Mohsin Abbasâ€™s Coke Studio debut single Uddi Ja made him an overnight sensation. Next, he made his mark on both the small and big screen with his work in projects, like Lashkara, Ishq for Sale, BNN, Na Maalom Afraad, etc. and the on-going talk show Mazaaq Raat. Nominated for his work in Na Maalom Afraad 1 & 2, the actor/singer/TV host has won many hearts with his killer physique and equally killer voice. Sana Zehra sits down for a heart to heart with Mohsin
How many relationships were you in before you got married? How has that affected your marriage?
(Laughs) Luckily my wife knows everything. I was in two relationships before I got married. Iâ€™ve learned itâ€™s best to focus on myself and my career. Yes, if you hit it off with someone then that may be destiny at play but otherwise refrain from purposely seeking a relationship out just for the sake of being in one.
You have stated that you are a very dark person in person. What does that mean?
I was brought up in a house with two older sisters but I remember playing alone. My mother always used to tell me that I have an old soul. My darkness comes out in my poetry and the songs I write for various movies.
Itâ€™s funny how I always end up doing projects that have a comedic element, for example BNN, Na Maloom Afraad and now Mazaaq Raat. But The theatre actor in me comes out in serious projects like those Iâ€™ve recently taken up, such as Lashkaara and Muqaabil.
Actor Nabeel who is a really good friend of mine says that I write sad songs way more than I should. However, for my new movie, Iâ€™ve written some really fun songs.
I do have both sides but my dark side is more dominant. When people meet me for the first time they say you are so funny on screen but in reality you seem so quiet. I donâ€™t know how to meet and greet them. Should I be rapping? (Laughs). I guess people expect me to be funny but get disappointed when they meet me.
Whatâ€™s the worst experience you had while hosting your show?
This lady was supposed to be on the set but she hadnâ€™t arrived. Ayub Khawar who heads our production was extremely upset as we had all been waiting. The show was cancelled and most of the people had left. Finally, Ayub Khawar was told that the lady had shown up and was waiting in the makeup room. She started crying and told us she had been stuck in traffic and the designer hadnâ€™t given her the outfits on time. She then asked for a 3 kg. cooked fish to be ordered, which she took home. (Laughs)
Ok Mohsin, we really need to know now who it was!
I will mimic her, â€œRahnaaay day naaa. Puhleeeze atsss vary baaadâ€.
Ok we got it!
Love in three wordsâ€¦
Mahween Abbas Haider. When I held my daughter for the first time that is the only time I felt real love. (Mahween tragically passed away when she was a month old.)
Any social issue you deeply care about?
Yes. I really feel that sexual harassment and rape must end now. Our children should be safe. I feel these men must be hanged and our army and institutions must do something.
If you were to be made Pakistanâ€™s Central Board of Film Censors chairman, what changes will you make?
I abhor crass jokes made at the expense of women. I donâ€™t like the fact that women always are at the center of such cheap jokes. Our wives, sisters and mothers are to be respected at all times regardless of age, body shape and background.
Do you believe in a soulmate?
(Long pause) I feel like we all have different ideas about soulmates. I believe a soulmate is one who understands your gestures, your body language, etc. In all honesty, who can be a better soulmate than your own mother? She understands you better than anyone. In terms of a life partner, there are very rare combos, one who understands your struggles and meets your needs before they even arise. Please do not conclude from this that I am talking about my wife. My wife and I agree on a lot of things and we disagree on a lot of things. And thatâ€™s the beauty of our relationship. We are two completely different people, which makes our marriage more interesting. But I wonâ€™t call it a soulmate scenario. Itâ€™s hard to find someone who is an exact match of exactly what you need.
Which Bollywood and or Hollywood actors you can most relate yourself to?
Jim Carey and Will Smith from Hollywood and Shahrukh Khan from Bollywood. Jim and Will did quite a few comedic roles in the beginning and then they branched out. I used to read a lot about how these actors achieved their success during my own struggling period.
Tell us something we donâ€™t know about you.
I suffered from depression after I lost my mother and daughter.
Which misconception about you do want to correct?
I do not take steroids please! I also donâ€™t hang out, drink, party or smoke.
Crazy fan moment?
Letâ€™s make it psycho fan moment. A lady from Columbia claimed she wanted to work with me on a project. She got a hold of my managerâ€™s number and was adamant that she needed to talk personally with me to explain it better. Then, she started calling at all odd hours.
One day my wife picked up my phone and gave her a piece of her mind. She got all flustered and said, â€œMohsin is like my brother.â€ (Laughs)
I kept blocking her number but she kept calling me from different numbers. Finally, I switched my number. Again she got my number, I donâ€™t know from where, and started calling and harassing me.
My request to everyone is that to please respect others privacy. We have a personal life as well and are not our onscreen persona in real life.
If there was a super hero movie to be shot and made in Pakistan who should star in it?
Anyone can be Batman but I must play the Joker. Fawad Khan should be cast as Superman for sure.
During recording what is one thing that you must have?
My lip balm. I have lots of different kinds of lip balms.
Go-to comfort food?
Iâ€™m such a foodie; I love food. Genetically, Iâ€™ve always been skinny but have always worked out. Currently, Iâ€™m on a diet and have stopped eating any refined carbs. Right now my favourite food has to be daal roti, black chickpea pulao, and our good ole fashioned curry. But my all-time favourite food has to be pizza and okra.
Any messages for upcoming new talent?
Stay focused and work with all your might and dedication. Iâ€™ve seen quite a few newcomers nowadays come on set and the first thing they ask is when they can leave. My suggestion is that the parties can wait. Focus on your work and success will follow.
Grooming and location courtesy
Arsalan Bilgrami of a.bilgrami studio