Azekah Daniel sat down with Fuchsia magazine and opened up about her journey as an actress and how her first job in a television serial de-moralized her and made her want to quit the industry completely. She explained that she had no prior experience in acting and was working as a model and an air hostess when she was selected to star in a television series filming in Japan which was being produced by Dr. Ali Kazmi, who is also producing Dunk. Azekah re-called that because of her lack of training, some of her fellow actor’s couldn’t stand it and one told her that she could never work in the industry because she was untalented:
“I was working as a air hostess and a model, when I had signed up for a series being shot in Japan which was being produced by Dr. Ali Kazmi. I was nervous because I had no previous training in acting and I knew that it is not an easy profession. Although my director was incredibly good to me and was very patient because he knew this was my first time working professionally, however other actors were not. One of them said to me that I will never work in this industry because I’m untalented. This experience disheartened me a lot because I was quite young at that time and didn’t have any friends or connections in the industry to receive some guidance from. So I decided to quit acting.”
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This incident, Azekah said that for three years she did not search for another acting job because she was aware of how untalented she was. She re-called that she kept modelling and was a part of a Cornetto campaign which was quite successful, and then she received a call from Geo studios to play a part in the small series, which she was initially scared to take on because of her previous experience.
However, during the filming of the series Azekah opened up about how it was Yasra Rizvi who had helped her master her craft and she still cherishes all the support she received from her:
“During the shoot, I was struggling with dialogue delivery and in between the takes, I remember the director smacked his hand on his head saying “Forget this!” and left the set. I was hiding in a room quite upset because I thought that this was a repetition of my first job and I couldn’t figure out how to fix it because I had no training in acting. Then it was Yasra Rizvi who taught me the craft. She was working on the show and saw how the director was angry at me. Then she asked for a pen and chart paper and gave me a mini workshop on dialogue delivery, which I still keep with me to this day.”
The actress said that to this day she is still so grateful for all the help Yasra Rizvi had given her, and had the opportunity to thank her on the set of Dunk and told her that if it hadn’t been for people like her she wouldn’t have had been able to enter this place.
Azekah further said that the change she would like to see in the entertainment industry is for senior actors to be more accommodating and patient towards younger actors, and make sure that they are comfortable on set with them because the backlash she received from her first experience had almost made her quit:
“In the entertainment industry you’re on your own so then some negative feedback can be really de-motivating. Now I try my best to make my junior’s feel extremely comfortable on set with me because they are working professionally for the first time. I would wish for other senior actors to act the same way and make newcomers feel welcome.”
You can watch the complete video below: