“Sinf-e-Ahan” is the most exciting series to land on our television screens this year and it features the brave struggles of seven women who come from different backgrounds, but they all work hard to overcome the sexism they face in order to join the military.
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Among the star studded cast list includes some new faces like Merub Ali who won the audience’s hearts with her role as Shahista, Gul’s younger sister who encourages her mother to let her sister follow her dreams to join the army. This is her debut role as she was previously an Instagram influencer who previously starred in Sajad Ali’s music video “Lagaya Dil”
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In an interview with Something Haute, Merub Ali shared how she came to audition for the role of Shaista for “Sinf-e-Ahan”. She revealed that Sana Shahnawaz who was the producer of the show, had been the one who discovered her on Instagram and had encouraged her to audition, and actress and Asim Azhar’s mother Gul-e-Rana was the one who pushed her to pursue it:
“Sana Shahnawaz, who is the producer of ‘Sinf-e-Ahan’ discovered me through Instagram and reached out to Gul-e-Rana who is a family friend of mine and asked her if she could give her my contact number. I was asked to audition and I was very unsure about this because I’m not so confident in front of the camera but Gul aunty often helps me when I’m unsure about what roles should I pursue to act in, and she convinced me that this was a great role.”
The actress shared that she had been told the story of the series which further convinced her to try out for the role, and how nervous she was when her first audition had to take place in front of Nadeem Baig who was the director of the show:
“They told me the story and what my role was in it and I loved it because it was about strong women who stand up against the pushback they face against joining the military. I remember how nervous I was about my audition because it was in front of Nadeem Baigh. But they selected me and I was relieved since they all said I was a close resemblance to Yumna Zaidi.”
Merub Ali also discussed her first day on set and how she was originally very nervous, but Nadeem Baigh and the rest of the team made her feel very comfortable and assured her that she was doing a great job
“On my first day at set, I was very nervous. I woke up early that day and I kept re-reading the script so that I won’t forget my lines. I remember I asked my mom to pray that I succeed. I was the first person to arrive on set and no one else was there and I was talking to the director about my role. He was very lovely to me and helped me every time I couldn’t understand a line and helped me improve my character, and the rest of the team kept assuring me that I did a good job.”
On her friendship with co-star Yumna Ziadi, Merub said that she was aware of how Yumna was a brilliant performer and was worried that she would have to work hard to match her pace during the scenes. But she said that overtime she and Yumna developed a close bond, as the former helped her a lot to become confident on set:
“When Yumna arrived on set I was a bit worried since I had seen her acting before and she outshines everyone else in room, so I thought this would require me to work very hard. But Yumna was a lovely person and she helped me a lot to adapt to my character and gave me a lot of confidence… From the first day, we would talk a lot between scenes and that helped in developing the bond our characters had as sisters. She is someone who I can reach out to whenever I need help and she’s a great friend.”
You can listen to the entire interview below, and watch Sinf-e-Ahan on ARY every Saturday at 8pm.