Despite so many A-list Pakistani actors making their debut in B-Town all of a sudden, actor-model Sabeeka Imam feels that getting a foothold in tinsel town is tough for Muslims.
The British-Pakistani origin model, who is dismayed by the rejection from the Indian film industry for her Bollywood debut in ‘Queen,’ told the Express Tribune, “I have seen how Muslim girls beg, plead and cry for roles in Bollywood films. They are exploited to a great extent.” Sabeeka, who claims to have taken a bold step by taking this daring avatar, opined that in India, a Muslim generally isn’t let to go to the top, adding “My life somehow belongs in Pakistan. I will do more movies here.”
The Pakistani actress, who always wanted to act in a film that had Kangana Ranaut as its lead, claims that initially, she was roped in for the role of a Middle Eastern belly dancer and not a pole dancer who had migrated to Europe from Pakistan. Claiming that the change of plan made her uncomfortable on many grounds, Sabeeka now says, “I have been greatly criticised for that role. I must clarify that I had signed up as a belly dancer. My audition was great because I had trained as a dancer when I was young.”
She noted that though she was scared of the reaction and also that she had never done anything like that on screen before, she had to go for it because, “had I not done that, what else was there for me? I was not comfortable but it was a character, it was no bimbo role.” Ironically, over the years, Pakistani actors like Ali Zafar, Fawad Khan, Humaima Malik, Sara Loren, Meera, Somy Ali, Salma Agha, Javed Sheikh, Muhammad Ali, Zeba Bakhtiar, Mahira Khan, Mikaal Zulfiqar, Imran Abbas, Veena Malik and many more have increasingly given Indian actors a run for their money when it comes to looks and talent.