There is no dearth of talented and beautiful actresses in Pakistan. We admire all these wonderful ladies and their prowesses for taking Pakistani industry forward. More power to you all.
We did a small list a while ago where we talked about what kinda projects worked for our beloved Pakistani actors and what didn’t. Here’s a similar list we’ve made for women because we believe in equality, ofc. (Let us know if we’ve gone too far with this joke.)
Here are the lists of what is the kinda work we have liked of these actresses and what is the kinda work we’d like them to do in the future and what’s the stuff we really wish they’d stay away from.
- Mahira Khan
Mahira is one of Pakistan’s leading actresses and is currently the brand ambassador for many leading, international brands as well. We have really loved Mahira’s style and work evolution from her days as VJ to Raees to now, the upcoming, Saat Din Mohabbat In.
What works: Her performances in Verna and Shehr e Zaat. Whether it was her ability to beat a man to a pulp or her vulnerable stares into the mirror, Mahira shone beautifully. However.. well. Let’s move to the next point.
What doesn’t: Verna and Shehr e Zaat had both. Verna had many technical issues as a film and Shehr e Zaat’s plot itself was very problematic (brat turns pious and goes back to cheating husband? No thank you please.) We wish Mahira would do more cerebral roles and meaty scripts that show the world how she’s always so much more than a pretty face.
- Saba Qamar
Saba is a firebrand actress and model and host. She also starred in Hindi Medium, a Bollywood film, alongside Irrfan Khan. The film was a commercial success but it is unfortunate that Saba did not get a chance to promote the film.
What works: Saba was phenomenal in Baaghi and as host in Hum Sub Umeed Se Hain. We hope to see her more comedy roles though – a funny, beautiful, strong woman – we like!
What doesn’t: Unpopular opinion but her depiction as Noor Jehan in Manto was more Saba than anything else – which is fine, since Saba’s own star power seemed to compensate fairly enough but we wish she’d have added more layers and nuance to the role of Noor Jehan in Manto.
- Mehwish Hayat
Mehwish’s evolution as a style icon and an artist is truly commendable. She has always been a very strong actress and we are very happy to see the success and laurels she is receiving for her current meteoric rise.
What works: Dillagi, Actor in Law
What doesn’t: Punjab Nahi Jaungi. We really loved the film but did she have to go back to the guy who slapped her? Ew. We know that it was a writer’s call but we don’t want to see strong, beautiful women making weak af decisions like that.
- Sajal Ali
We remember seeing Sajal in Behadd and in Nanhi – and we are behadd proud that this nanhi has come to do films like Mom and a drama like O Rangreza. More power to you, girl.
What works: O Rangreza. Yaqeen Ka Safar. She was an absolute master of her craft in Mom too, which is no mean feat when you’re sharing a screenspace with Sri Devi and Nawazuddin Siddiqui.
What doesn’t: Noor ul Ain. For some reason that drama just couldn’t take off. Oh and Gul e Rana was also pretty atrocious.
- Armeena Khan
This Canadian-UK based Pakistani actress captivated Pakistan’s hearts in Janaan, her debut film opposite Bilal Ashraf and Ali Rehman Khan. Armeena also starred in Bin Roye and later a hit Pakistani drama called Daldal.
What works: Janaan. Armeena’s naturally funny and she should really opt for lighter roles like that in which she shines spontaneously. We also want to see her upcoming roles in more international films.
What doesn’t: Even though Daldal did really well in terms of TRPs, it frustrated us to see Armeena trapped in a dukhiyaari woman’s role. Similar frustrations in Rasm e Duniya. Aargh.
- Aaminah Sheikh
This model-slash-actress is great at whatever she does. Here’s
What works: Cake. Times infinity. She was also very very memorable in Maat and Jackson Heights.
What doesn’t: I have yet to see a drama or performance that Aaminah hasn’t made work but she had a narrow margin in Khudgharz and even in currently airing Nibah.
- Sanam Saeed
Sanam is also another model turned actress who has tread her own path in Lollywood. And we love her for it. Here’s
What works: Cake. Times infinity. Bachaana. Aakhri Station.
What doesn’t: Unpopular opinion incoming. Zindagi Gulzar Hai. Even though she fit Kashaf and looked the part, she still felt too posh to us. (Please don’t kill us.)
- Mawra Hocane
What works: Sammi.
What doesn’t: Sanam Teri Kasam.
- Maya Ali
What works: Aunn Zara. Charming. Fresh. Funny.
What doesn’t: Mann Mayal. No more roti dhoti stupid Mannu.
- Ushna Shah:
What works: Faqeerni in Alif Allah Aur Insaan, Lashkara, Kitni Girhen Baqi Hain. Original. Inspired. Impactful.
What doesn’t: Courtesan in Alif Allah Aur Insaan. Forced. Deliberate.
- Ayeza Khan:
What works: Pyaray Afzal. Natural and warm.
What doesn’t: Tau Dil Ka Kia Hua. Unconvincing and disconnected.
- Sanam Baloch:
What works: Dastaan. Kankar. What powerful performances.
What doesn’t: Morning show hosting. She is way more talented than this.
- Kubra Khan:
What works: Sang e Mar Mar, Daldal.
What doesn’t: Andaz e Sitam
- Hareem Farooq
What works: Sanam, Diyar e Dil.
What doesn’t: Parchi.
- Humaima Malick
What works: Bol
What doesn’t: Arth
- Urwa Hocane:
What works: Udaari. Punjab Nahin Jaungi. Places where she can be spontaneous and au naturale work.
What doesn’t: Rangreza. The less that is said about that film, the better.
- Ayesha Omar
What works: hosting. She’s naturally charming and has a flair for style.
What doesn’t: Bulbulay. Pls no more.
- Ayesha Khan
(she’s retired so this is pointless but anyway)
What works: Khuda Mera Bhi Hai.
What doesn’t: Jeena. That’s right. We said it. Jeena was batsh*t crazy.
- Hira Mani:
What works: Yaqeen Ka Safar, Sun Yaara
What doesn’t: The hosting days should be done and over with now.
- Sohai Ali Abro
What works: Motorcyle Girl, her hilarious role in Jawaani Phir Nahin Aani
What doesn’t: Aadhi Gawahi
What works: Their USP as twins.
What doesn’t: Their USP as twins. It’s a double edged sword. Geddit? Okay no seriously, they need to separate sometimes too. Have unique qualities that establish them both as different stars rather than shadows of each other.
- Saboor Ali
What works: Mubarak Ho Beti Hui Hai
What doesn’t: Teri Meri Kahani
- Sonya Hussain
What works: Moor, Kitni Girhen Baqi Hain.
What doesn’t: Aisi Hai Tanhai
- Neelam Muneer
What works: Chupan Chupai
What doesn’t: Mahi Vey.
- Iman Ali
What works: Mah e Meer.
What doesn’t: the fact that we don’t see her on our screens anymore.
- Hania Amir:
What works: Janaan
What doesn’t: Phir Wohi Muhabbat. Phir wohi rona dhona.
- Sana Javed:
What works: Mehrunisa V Lub U. She was so beautiful it made us cry.
What doesn’t: Khaani. We love that she is a strong woman but the whole premise of the show is super problematic and we can’t get behind it.
- Ainy Jafri
What works: Balu Mahi
What doesn’t: Balu Mahi. It’s amazing how this film was equal parts cute and equal parts horrible for us.
- Sadaf Kanwal
What works: Balu Mahi
What doesn’t: Kaif o Suroor
- Hina Altaf
What works: Udaari
What doesn’t: Gumraah