Posts Tagged ‘Arts and Entertainment’
Aliza Vellani is no stranger within the Canadian entertainment industry.Particularly, the actress is well known for her role as the teenaged character of Layla Siddiqui on CBC’S hit sitcom,Little Mosque on the Prairie.
With Little Mosque having been off the air for nearly 2 years and Aliza continuing to explore pursuits within the Canadian entertainment industry , I thought it’s a great time to connect with the delightful actress.
Particularly we discuss Little Mosque’s impact, her reflections on portraying the character of Layla as well as the series finale and much more! We also discuss the actress’ role on CTV’S Motive in the show’s upcoming second season which is scheduled to debut in summer 2014.
Read through the complete interview with Aliza Vellani below and share your thoughts on it in the comments section.
Abbas Karimjee:How do you think both Little Mosque and specifically the character of Layla will be remembered as?
Aliza Vellani:I think Layla will be remembered as a loveable Muslim teenager. A young girl, who simply goes through the everyday struggles of discovering her own identity. Layla had the added challenge of finding a balance between her family values and the values of the community at large. I think this is something all teenagers can relate to and it makes Layla a charming character to remember.
AK: Little Mosque on the Prairie aimed to dispel stereotypes about Muslims and help bring light to the way in which we are all similar regardless of our cultural or religious differences. To what extent do you think the show was successful in achieving this goal and essentially how do you think it changed how the mainstream society perceives Muslims?
AV:Little Mosque on the Prairie was remarkable as it served to educate its audiences on Islamic culture and practices in a humourous and family friendly setting. In doing so it tried to dispel those stereotypes by using them as a source of laughter. In a wonderful ‘laugh at yourself’ style.
AK:Little Mosque was the first of its kind, in terms of a show which used comedy to showcase Muslims in a positive light. How do you think the fact that CBC dared to feature the show, reflects Canadian culture?
AV:I think it reflects Canadian culture in a very positive light. CBC tackled sensitive and potentially controversial issues in a great way. It demonstrated multiculturalism and acceptance as a work in progress not just in Canada but around the world.
AK:When we last saw Layla in the series finale, she informed her father, Baber [Manoj Sood] that she had decided to pursue acting instead of going to medical school. Although the show is no longer on the air, what was your reaction to Layla’s decision and how do you envision her future?
AV:In many ways, I saw a big part of myself in Layla. It made the ending so special to me because it reflected my own pursuit in life. I like to imagine that Layla still manages to drive her Dad crazy with her choices in life and yet give him memories to cherish. I believe the healthy tug of war between Baber and Layla continues in every loving household as young girls explore their options in life with Daddy on guard.
AK:How has working on Little Mosque impacted both your career and your personal life?
AV:Being on Little Mosque on the Prairie was the most amazing experience. The best training one can get is through experience. I was so lucky that Little Mosque presented itself to me at such a young age. I was also very lucky to be able to work with several seasoned performers. They remain my mentors and I consider them part of my family. I really grew up on that show and it felt like a wonderful chapter in my life ended with the series. Little Mosque on the Prairie gave me more than I ever could have hoped and I will always be grateful for that.
Let us discuss your role on CTV’S Motive.
AK: What character do you portray and how many episodes do you appear in?
AV:I play a doctor named Dr. Gita Ambreen in the eighth episode of Motive’s second season.
AK:Lets discuss how you were appointed to the role of Dr.Ambreen. Were you contacted or did you audition? Could you please walk us through this initial process?
AV:My agent, Emilio Salituro from Muse Artist Management, had contacted me with the audition a couple of days before the taping. Luckily, I was able to audition between classes at SFU.
AK: What can you tell us about Dr.Gita Ambreen? Could you please describe her personality and perhaps how it differs from Layla’s?
AV:Layla was a teenager in the series while Dr. Gita Ambreen is both an adult and a doctor. Dr. Ambreen is a naturally professional character. She follows protocol. On the other hand Layla, was a charming but rebellious teenager.
AK:Portraying a role in a crime series can have a more serious and darker tone than a comedy series such as Little Mosque on the Prairie. What challenges were involved in adjusting to working on a darker, more serious show? Which type of genre do you prefer working in?
AV:A comedy is very light hearted while a crime series is quite serious reflecting high stakes. I loved working in comedy, but being part of a crime genre was new and extremely exciting. It is definitely a genre that I would love to do more of.
AK:Did you have to do research to portray the role of a doctor? If so, could you please walk us through this process?
AV:Much of the dialogue in the scenes was fairly straightforward so there wasn’t much I had to research. Of course an important part in preparing for a scene is making sure you know exactly what you are talking about. I had to make sure I truly understood what I was saying, and knew how Dr. Gita Ambreen contributed to the events that occurred.
AK:Motive is a series where investigators try to look at who committed a murder by looking at what the motive of the crime is and based on that, who may have committed the crime. Without giving too much away, how does your character support the storyline of the episode in which you appear?
AV:Dr. Ambreen plays a small role in furthering the investigation when Detectives Vega and Flynn follow a lead in the case.
AK:Though you only worked on Motive for one episode, are there any favourite memories either onscreen or off screen which you would like to share with viewers?
AV:Working on Motive was a wonderful experience. It was great getting to know the other cast and crew on the show between takes on set. My favourite moments on set seem to occur when the unexpected happens. As I was playing a doctor, I was given a pager to attach to my belt during the scene. As we began to run the scene, my pager goes off in the middle of the scene. It was an unexpected surprise.
Lets discuss your career in general.
AK:You recently completed studying Theatre at the Simon Fraser University. Congratulations! How does it feel and what aspirations do you have for your acting career at this point?
AV:Thanks Abbas! It is such a relief to have completed my university degree but also very scary as I enter yet another new and unknown chapter in my life. As an actor, you are constantly in training to strengthen your skills but this will be the first time I will be pursuing acting without being a fulltime student. I think at this point in my career, anything is possible. I am very excited to put all of my efforts into being an actor and working hard to achieve that goal.
AK: You have led a distinguished career, having developed a fair bit of prominence within the Canadian entertainment industry. What advice do you have for youth who are interested in pursuing a career in acting or in the arts, in general?
AV:Thank you again. That is so kind of you to say Abbas. Hopefully this is just the beginning. It takes so much to pursue your passion and it is something I think everyone should do no matter what the obstacles. In pursuing acting as a career, I think my advice for youth would be to always try and have fun. The reason you pursue your passion is because you want enjoy what you do every day. If you lose that, what’s the point? Never forget to enjoy yourself, even when auditioning. In my mind, auditioning is just as much a part of the job description.
AK:Do you have a message for fans who have been following your career?
AV:I would like to say thank you for all the support I have been given so far, and I hope you will continue to enjoy the work I do in the future. It has been an amazing journey so far and I cannot wait for what lies ahead.
Every week until the season 3 premiere of Mr. D on February 24 @ 9:00pm, CBC will be releasing a webisode of “Jimmy Get Out” .The short online episodes cover the variety of escapades which the character of Jimmy undertakes after he routinely gets kicked out of class by his teacher, Gerry Dee.
See this week’s episode below to see how Gerry assists Trudy in the office during his time out from class and share your response to this week’s clip in the comments section!
Take a look through the official synopsis and promo for this week’s episode of The Office entitled Andy’s Ancestry below!Be sure to tune in for the episode on Thursday, October 4 @ 9.00pm eastern standard time on NBC.
Andy flaunts his genealogy when he discovers he’s related to Michelle Obama. Meanwhile, Darryl struggles in his new post; Dwight teaches Erin a new language to wow her boyfriend’s family; and Nellie tries to persuade Pam that Jim’s having an affair.
How will Darryl attempt to cope with the difficulties of his new post and will he be successful in the end ?How will Nellie’s suggestions impact Pam’s faith in Jim and therefore her behaviour towards him?How will she respond when she discovers that the actual secret is that Jim pursued a business opportunity without consulting her? How will Erin acquaint with Andy’s educated and over achieving family? Share your speculations and predictions in the comments section, below.
Indeed, ABC released its premiere schedule earlier this week as reported on TV Guide.
According to the report,the fourth season of Modern Family shall debut on Wednesday, September 26 @ 9;00pm eastern time immediately following the one hour premiere of The Middle.
Refer to our most recent report on what is in store for the coming season @http://abbaskarimjeeweblog.com/2012/07/27/modern-family-producers-reveal-scoops-on-season-4/
Viewers of Little Mosque on the Prairie should be excited to discover that the fifth season of the sitcom is now available for purchase through CBC’S Online Shop for a current sale price of $25:99[CA]
The fifth season of Little Mosque on the Prairie, which initially aired from January 2011- March 2011 featured Amaar [Zaib Shaikh]and Rayyan’s [Sitara Hewitt]relationship as an engaged couple and the challenges involved in the two’s relationship which was observed in accordance to the Islamic faith,leading up to the much anticipated wedding. Meanwhile Reverend William Thorne[ Brandon Firla] attempts to reform and build positive relationships in the community in various ways, including one of a romantic nature with the town’s librarian, Rose. The season also brought forth special guest appearances by cast members from earlier seasons including Derek McGrath[ Reverend Duncan Magee] , Carlo Rota[ Yasir Hammoudi] and Aliza Vellani[ Layla Siddiqui].
The 2 disc DVD set features all 14 episodes as well as a bonus blooper. Additional features have been listed below, as seen on CBC’S Online Shop.Shipping is typically expected within 3-4 days, however may vary somewhat depending on factors such as location .
- Closed Captioned
- 16:9 Widescreen
- 5.1 Dolby Digital
- Region 0
Will you be purchasing the fifth season of the show? Should you be watching for the first time, which particular story element are you the most excited to see unfold? Share your response in the comments section, below.
With the new season of ABC’S ,Modern Family under production producer Steven Levitan has revealed some details about the forthcoming season.
According to a recent report from TV Guide , the fourth season will start off with Gloria[Sofia Vergara] revealing her pregnancy to the family , to which Mitchell [ Jesse Tyler Ferguson]and Claire[ Julie Bowen] will respond negatively as a result of their lack of desire to have another step sibling.
However, it seem the show’s characters are not the only ones to express surprise at the news. According to the report, the child cast members of the show were unaware of Gloria’s pregnancy until the season finale aired. Nolan Gould [ Luke] commented on his reaction and the circumstances behind how the storyline was kept a surprise stating that”They didn’t tell any of us it was happening,” reveals Gould. “It wasn’t in the script. They filmed Sofia with one camera guy, one sound guy and one hair and makeup guy. I didn’t find out until I watched it.”
“I didn’t know about it,” expressed Rico Rodriguez [ Manny]. “It was a surprise! And I was there when she was filming it!” he said, before dishing on what kind of sib he’d like for his character. “I’d probably want him to take after Manny so I can teach him how to make espressos! Make coffee, how to dress properly, how to write to girls.”
While this development may be brief, it raised many questions regarding the reactions of the other characters to Gloria’s pregnancy. How will Manny respond to the prospect of having to share his mother with a sibling given the two’s close relationship? What will Jay’s response be given how he expressed how he was to old to handle children in the finale? What comical situations will arise from the modern scenario of having Jay raising a child at his age? How will Mitchel and Claire’s disapproval be interpreted by Gloria and what particulates tensions may arise? How will Lilly respond to somewhat less attention from the extended family, with the arrival of a new baby?
How do you feel about the pregnancy storyline?
Share your response, speculations, predictions, and/ or questions in the comments section below!
Only 5 episodes left!Tune in for a new episode of Little Mosque tonight @ 8:30pm eastern time on CBC!
Amaar tries to get the town to support his new Mosque, but finds only disinterest and some outright derision when he reveals that his divine inspiration came from a chicken. Meanwhile, Baber is determined to prove the town isn’t ready for a new mosque by trying to get himself arrested. Sarah has a crisis of faith and considers eating bacon, while Ann suffers a crisis of love while sexting the now absent Charles Thorne.[CBC]
Will Amaar manage to convince others of the supposed validity of his plan? Does Baber’s behaviour seem uncharacteristic, given that he was initially opposed to having the mosque in a church? Has his friendship with Thorne impacted his position on the mosque being in a church? How will Baber’s arrest impact the relations between Mercy’s Muslim community and the general population?
How will Sarah respond to her current crisis and to what extent has her divorce impacted this change in behavior? What will become of Ann’s relationship with Charles Thorne, given that he is to be engaged?When do you think the fate of this affair yet surprising discovery of true love will be established?
Share your thoughts and speculations in the comments section below!
Peter Keleghan will reappear as his character in one more episode
http://abbaskarimjeeweblog.com/2012/02/06/little-mosque-on-the-prairies-debra-mcgrath-discusses-the-shows-final-season/[ Interview with Debra McGrath]
Tune in for a new episode of Little Mosque on the Prairie, entitled The Dating Game@ 8:30pm eastern time
Amaar needs Baber and Thorne’s cooperation to win a coveted Multi-Faith Award, but Baber and Thorne try to cut Amaar out when they discover the award comes with a cash prize. Meanwhile, Ann sets Sarah up on the worst first-date of her life, which leads to the worst second-date of her life. And Nate and Fatima team up to make a multi-ethnic sandwich[CBC]
What will be Amaar’s response be to the two’s attempt to have him removed from the situation? Given Amaar’s more liberal approach to multifaith events, how will Thorne and Baber’s more consrvative and narrow mimded attutudes affect their ability to win? What prompts Nate and Fatema to make a multi sandwich and how will this turn out?Share your speculations in the comments section and be sure to tune in.