Yumna Zaidi’s journey: From facing rejection to ruling the screens

Yumna Zaidi, a powerhouse actress of Pakistani Television is turning 30 next month. It is commendable to see how much the actress has achieved at such a young age. She is currently ruling the roost on the TV screens, while her contemporaries are prioritizing films over TV, Yumna believes in staying loyal to her roots and doesn’t want to disappoint her regular audience by shifting professional gears.

Born and brought up in  Lahore, the actress recently shifted base to Texas, and got the citizenship of the United States, despite this she prefers spending most of her time in Pakistan and investing more on her craft and her career.

Yumna Zaidi – a case of persistence

Not many people know this that Yumna holds a masters degree in Interior designing. She has also done Radio shows before foraying into acting. Yumna faced a lot of rejection in her initial days. She was discouraged by the people of the fraternity and many naysayers told her that she can never make it big. People told her that her height and looks are not what most A-listers should have but Yumna didn’t let that come in her way.  

It was the current heartthrob Affan Waheed who motivated her to pursue acting. Yumna debuted with a supporting role in the Saba Qamar starrer Thakan (2012) which was an ARY production. Yumna played a negative character of Mehak, in the play but she was clear about the fact that she wouldn’t get into any stereotypes and hence did versatile roles in her next plays.

The case of Yumna’s versatility

Yumna boasts of a stunning professional palette as she is one of the rare actresses of her generation to experiment with different genres, such as romance, thriller, socio-political, drama, suspense and even comedy. 

In a span of 7 years, Yumna has played path-breaking roles such as that of a tribal girl forced into marriage in Aap Ki Kaneez, an insecure cousin in Mausam, a rape victim in Dar Si Jati Hai Sila and a young widow in Pukaar.

Yumna’s breakthrough role was that of an adopted daughter, Aabroo in Khushi Ek Rog. She shunned her critics with a bonafide performance in the drama. Moreover, it is important to note that her role was completely different from her character in Thakan. In this play, she made everyone cry with her emotional nuances and innocent portrayal of a girl torn between her biological family and her parents who adopted her.

Yumna’s accolades, on-screen pairings, and more

Yumna is a standalone talent and has created her own niche in the industry. Her first acting nomination was for her outstanding performance in Nauman Ejaz and Saba Qamar starrer Ullu Baraye Farokht Nahi at Hum Awards (2014).

Yumna is a true trailblazer and has created her own league. The actress has also received nominations for her superlative performances in Rishtay Adhay Adhooray Se, Mausam, Jugnoo and Yeh Raha Dil. An interesting fact is this that Yumna is the only actress from her generation to receive acting nominations in three different categories that of Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress and Best Villain, a feat that indeed is commendable. 

Her finest on-screen pairings are with Zahid Ahmed, Ahmad Ali Akbar & Sami Khan.

Yumna revealed to Samina Peerzada on her show that she is a hopeless romantic and is still waiting for the man of her dreams. She is currently in a relationship with her career and intends to make the most out of her professional capabilities. The actress says that had she not been an actor, she would not have had any other career.

Yumna is currently enthralling the audiences with her spellbinding performance in Inkaar;  another great example of Yumna’s choice of genre for her dramas for the said serial highlights the issue of consent in relationships. Yumna will also be seen playing the other part of Zahid Ahmed’ split personlity in the upcoming drama Ishq Zah-e-Naseeb. We are looking forward to more memorable performances and authentic social portrayals by the most flourishing face of Pakistani Television.

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