Luck it may be but this versatile devoted actor and wife of Mohib Mirza worked with laser-beam focus and hard enough to get where she is today. And today she is everywhere. She is probably the biggest sensation as an actor/model in Pakistan and abroad. Her good genes and pristine upbringing helped but there is no alternative to the goal she has set. And that goal is the true and proper revival of movies in Pakistan. And she has already made colossal progress towards the same. Once Aamina Sheikh, the name synonymous with TV Plays and commercials is now a hit even with movies over the world. Aamina is surely going places and is there to stay.
Having being brought up in the US, Saudia and Pakistan – studied in the best of institutions – this Virgo has seen and been a part of a multi-cultural environ. She is classy, elegant, glamorous and she does her job best. She justifies every demand of the role thrown her way and tackles it like a challenge every time – competing with herself. No surprises she has bagged many awards both locally and abroad. The recent addition to her mantelshelf is the Best Female Actor (Lead Role) for Seedlings Lamha which won People’s Choice Award for Best Film at New York City International Film Festival. She loyally works with her own team and is progressing in leaps and bounds.
The fair maiden took some precious time out for our readers to give her candid, casual and witty views about life, work and her experiences like never before – an exclusive personal perspective of things. And indeed she is a very perceptive and insightful girl!
What is your philosophy of life?
What you think and focus your energies on, become your philosophy of life.
Where do you hail from?
My parent’s thoughts!
You are multi-talented. You could have been a singer; so why and how did you come to being an actor/model?
That’s kind of you to say. Singing ability is something I greatly admire in others but never thought to be one myself. I guess that’s what it’s all about – having a singular thought and acting on it. With my theatrical background all through my academics and my Major in Film, I ‘thought’ upon being given an opportunity to act commercially and once I enjoyed the experience I focused all my energies towards it. That’s how I chose a career path of performing arts.
How did it feel bagging two awards at the New Your Film Festival?
Surreal! Felt so blessed and honoured.
Tell us about how you got cast in Seedlings (Lamha)?
I got an inquiry to which I responded and met with the young and dynamic team of ‘Bodhicitta Works’ who then knitted me into their story as Maliha of ‘Seedlings’.
How many movies have you appeared in including Seedlings?
Four, so far. As ‘Maliha’ in ‘Seedlings’ ‘Fatema’ in ‘Josh’. ‘Zarnab’ in tarang film ‘Armaan’ And one is a movie under the banner of Zeba Bakhtiar and Azaan Sami Khan which is currently under production.
What was the most motivating aspect of Seedlings that made you contribute such an outstanding performance in it?
Outstanding or not is for the audience to decide upon viewing. But what did motivate me to give it my all, was the scary fact that the story itself depicted a real life incident close to the writer’s heart and knowing that this is a journey of many in the ‘real’ world.
As much as it is cliched but do tell us how did Aamina Sheikh (you) of today reached where she is today?
It would be so much easier to tackle this question if I had one definite answer. There are a multitude of factors responsible for where each of us stand today, having said that another truth is that it definitely starts somewhere. In my opinion it starts with a thought. The rest is up to you – how much energy, physical, mental, emotional hard work you choose to put towards that thought – that is what decides the journey of that initial thought. My thought and my journey are right in front of you.
Tell us about your association with the ‘Always Karo Yaqeen’ Campaign. How did you decide to be a part of this initiative?
Rarely do multinationals devote their energies and budgets towards causes that make a difference. Primarily a society like ours is most difficult to tackel when it comes to changing mindsets or lifestyle choices as so much is limbedded in religious and cultural ideologies. In addition any concrete development or impact is hard to gauge of these efforts. Nevertheless, Pakistan is still where it’s most needed. So when a multinational devotes itself to the above, it is very heartening and actually an honour to join hands with them in making this much-needed effort. Awareness of Women’s health and hygiene, developing body-image concepts and confidence in a conservative society like ours where a lot of taboos already exist in even basic communication regarding the subject is a campaign that is integral. For it to be excuted sensitively and intelligently is even more essential. I am most impressed by the brand Always and P&G in their well-thought of approach in taking up the challenge and doing the necessary. One has to be inspired by a concept in order to endorse it, so far me this was very much in alignment with my ideologies and hope for Pakistan. This is my Nation.
What inspires you? And how do you feel you can be a source of inspiration for the millions of Pakistani girls out there who you will be reaching out as part of the Always Karo Yaqeen Campaign?
There are many occasions I find new inspirations. Recently I was reminded yet again, the power of a word! How much that can influence and change minds. Power of an image, of a persona – they are all vehicles of communication and change. It is these tools that due to the blessed nature of my profession have been handed to me, to use to bring about a change and some difference, regardless of how ginormous or minuscule it may be.
What is Aamina Sheikh doing these days?
Aamina Sheikh is evolving these days!
What are the plans for the coming 5 years?
As an actor, my efforts will continue to groom and educate myself in order to constantly progress and bring something new. Like more layers, naunces and maturity in my performances. One must experience and observe each day life and this world to the fullest in order to do so. My focus will most definitely continue to be on films and continuing efforts to see a booming Pakistani Film Industry in our our lifetime.
What’s your present dress-code and style?
I don’t have a consistent dress code. Versatility is my code.
Who would you consider your moral support in this journey of success?
Mohib Mirza, absolutely my partner in crime all the way, haha!
What does the word LOVE mean to you?
It means gratitude.
What does beauty mean to you?
It is a state of being, different for each, yet intriguing for all.
What lies ahead both in life and work for you?
A lot of learning, growing and evolving – Inshallah.
What names in the industry can be said to be your inspirations?
Myriads of aspects of many personalities inspire me on a daily basis.
Who is Aamina Sheikh in real life – as a person?
I am who I am, I think I’m fairly easy to see through, unless the characters in my projects require a facade for real life – apart from that, what you see is what I am.
What other latent talents do you have?
I was initially trained as an artist i.e. painting and sculpting. My father constantly desires for me to tap into that whenever I can, but I haven’t done so since college. I guess that would pass for a latent talent.
How would you best describe yourself both at work and in regular life?
Passionate! both at work and when being lazy.
A candid final word to the aspiring girls out there who looks up to you!
When you have a thought which is progressive, positive and holds potential of greater goodness; Act on it, immediately!