the role, she revealed, "I believe that cricket is almost a craze in Pakistan, but I don't know why or how, but I had never picked a bat or ball before this shoot. I have been practicing a lot. From the initial ABCs of cricket to practice matches on the final pitch, it's been a long process, and I thoroughly enjoyed it."
When asked if she follows Pakistani cricket, Ms Zaidi admitted that she does not. She emphasized the importance of avoiding stereotypes when trying to perfect an accent or portray a specific tribe in a drama. Ms Zaidi's focus has been entirely on doing justice to the character of Nayab, a girl who worships cricket.
Having won numerous awards for her television performances, Ms Zaidi was questioned about whether she believes she can compete with film actors after her debut. She responded, "They are the same actors. Do we have different actors for the film? No, right? So, the competition is the same then." Ms Zaidi also highlighted the need for progress in the film industry, stating, "I don't think our film industry is at a point where we can even think about competition."
Regarding her role in "Nayab," Ms Zaidi described Nayab as a bold girl who is driven by her passion and knows no bounds. She also mentioned the presence of rivalries in the film, expressing confidence that audiences will not only enjoy it but also relate to her character.
"Nayab" is set in Karachi, featuring real and relatable characters with cricket as the backdrop. The film acknowledges the deep-rooted love for cricket in the hearts of all Pakistanis and tells the story of a brother who supports his sister in achieving her dream despite their father's objections, as he himself could not fulfill his cricketing aspirations.
Director Umair Nasir Ali, speaking at a press conference earlier this month, shared his thoughts on the film. He stated, "Nayab is not just a film about cricket. It is a family film which has people from all walks of life. It is more than just a good sports movie; it features social themes, the family dynamics of Pakistani society, and the ambitions of a young girl. A mixture of these themes makes it more entertaining and compelling."
Apart from Yumna Zaidi, the cast of "Nayab" includes veteran actor Javed Sheikh and Fawad Khan, a theater actor who has previously appeared in multiple web series like "Churails." The script is penned by the acclaimed duo Ali Abbas Naqvi and Basit Naqvi, known for their work in the film "Laal Kabootar." The much-anticipated film is scheduled for release later this year.