Making it to Bollywood is a veritable stamp of approval for Pakistani celebrities. Be it singers like Atif Aslam and Shafqat Amanat Ali or actors such as Fawad Khan and Mahira Khan, many from this latest crop of artists have tried to make their marks across the border. And whilst some have been able to do so easily, others haven’t been as fortunate.
Let’s have a look at seven not-so-lucky Pakistani stars who failed to work their magic in Bollywood.
1) Veena Malik
Veena Malik started making headlines as soon as she went to India to participate in Bigg Boss. Her stints in the reality TV drama earned her considerable popularity, even if it was for all the wrong reasons. Veena proved she was willing to go to any lengths for a major role but her efforts were in vain. She only managed to sign some low budget projects and a few item numbers after she first appeared in Daal Mein Kuch Kaala Hai in 2012.
2) Humayun Saeed
Currently rated amongst the top male actors of Pakistan, and also a close friend of Indian director Mahesh Bhatt, it’s hard to believe that Humayun Saeed’s foray into Bollywood didn’t go down too well. The star played a negative role in Jashnn which starred many newcomers but the 2009 film failed miserably at the box office. And with that, the actor bought himself a one-way ticket back to Pakistan.
3) Humaima Malick
The actress who delivered an exceptional performance in Shoaib Mansoor’s Bol failed to impress in Bollywood, despite starring opposite its most popular bad boy Emraan Hashmi. Although she got her big break with Raja Natwarlal in 2014, the film didn’t generate much footfall in theatres and Humaima Malick didn’t bag any other roles in India thereafter.
4) Mikaal Zulfiqar
The renowned TV actor made his Bollywood debut with Shoot on Sight in 2007. The film also starred veteran Indian actors Naseeruddin Shah and Om Puri. After this, Mikaal then appeared as the lead in U R My Jaan back in 2011 – a remake of Hollywood classic Pretty Woman. He also starred alongside Akshay Kumar in Baby, which released in 2015. Although the film managed to do well at the box office, Mikaal received a lot of criticism back home for being a part of an anti-Pakistan film.
Now, how could we miss out on everyone’s favourite Miss Meera Jee? The star that Pakistan loves to hate, made her Bollywood debut with Indo-Pak joint project titled Nazar in 2005. As always, she managed to stir a controversy thanks to her bold role alongside Ashmit Patel. She later appeared in Kasak, starring Lucky Ali the same year. The film failed to impress audiences and critics. However the ever-determined Meera didn’t give up until her third Bollywood outing Paanch Ghantey Mein Paanch Crore closed the doors for her in 2012.
6) Mawra Hocane
The 2016 Bollywood film Sanam Teri Kasam starred Pakistani beauty Mawra Hocane in the lead role. Even though the Sammi starlet garnered praise for her acting skills, her movie choice could have been better. The film didn’t do well at the box office and was majorly criticised, especially for its story line. It seems like Mawra got unlucky with this project but might be open to future Bollywood films.
7) Imran Abbas
The Dil-e-Muztar star Imran Abbas made his Bollywood debut opposite Bipasha Basu in sci-fi film Creature 3D. The film failed miserably but Imran gave Bollywood another shot with 2016’s Jaanisar. However, that also didn’t impress. He last appeared in Ae Dil Hai Mushkil for a supporting role. – tribune