Celebrities around our entertainment industry have been lauding Imran Ashraf for his role as Bhola in ‘Ranjha Ranjha Kardi,’ and it’s about damn time to be quite honest. Ashraf, who was subverted for quite some time with the roles given at the start of his career is finally now being hailed as Pakistan’s greatest contemporary actor.
Celebrities like Mahira Khan, Mawra Hocane, Mikaal Zulfiqar and others have been commending his acting, and it comes at a time where his fans are replicating day on end.
Imran Ashraf is such a brilliant actor!!
— Mahira Khan (@TheMahiraKhan) November 10, 2018
— MAWRA HOCANE (@MawraHocane) February 9, 2019
— Imran Ashraf (@IamImranAshraf) January 9, 2019
Imran Ashraffff ranjhaa ranjhaa what an actor man !!! salute teeen bar ❤️❤️❤️
— HUMAIMA MALICK (@HumaimaMalick) December 7, 2018
I first remember a young, doe-eyed Imran Ashraf in the drama Gul-E-Rana,’ back in 2015 when I had just begun my descent into the world of Pakistani dramas.
While he had a mildly insignificant role to play, the softness his face held lingered in my head. Imran continued to steer his way across dramas, always unwaveringly basking in the shadows of his on-screen counterparts – yet never failing to impress audiences with his limited performances. Fast forward through to 2016, and we see Imran in a number of roles, but almost scoffed off because he never was given the presence he deserved; he remained the underdog of our dramas. ‘Dil Lagi’ tenaciously thrummed a more fiery role for the actor, as the doggedly loyal sidekick of Humayun Saeed’s Mohid.
Ashraf’s roles began to grow in essence, and it was ‘Alif Allah Aur Insaan’ that I knew was the tipping point for the actor to peddle his way to the stars.
Playing a transgender on-screen was just the surface for the actor; he was the emblem of an incredibly marginalized and ostracized community in Pakistan, and we often forget just how important our visual medium can be to change how you think. His role as Shammo capped off his year with a Hum Award for ‘Best Actor’ in a Drama – a reputable moment for the actor who had cracked into the realm of ‘leading heros.’
‘Tabeer’ was Imran’s remarkable and successful attempt at both screenwriting and starring in a drama alongside the budding Iqra Aziz.
An earnest drama no doubt, it was his next role in ‘Dil Mom Ka Diya,’ where despite being a part of such a strong ensemble cast, Ashraf shone with his own sturdy storyline opposite Hira Mani.
‘Ranjha Ranjha Kardi’ is the drama that has firmly pinned Ashraf onto the map, as Bhola – by far the most challenging role the actor has played to date.
To play a character who exhibits traits of autism is not easy, but Ashraf valiantly amplifies his acting skills up several notches – notches we never knew he had within him. Bhola is flitting at most, and Ashraf’s gentle voice and impeccably heart-aching eyes make him the epitome of melancholy. His delivery is outstanding, with facial expressions that morphe from kookiness to empathy and then sudden poise.
Imran Ashraf really is the best actor we have right now. Here’s to his rise folks.