The twenty-four-year old fiery actress, Yashma Gill, sits down with Haider Rifaat for an exciting chat about her thriving career and new drama serials â€œAlifâ€ and â€œChungalâ€
Tell us something about yourself that your fans donâ€™t know.
I hold a Bachelorâ€™s degree in Psychology from Melbourne, Australia.
What are your three defining traits?
I am intuitive, good at counselling and combat negativity well.
When did you realise your love for acting?
Itâ€™s been there for as long as I can remember. Growing up, I took part in almost every school play and recorded myself on a flip phone to assess my skills. I remember there was a time when I stopped watching films completely, because it made me sad that I wasnâ€™t the one acting in them.
Whatâ€™s the most frightening part about entering the entertainment world?
My work is seen throughout the world and that terrifies me. Even my personal life is under scrutiny by the media. I felt conscious at times, not knowing if I was doing things the right way. Thankfully, people have accepted and loved me. The glamorous side to this profession is pretty superficial though. Itâ€™s honestly a tough job!
What advice would you give others whoâ€™re starting out?
Donâ€™t trust everyone you meet. People will confuse you regarding the choices you should make. Befriend a few reliable people only and theyâ€™ll genuinely help you get through tough times.
Is life in the public eye easy or difficult for you to navigate?
Itâ€™s never easy â€“ your life becomes public knowledge, but by Godâ€™s grace, I take it positively and try to set an example for others.
What empowers you to give the best to your work?
Allah and my family. My fans give me confidence and they empower me immensely. I have come so far and have a long way to go. That knowledge instills confidence in me and allows me to persevere.
How do you plan to make a difference for women in your role as a performer?
We need to put an end to scripts that use the â€œvicitmised womanâ€ narrative for ratings. I think subconsciously our society finds violence against women socially acceptable. Our dramas subliminally send across that kind of message. The lesser you depict women in a negative light, the more we can put an end to such practices. Eventhough the female protagonist emerges as a warrior in the end, it defeats the purpose of responsible storytelling if her character suffers throughout the series.
Tell us about your role as Shelly in the new drama serial Alif.
Shelly is an actress and a supermodel. She is the quintessential performer in Mominâ€™s (played by Hamza Ali Abbasi) films. Shelly likes him a lot but is under the false impression that he admires her as well. Momin intends intially to only cast her in his films, but Sajal Aliâ€™s character ends up replacing her.
What other projects are in the pipeline?
Iâ€™m shooting for my new drama serial â€œChungalâ€ which will be aired on Hum TV. Directed by Farooq Rind, it stars Yumna Zaidi and Bilal Abbas as well.
Whatâ€™s your dream role right now?
I would like to play an air force pilot or anyone in a symbolic military uniform.
Actors you would want to do your next project with?
Yumna Zaidi, who Iâ€™m currently working with and Feroz Khan.
Who are some of your inspirations from the media?
You learn something new from everyone. I admire Bilal Abbas for being consistent in every scene, while also providing me with much-needed cues during our shoots. My experience working with him has been the best so far.
Sum up your personal style in three words.
Casual, improvisedÂ and comfortable.
Biggest pet peeve?
Lies and diplomacy.
Lahore or Karachi?
Lahore has my heart; Karachi has my family.
Best thing about your job?
It gives me a platform to express my creativity.
And the worst?
I donâ€™t get to spend much time with my family.