The chocolate boy Wahaj Ali

  • 09 May - 15 May, 2020
  • Eman Saleem
  • Interview

Fresh off the sets of Ehd-e-Wafa, Wahaj Ali is the new found underrated actor that has potential to reach for the stars. A few dramas in his career, the turning point came with one of the biggest hits on screen, the magnanimous story of four friends that shall not be forgotten so soon, proving his polished skills and knowledge of his craft and unveiling his ability to perform complex characters with finesse. Not many actors have garnered this level of recognition so early on in their careers, but of course, due credit has to be given to Ali for choosing his characters well and making his contributions in the industry known. Perhaps that is why his fan base is growing at the rate that it is and we already have high hopes from Ali for his recently announced film Fly with co-star Hajra Yamin. In what seems like a never-ending lockdown, we take some questions to the actor and here’s Wahaj Ali spilling the tea.

Icebreaker! What is the best thing about your job and what is the worst?

The best thing about my work is that I’m able to observe, I’m able to emote different feelings and through this I stay connected to ground realities. Worst is that no matter what is going on inside you whether, you’re happy or sad, you just have to perform and give your best so it’s a little insensitive but it’s my job and you have to live with it. But I am happy with things.

Tell us something about you that no one knows?

I don’t think people know that I’m an introvert and not fond of parties, I don’t go anywhere.

Why did you sign Ehd-e-Wafa?

The vision behind the project was a major reason for signing, this was the best decision that I have ever taken.

Do you think you have a high bar to meet post-Ehd e Wafa?

I don’t believe so, I believe that you just need to focus on your work and showcase the best of your craft for people who love you and think about what kind of positive change you can create through your work. I shall be mindful of what kind of work I do henceforth, I am working hard and trying to do meaningful projects.

The most memorable moment on the set from any of project?

I can’t forget that beautiful snow fall when we shot that scene from Ehd-e Wafa in which we gave speeches; beautiful shining snow formed a blanket and I cannot forget that moment. That was the last scene of the project.

What did you learn from your character Shariq?

One thing Shariq taught me is that don’t edit your soul according to fashion and I think we all should learn from the character.

What other kinds of stories would you want to work with in the future?

This is something which we can’t control but I would love to be part of any project with which I can create some change or give a positive message, I hope that our industry makes such stories.

If you could choose your own cast and crew for your next project, who’s penning the script, who takes the director’s chair and who is starring opposite you?

There’s no central formula of success, if you hire a certain director or take a certain writer on board or if you have this cast, then only you can produce a successful project or you can create a big hit. It depends on the content and people who are playing on their strengths, like if Sanjay Leela Bhansali is asked to direct an action film, I don’t think he can show the best of his craft. I am an actor and I love to play the romantic chocolate boy or part of any horror film so I can’t take any specific names.

A timeless production from the entertainment industry?

Dhoop kinaray.

What are some pressures you have to bear as an actor?

Actor should never take pressure; I don’t because under pressure I will not be able to perform effortlessly so it is better not to feel pressured whether it’s personal or professional.

If you could change one practice of the industry, what would it be?

I want to increase the pre-production time before going to any project, not managerial or finance management time but the brainstorming sessions and image. Sometimes we have a conflict on the script, I understand conflict can be uncomfortable but it is also necessary to increase brainstorming and work on creativity, only then we can create a good story.

What have you learnt in the lockdown that you are taking to whatever the new normal will be?

In this lockdown I've learnt that you cannot control the events, they're inevitable but you can choose what to focus on, you can choose what things you need and you can choose what change to make later. •