Actor Mahnoor Baloch, known for her infrequent appearances in movies and dramas, finally broke her silence on why she has taken an indefinite hiatus from screens. Calling out the lack of diversity in our media industry, Baloch explained the reason for her limited on-screen appearances, stating that the industry still had a long way to go in terms of creating roles for women of different age groups and backgrounds.
Appearing on an Eid special on a local TV channel, Baloch expressed her dissatisfaction with the roles written for and offered to women her age. “It’s a pity that our industry is still developing in which a certain type of role is designed for women, in which the same roles are shown, for them its age limits are also set,” she said. “Unlike the international media industry, which produces stories on different subjects and people of various ages, the Pakistani media industry only focuses on love stories, portraying actors who are much older than their characters.”
One thing that Baloch stressed upon was the double standards for what qualifies as a hero and heroine in love stories on TV. “Even though the hero is 55 years old, he won’t look old. But a woman her age would get roles as the hero’s mother. It seems that people’s thinking is changing, and they don’t accept it anymore,” she stated, adding that its high time the industry starts adapting to this new outlook. “
However, Baloch is not the only actor to have raised concerns about the lack of diversity in the industry. Veteran actor Bushra Ansari recently questioned the type of content that has been bombarding our television screens. Ansari had expressed her disagreement with scenes and storylines fueled by domestic abuse and slaps being delivered to female characters.
The actor, who has been portraying the role of Maa Begum in the popular drama serial Tere Bin, shared, “The dramatic and aggressive character like Maa Begum is challenging for me as aggression and negativity are not a natural part of my personality.” She shared how it gets agitating for her when she has to deliver slaps to fellow female characters as the scripts demand so and hopes that violence on TV will be limited to criminals who deserve it – and not women.
Apart from Ansari, veteran actor Behroze Sabzwari also questioned the problematic storylines that have been shown on television. For him, meaningless scripts, whether serious or comedic, are nothing but a drag. Sabzwari talked about the Ramazan special Chand Tara, stating how it was a complete drag with a storyline that was a far cry from reality. “That’s not how joint families are. At least try to be true to reality,” he lame