Naimal Khawar Actress & Artist
Newcomer Naimal Khawar captivated us with her star-quality looks and performance as Mahgul in the movie Verna. With a debut movie alongside a cast and Director that others can only dream of, we sure hope to see more of her in the near future. Social Diary chatted with Naimal about how she got started and her aspirations….
Who is Naimal? Tell us about yourself. Your background, education etc.
I come from a Pakhtun and Persian household. I am a painter and a visual arts student from Islamabad studying at National College of Arts. I will be graduating next month and I am currently working on my final thesis that I am very excited about. Also, I’m a huge travel and art enthusiast.
How did you get discovered and approached for your first acting project?
It was completely unexpected. One day I just got a call from the assistant director of the film and I was invited to read a few lines to Shoaib Mansoor. I went there, delivered the lines and got the part. They saw my instagram photos through a mutual friend before they approached me. It was all quite surreal to be honest.
What made you agree to pursue acting?
I had never really thought about pursuing acting even though I had done some theatre in college. I agreed to Verna mainly because it was on a topic I felt strongly about and working with a legend like Shoaib Mansoor, the man responsible for the revival of Pakistani cinema, was an absolute honor.
What has been the most challenging part about acting so far?
I have only done one project so far so I don’t know about challenging, but for me waking up at 6-7 am was quite a struggle.
How was the experience working on Verna?
It was fantastic! Working with some of the biggest names of industry was a great learning experience. It was also quite fun, the whole team bonded really well and we had a great time on set.
Now that your film is playing nationwide, what is your reaction to the response?
It’s overwhelming. While some absolutely loved it, others had their reservations but what is really important is that it has started a conversation nationwide and that is great. In that aspect, I think the film succeeded in delivering its message. The film itself is so relevant and important for our society today. I feel proud to be a part of such a project.
Acting professionally undoubtedly changes a person’s life completely. Was your family okay with this decision or was there some convincing needed?
My family is very particular on education and the fact that Verna was happening during my final thesis year was a concern for my family. Also, when you hear the word film you think all kinds of negative things. Unfortunately, even today there is a certain taboo attached to it. However, I told them what it stood for and how strongly I felt about the topic, so eventually they agreed.
Is there any character you would love to play?
I would love to play a female version of James Bond. Bond with a female protagonist would be quite interesting.
What are your acting projects for the future as of now?
I have had some film and drama offers pouring in but I had to turn them down for now because I am working on my thesis until December. I will see what life has to offer after my work is displayed.
So how was it working with Mahira Khan? Do you get along easily with your co-stars or not?
She is such a lovely and humble person. We didn’t have a lot of females on set and she made me super comfortable. She is also such a dedicated professional and I learned a lot from her. I think the whole team got along pretty well.
Your recent celebrity crush and why so?
Henry Cavill. I mean, look at him.
Who would you like to work with from the Pakistani industry and why?
Sarmad Khoosat. I truly admire his work, especially Manto. Such a beautiful piece of cinema.
Any funny incident from the set while shooting that still makes you laugh?
There were a few. Haroon has such a great sense of humor, he had us laughing throughout. There was this one incident involving a senior actor that had us in fits but I can’t go in detail because it will land me in trouble.
What are some of your favorite beauty tips?
Coconut oil! It’s so good for the skin.
If you could have one super power what would it be?
I would love to fly.
How do you keep yourself fit, do you follow any diet regime?
I love food so I don’t really follow a diet plan (even though I want to). I do work out twice a week though. I also practice yoga sometimes.
Where do you see yourself 5 years down the line?
Definitely far ahead of where I am today.
Any message for your fans who have loved your performance in Verna?
A big thank you and lots of love!
Meeting new people from different cultures
Elie Saab Rose Courture
One thing you can’t live without?
My family and friends
Your biggest wish?
Have my work displayed at the Louvre
I’m not much of a reader
Scent of a woman
Your biggest inspiration?
Been the same since the past five years, Game of Thrones
Morning Person or Nocturnal?