Junaid Khan’s star has been on the rise for quite some time. After a successful music career, he transitioned to becoming a critically acclaimed actor. This fortnight he speaks with Mehek Raza Rizvi about his work, peers and more
Your drama serial â€œKashfâ€ has a brilliant script and stellar performances. Tell us about the vibe on setâ€”the stuff your audience doesnâ€™t get to see.Â
The plot of the drama serial itself is very serious and apart from a few scenes with dark humour, through Kashfâ€™s father, there isnâ€™t much comic relief. However, behind the camera the atmosphere is very different. The entire cast is extremely fun-loving; most people think Iâ€™m reserved, but thatâ€™s not true when Iâ€™m around people who Iâ€™m comfortable with. Hira Mani, as everyone knows is full of life, Danish Nawaz is the absolute king of comedy on our set and Mr. Waseem Abbas, owing perhaps to this theatre background, has excellent comedic timing even in real life. Every time weâ€™re in the makeup room, itâ€™s a complete party! The female cast, in particular, is very supportive of each other; theyâ€™re always seen encouraging and rooting for their costars. The vibe on our set is definitely very positive.
â€œSun Yaaraâ€, â€œMohabbat Na Kariyoâ€, â€œKashfâ€ and another untitled project in the pipelineâ€”you and Hira Mani have done quite a few projects together. Recently, she called you her â€œlucky charmâ€ in an interview as well. How would you describe your working relationship with her and why do you think you two are casted together so often?Â
Hira and I have been doing projects together for quite some time now, due to which weâ€™re aware of each otherâ€™s working style and thus are very comfortable with each other as costars. Not only the two of us, but our families too, are friends, so a comfort zone has been developed. Our energy on set is focused on improving our performances solely, instead of having to worry about first getting along with or understanding our costar. We keep pushing each other to do better. The energy Hira brings onscreen is phenomenal; I love working with her because sheâ€™s very positive, is very cooperative and believes in teamwork.
As far as production houses wanting to cast us together repeatedly is concerned, I think that happens when an on-screen couple is liked by the audience. It also helps that weâ€™re both professional and with us, there wonâ€™t be any issues or tantrums on set.
â€œSince Iâ€™ve always been of a reserved nature, I realised I struggled with expressing my feelings at times, which led to people misunderstanding me.Â Any positive emotion that you feel must be communicatedâ€
Talking about the new untitled project, we want to know more.
Itâ€™s a very interesting script. The concept may seem basic, but the way the plot evolves, the way each scene is put together and how the characters are knit in, is all very interesting; you wonâ€™t feel there was a single scene that was insignificant. The audience is bound to remain on the edge of their seats. Armeena Khan is going to be seen in a drama serial after about three years; Armeena, Hira and I have had a ball together. Overall, itâ€™s looking like a promising project. I just heard the OST (original sound track) and loved it. I think the promos will be out in about a week and youâ€™ll get an idea of what Iâ€™m talking about.
Youâ€™ve also launched your own motivational web series titled â€œKeh Doâ€. Whatâ€™s the thought process behind that and where did the inspiration come from?Â
â€œKeh Doâ€ is an original song of mine that I released about seven to eight years ago. The concept behind it is very simple, yet personal. Since Iâ€™ve always been of a reserved nature, I realised I struggled with expressing my feelings at times, which led to people misunderstanding me. Any positive emotion that you feel must be communicated.
Over the years, Iâ€™ve read scripts and characters that have helped me understand, not just other people, but myself as well. Iâ€™ve given a lot of thought to who I am and what my purpose is. There were a lot of topics that I tried to decipher and breakdown. Negative thinking is something most of us deal with, so the way I dealt with it, is what you see in the web series, Itâ€™s all in my own, simple and brief words. Itâ€™s my own modest understanding of things, because, of course, Iâ€™m not a psychologist or expert in the field. Itâ€™s all about positive thinking and emotions Iâ€™ve felt in my life. Iâ€™ll be discussing them episode by episode.
â€œThe energy Hira brings onscreen is phenomenal; I love working with her because sheâ€™s very positive, is very cooperative and believes in teamworkâ€ â€”Junaid on Hira Mani
Do you think itâ€™s important for actors these days to explore the web and other avenues apart from traditional television?Â
I donâ€™t think any individual is bound to stay confined to one particular avenue, for example, I started my career as a musician. This is a very fluid field; whether itâ€™s important or not is relative. For some, like me, itâ€™s just a creative outlet. I felt if I wanted to put forth something like â€œKeh Doâ€, YouTube was the best place for it.
You started your career as a singer, as you just mentioned, but it seems acting has replaced that. Would that be true to assert?Â
Music may have taken a back seat due to my other professional commitments, but itâ€™s a huge part of who I am and will always remain the platform with which I started my career. Iâ€™ll always be a musician.
â€œEvery time weâ€™re in the makeup room, itâ€™s a complete party! The female cast, in particular, is very supportive of each other; theyâ€™re always seen encouraging and rooting for their costarsâ€
Can we expect anything from you as a singer in the near future?Â
Iâ€™m working on a lot of things, both with my band and solo. Iâ€™ll be sharing more details with you very soon. GT will be the first to know!
â€œIâ€™m working on a lot of things, both with my band and solo. Iâ€™ll be sharing more details with you very soon. GT will be the first to know!â€
We ran a little search on you and the web is full of projects youâ€™re doing. How does that leave any time behind for family or yourself?
The web at times gives the impression that us actors donâ€™t have time for ourselves, but over the years, Iâ€™ve learnt how to balance things. I think balance is very important, in everything in life. I donâ€™t really have much of a social life, so the time that Iâ€™m not working, on weekends for instance, is spent bonding with my family.
What is Junaid Khan like at home?Â
Junaid Khan at home is like any other regular guy. Iâ€™m mostly around my family, watching television, eating my favourite food and connecting with my loved ones.
Designer: Nauman Arfeen
Make up & Grooming: Sabs
Courtesy: Dewan Baqi Farooqui
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