When I was called to audition for “Khate Sewon”, I obviously expected to get a minor role because I was new in this industry, and the director of the series, Roya Sadat is internationally acclaimed for her work. So I didn't have any higher expectations.
When they told me to do the role of Wajma, a main character in the series, it came as a surprise to me, I was even more surprised when I found out that they choose me amongst three girls who were also auditioning to play Wajma, and these girls were much more experienced and famous than me.
To my surprise, Wajma is a lot like me.....
Nevertheless, I was extremely happy to do the role of Wajma, mostly because she is the only character in the series that I connected with, she is real and relatable. To my surprise Wajma is a lot like me, she is soft-spoken, laid back, but daring. She is a young woman trying to find her place in a conservative male-centric society.
Wajmas character symbolizes the struggles of young afghan women in Afghanistan. She represents the daily social injustice of gender-based discrimination that women face in Afghanistan.
It is so frustrating that I must explain and justify what I do, whether it be my professional work or personal decisions
Many times, I have found myself relating to Wajmas experiences. You know, it is so frustrating that I must explain and justify what I do, whether it be my professional work or personal decisions, I am always questioned for my decisions because I am a woman. And I personally know many Afghan women who go through the same every single day! It’s even worse when you are in this industry, people often don’t take me seriously, they don’t think that my work has any value, even some people close to me tell me that I am wasting my time.
It hurts hearing them say that. They don’t see the hard work I put in every scene, the time and energy that goes, nobody sees that.
Before I entered this industry, I honestly didn’t know how hard it would get. But whenever it gets tough, I always try to remember that promise I had made to myself when I was 9 years old.
We didn’t own a television,
I grew up in Jalalabad which is 74 miles away from Kabul. I come from a poor family, we didn’t own a television, so I would sneak behind our neighbor’s window to watch the famous Indian series Tulsi.
I remember how astonishing it felt seeing my neighbors gather together with their family members exactly at 9 pm to enjoy the show. From that experience, I have always wanted to be a part of something similar. I want to become someone whose work people appreciate and look forward to. I want to bring people together and be a part of a lovely childhood memory just like Tulsi is for me and many afghans my age.
Mahal Wak, Actress, and model