Interesting to play Pakistani in US show: Indian actress Nimrat
After finding global visibility with "The Lunchbox", Indian actress Nimrat Kaur has landed a chance to play a Pakistani character in the fourth season of hit American series "Homeland", set in Islamabad. The Punjabi girl, who has roots in Rawalpindi and Lahore, finds the opportunity "very interesting".
Currently in Cape Town for a shooting schedule of the Emmy Award-winning political thriller series, Nimrat says "it is very early on" to comment on her experience.
However, she is loving every bit of it - especially since her role of Tasneem Kureshi, a high-level operative within Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency, has been increased from five to nine episodes.
Nimrat said she accepted the role without giving a "second thought".
"It is very interesting (to play a Pakistani character in a US show). India and Pakistan are culturally so similar...I belong to Punjab and there's so much similarity between us. There are food-loving and fun-loving people ...I'd just say it's a country which is a victim of circumstances," she told IANS in a telephonic interaction from Cape Town.
It bears repeating that the subcontinent was one nation till partition in 1947.
The fact that her character belonged to another nation didn't pose a hurdle for Nimrat.
"It was more important to feel the part than to feel where the character came from. It's an interesting character in the overall story of the show's new season," she said.
While for now the "Homeland" team is busy shooting the show, Nimrat hopes she will be able to visit Pakistan at least once in her lifetime.
"I'm dying to go to Pakistan once," she squeaked with excitement, before adding: "My maternal and paternal ancestors come from Rawalpindi and Lahore. It's a strange affinity we have towards people there, and I would love to get a chance of going there.
"It's a dream," added the actress, who is joined by Indian actor Suraj Sharma of "Life Of Pi" fame, "Mad Men" star Mark Moses and Art Malik, known for "True Lies" in the show.
Nimrat, for many, is the girl who entices chocolate lovers via Cadbury advertisements on the Indian small screen.
"Homeland" will air in India on Star World Premiere HD starting Oct 6, along with its telecast in the US. Her character will be introduced in the narrative in the fourth episode.
It may sound strange, but Nimrat had never seen "Homeland" before she saw the pilot episode of the new season.
"I wish I had seen it before! After I saw the pilot episode, I asked for CDs of all the three seasons and saw all of it! I watched it whenever I found time between work," said the actress, who has been going in and out of Cape Town since early July.
Nevertheless, she is yet to soak in its beauty in its entirety.
"It's my first time here (in South Africa). But I have not been travelling here much because it's cold and rainy. Otherwise, it's really nice and beautiful," she said.
Back home in India, questions await as to when she's starring in her next Indian project.
To that, she said: "I am finalising something very soon."
(Radhika Bhirani can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)
(Posted on 16-08-2014)