Bashar Momin – Pakistan’s most expensive TV serial begins today
KARACHI: Geo TV and A&B Productions join hands to bring the most expensive TV serial in Pakistan – Bashar Momin – that begins today, only on Geo Entertainment. During a bloggers meet up earlier this week, the journalists and bloggers had a chance to meet the cast and the crew in a five-star hotel, and all were bowled over by the extravagant steps taken by the production team.
The play has been directed by Syed Ali Raza Usama, fresh from the success of his debut feature film Main Hoon Shahid Afridi. It has been a phenomenon all over the world that a director migrates to films after polishing his skills on TV, but Usama breaks that taboo for he doesn’t consider himself bound at all. ‘My work is my ibaadat; I am not bound by size of screen.’ Syed Ali Raza Usama said when asked about his return to TV screen. ‘Main screen dekh ke mehnat nahi karta … if I get a good script to direct, I wouldn’t hesitate to pursue the project, even if it was for the radio.’
For a director who called the shots for Geo TV’s magnum opus Kaash Main Teri Beti Na Hoti, Usama doesn’t have any hang-ups. ‘After Main Hoon Shahid Afridi, I realized that you can work at a lavish scale even on TV, and that’s why in Bashar Momin, I have tried to give the feel of a film. The TV industry in Pakistan has the potential and I tried to tap into the territory from the eyes of a filmmaker, and I hope the viewers would like the output.’
But the actors in the play are renowned TV actors – Faisal Qureshi and Sami Khan – who would be sharing the space with newcomers Sundus Tariq, Ushna Khan, Yasir Mazhar and Maheen Khalid Rizvi. ‘Actually Faisal (Qureshi) and Sami (Khan) are both film actors who migrated to TV when opportunities dried up in films. As for the newcomers, let me predict today that they are very hard-working and have the potential to be good film actors in the future.’
So what makes Bashar Momin a tale of romance, revenge, deception and tragedy different from the rest of the TV serials dominating the air waves? The director feels that the drama – based on the ‘Beauty and the Beast’ fairy tale – will serve as a benchmark since it is the most expensive project ever taken up in Pakistan’s TV history. ‘Never before has the jewelry of Nadia Chhotani been seen on the TV screen, Samia & Azmay’s shoes and accessories have never graced TV and renowned hair expert Nabila was consulted for the hair and makeup looks, something that has never been done before. When you endorse so many quality brands, the price of the screen automatically multiplies and that’s exactly what Bashar Momin has done.’
‘I must also mention that we have used famous brands from the house of well-respected fashion designers Ahmed Bham, Rani Siddiqui, Cotton & Cotton, Humayun Alamgir and Ambreen Khan for wardrobes which is a first for TV as well. We have also used next generation camera setup which will make us standout from the competition.’ The director added. ‘Furthermore, it took us three days to come up with the poster shoots of the serial, and that shows our level of commitment.’
Written by Zanjabeel Asim Shah, Bashar Momin is all set to ignite your screens today at 9 p.m. The meet-up was attended by Asif Raza Mir, the Managing Director of Geo TV, renowned actors like Humayun Saeed, Mehmood Aslam and many others. The only problem with the brilliant launch ceremony was the inept anchoring of Naveed Raza who called the director to be a trendsetter on as many as 7 occasions (that too in one line), termed Faisal Qureshi as the Johnny Depp of Pakistan (oh please!) and claimed that FQ was the best actor produced by Pakistan ever, clearly displaying his lack of knowledge as well as an absence of a script.