Thank you very much for your time. What's keeping you busy these days?
Currently I am working on some selective TV dramas. Since we have a number of TV channels now, the scope of working in multiple production houses is open and one gets the opportunity to be selective about the kind of roles they want to play.
What's your view of the current status of our theatre? There are artists who tend to shift from theatre to television after working in a couple of plays – what's causing this?
I want to be honest here. Our artists cannot take theatre as a full-time profession. They do it to nourish their passion and zeal. Since theatres don't provide money to facilitate programs, our veterans spend from their own pocket to arrange shows. I was a university student when I started performing in theatres. As I grew up I understood the importance of money for survival. Every theatre artist needs to have a moderate source of income to make a living. Thus, many of us opt for different professions like teaching, writing or acting in television. This gives us the opportunity to work for both theatres and private or public sectors.
You have worked in three films lately: Gohin Baluchor, Haalda and Chitkini. Do you have any other films to be released in 2018?
Working in these three films has been a great experience. I haven't decided on anything about new films. If I get a good script with a strong character to play, I will definitely consider it. Couple of years ago I worked in another film named Namuna, directed by Enamul Karim Nirjhar, which was never released.
Bangladeshi films have gone through a comprehensive change over the last few years, from production systems to script. Do you think this transition is a call for modification?
If I am not wrong, commercially and critically celebrated movies go in parallel in most countries. The Bangladeshi film industry is undoubtedly going through a huge change. We all appreciate that. But what amazes me is the time it took us to produce movies like Doob, Swapnajaal or Aynabaji. These movies have once again made our audiences hall-oriented. I am really happy that we have producers like Giasuddin Selim, Amitabh Reza Chowdhury, Tauquir Ahmed, Mostafa Sarwar Farooki, Badrul Anam Soud and Dipankar Dipan who have started with television and are now making substantial films for both national and international audiences. They have taken the responsibility to upgrade the condition of Bangladeshi films. I want to congratulate these talented producers for their relentless efforts to bringing international recognition for Bangladeshi movies. Today if I can go to movie theaters and enjoy movies with my family, it is because of them.
You have recently won Meril Prothom Alo Critic's Choice Award for Best Actress for your wonderful performance in Chitkini. How do you feel about this?
I am really happy and grateful to our respected critics. I was nominated along with two other very talented actors – Joya Ahsan and Tisha. The two movies for which they had been nominated were excellent. This award was like a dream for me, a dream that came true and made me believe in myself once again. I want our respected jury members to accept my heartfelt gratitude; this recognition is something worth cherishing.
Do you have any special message for your admirers?
I want to thank my audience for choosing Bangladeshi dramas and cinemas over Hollywood and Bollywood movies. Even though there are hundreds of national and international channels within our reach now, our viewers are actually putting efforts to watch Bengali films. This is a huge inspiration for us. At the end of the day, they are the ones we work for. Today, if people recognize me, it is because of their love and appreciation for me. Without them, I wouldn't have been half of what I am today!
Interviewed by Sanjida Chowdhury