Amin Khan has been active in the movie industry for two decades, performing in over 160 films during his career. A successful debut lifted him to stardom overnight -- a popularity he continues to enjoy through sheer dint of hard work and dedication. Despite the rise and fall of many of his contemporaries, Amin Khan has stood firm in his position, and is still busy with several movies on his agenda.
The star recently shared insights into his initial struggles in filmdom and his rise to fame in an exclusive interview with The Daily Star:
Born and brought up in Khulna, how did you become a movie star in Dhaka?
Amin Khan: Before my Intermediate exams, I submitted an application to BFDC's talent hunt for a new face. During my ex61ms, a letter came to my Khulna home asking me to appear at BFDC for a test. Amidst much indecision, I finally chose to take the opportunity as a challenge and came to BFDC during a two-day break between exams. I appeared for my screen test and travelled back to Khulna the same night. Later, another letter arrived at our house, telling me I had been selected.
Did you become a star soon after?
Amin Khan: No, the entire process was harder. I arrived in Dhaka after receiving the letter. By then, I had passed my Intermediate exams. I started going to BFDC every day, but couldn't find any work. Every day seemed like a year. I couldn't return to Khulna out of shame, not even during Eid. I felt helpless at the time, going to BFDC at night to avoid mockery from others. Although I stood first in the star search, I couldn't find work for two years. Finally I had my breakthrough with “Obujh Duti Mon”, and since then I never had to turn back.
What was the response after your debut?
Amin Khan: It was a brilliant response. “Obujh Duti Mon” was a massive hit. I remember that after returning to Khulna following the release of the film, I couldn't sleep, as crowds gathered at my home to see me. Anywhere I went, I heard positive reviews. Everyone knew me by my name. It healed all the pains I suffered in the two years of struggle.
What are your achievements in 20 years of acting?
Amin Khan: I've also asked myself this question many times. Is fame and fortune all that I had earned? I believe these are not my true achievements. My success lies in the fact that I managed to sustain my career for two straight years. Another thing I consider as a great achievement is the love I received from the people. There are many professions in the world that allow millions in earning; but the love I gathered as an artiste is priceless. I've seen many artistes become great stars and then gradually fade away. Only a few managed to keep their careers alive. My 20 years of active career is my achievement.
What is your opinion of newcomer directors?
Amin Khan: Several talented newcomer directors are currently active in the film arena. I've seen many of their works. They can do better if they get the necessary support. But I have only one observation to make about their works; I felt that they do not make films for the masses, but focus on a specific audience. They should come out from this trend. If their movies only have a limited audience, then their talents will not be properly evaluated, nor will the film industry expand.
How do you feel about the government declaring movies as an industry?
Amin Khan: I thank the government for the initiative. Those involved with films for a long time had been calling for an industrial policy for a while. That demand has been met. It will introduce many benefits.
Whose inspiration did you receive most at the beginning of your career?
Amin Khan: I will never forget the support I received from Mohammad Hannan, the director of my first film. Many entertainment journalists also helped me in my ascension as a star. The viewers got to know more about me through their pens. If the journalists had not provided me great support, I wouldn't have survived in the media.
How much did luck favour you in your journey?
Amin Khan: Luck was on my side from the very first movie. But only luck is not good enough, you also need a 100 percent love for the work, and fulfil your duties with honesty. I thank God for everything. I faced three falls in my career, but managed to climb back. Many other stars couldn't recover from a single fall. Maybe luck favoured me because I love my work and stayed sincere and honest about it.
What do you miss from your past?
Amin Khan: My childhood and teenage days in Khulna. I would sit for adda everyday with all my friends at the school grounds. I also miss going to Hadis Park in the city. Me and my friends would eat faluda, go bird hunting, go on a buying spree whenever there was a fair near home. I miss the colony I lived in my childhood days. After 30 years, I recently revisited the colony with my father and a friend. The colony had a mango tree from which used to steal fruits. On my recent visit, I also saw the tree again. I also miss roaming around Khulna on a Phoenix cycle my father bought me when I was a kid.