Bilal Abbass Khan’s big eyes widen as he looks up to Sajal Aly in drama serial O Rangreza (2018), on premier entertainment channel HUM TV, as she flings multi coloured dye powders on him. A large camera zooms in on his face, coated in a thin layer of pink colour, as he positions his hand to avoid the contact of colours with his eyes. It’s a two shot, that just stays on them and you stay with them. The scene was done so naturally and the chemistry between Sajal and Bilal was so strong that it earned them Best on Screen Couple trophy at recent Hum Awards 2018.
No, the actor known for his role in O Rangreza isn’t some sort of celebrity hacker or inveterate snoop. Bilal is absurdly good-looking, and has the kind of movie-star looks and these looks-coupled with an easy-going charisma-have served Bilal well in his short but rapidly accelerating career. His career is a ‘roller coaster that only goes up,’ to borrow from Rafay Rashidi, that brought us Bilal Abbas Khan’s breakout role of Party Khan, a taboo-ridden drug addict, in Pakistani film Thora Jee Le (2017) that was not-so-appreciated flick and earned significant wrath from critics. Having picked up positive reviews for his particular role in the film, Bilal is perhaps the best thing to have come out of Thora Jee Le. 
Before Bilal played a significant part in drama serial Dumpukht (2016), alongside Noman Ijaz, on entertainment channel A-Plus, and Jamal in critically acclaimed Qurban (2018), opposite to Iqra Aziz, on entertainment channel ARY Digital, he was just a young business graduate with formal training in acting, hoping to make it big in Pakistan entertainment industry. And as it turns out, initial setbacks paved the way for his major success later on.
“My first – and only – feature film, Thora Jee Le, did not do well at the box office, and neither was it critically well received. Its failure disheartened me, but I chose to bounce back, fairly in a matter of no time. I don’t think that a flop project can hold me down for a long time. It’s a project by project industry, so one has to learn and tune themselves and take it as it comes,” says Bilal.
Being his college mate, I still see him as a composed, shy and silent senior, which he certainly was, back then. Didn’t see him performing on stage during that time. I ask Bilal if acting was something he always wanted to do or did it just happen along the way, as a matter of fair luck. He says, “Ever since I was a kid I knew this is what I wanted to do, of course I did face a lot of hindrances, but it was my dad who supported me through all of it. Even now he’s still my biggest support system.” 
Describing the aftermath of his first television gig, Bilal says, “My first project was Khush Haal Sasural, on entertainment channel ARY Zindagi. It was a soap. But, later Dumpukht with Kashif Nisar got me noticed and garnered a lot of appreciation. That’s when I thought I’ve done it.” 
The 26-year-old who’s having a very successful year with television dramas, have always shared the screen space with relatively established actors, from Sajal Aly to Iqra Aziz and Samina Pirzada. On talking about his experience of working with experienced talent, Bilal says, “I feel really privileged to have worked with such great actors especially a legend like Samina Pirzada. When you work with such accomplished actors, you get to see a lot of new horizons that you can explore. Also, the inspirations you get from them makes you bring the best out of you,” He adds, “I personally feel that we learn from every person we share the screen with. Working with such talented artistes of course adds to a challenge for me, to prove my acting prowess and not let the team down.”
On talking about the Pakistani film industry that has seen a bit of a revival lately, Bilal believes it still has to go a long way to make its mark with international appeal. “I believe Pakistani cinema has a lot of potential and I see our films screened across the borders, slowly building a market for itself. But right now we a have a long way to go. It’s still fairly a new industry,” says Khan. 
Bilal is currently shooting for a thriller mystery drama Cheekh. The star cast includes Saba Qamar, Aijaaz Aslam, Maira Khan and Azekah Daniel. So, amidst all this action in life. How does he find inner peace? “I think my family and friends are my biggest strength. My family has been incredibly supportive and none of my friendships have changed over the course of all my high and lows, I feel that’s where my real power lies. And when you have such gems around you, you have peace within you,” says Bilal Abbas Khan, as he returns back to shooting his scenes on set.
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