‘My estranged father said I would bring shame to the family by becoming an actor’: Amar Khan

Mahnoor Jalal

Mahnoor Jalal


Pakistani actress Amar Khan sat down for an interview at the Fwhy podcast with Freiha Altaf where she opened up about coming from a single family, and how her mother bravely managed all hardships to run the household. She revealed it was her mother and grandmother who raised her, while the father abandoned the family by moving to New York where he has a separate family.

“My mom was always away at work and my father always lived in New York with his family. So technically, both my parents were my nani,” revealed the ‘Heer Da Hero actress.

The actress opened up about how she always wanted to join the acting profession, but was reluctant to reveal this to her mother who consistently struggled because of the finances.

“Actually I always wanted to be an actor. I was hiding that from Amma. Because Amma has always struggled. When she started off in this profession, it was out of passion. But then she was a single parent, so even if she did not get the meatiest role, it was her bread and butter. She would take it.”

She also recalled how once, Amar was sent home and not allowed to give her Alevels exam because the fee wasn’t paid.

“I remember once I was not allowed to sit in my exams because my fee was not paid. Thankfully, they weren’t finals, just mock exams, which take place internally. My business teacher came outside and said, ‘I apologise because you’re a bright student.’ I always got straight A’s in school. But she said this is the rule, this is the policy and we can’t let you sit.”

But Amar didn’t tell her mother about this, as she recalled how she didn’t want to break her heart since she worked incredibly hard to put a roof over their heads. But it was at night when Amar’s mother came to her room and gave her some oranges and a hug, and broke down in tears.

Amar also recalled the last interaction with her father was at the time she was studying film in BNU, and wanted to become an actor but her father emailed her warning that she would be bringing shame to the family with this choice.

“When he found out I was going to enter the industry, he wasn’t fine with it. He wrote to me in a long email. We had a formal relationship. Anyway, I didn’t know him much.”

Amar revealed she wrote back and reminded her father that her mother wouldn’t be ashamed with her choices “The way she raised me, she had always instilled in me to be cordial with him, to give him an enormous amount of respect, break that ice, but unfortunately, I could not. And then we never spoke. I was in BNU at the time, graduating, and after that, we haven’t spoken.”