"We are much stronger than we give ourselves credit for"
Bangladeshi actor and model Ziaul Faruq Apurba talked to Dhaka Tribune Showtime with regard to the taking part in a rendition of the classic Abar Jombe Mela, which is in essence a tribute to the people of Bangladesh and their incredible resilience amid the coronavirus pandemic. He, along with Rafiath Rashid Mithila and Zakia Bari Mamo are going to make appearances in the music video. Titled Biswa Obak Cheye Robe: Towards Hope, the song is a ZEE5 initiative in collaboration with Good Company – An Asiatic 360 Content concern. Composed by Raef Al Hasan Rafa and directed by Krishnendu Chattopadhyay, the song was released on May 13.
How has your life been since the lockdown?
I am keeping myself grounded. I have actually watched quite a number of films since everything came to a halt.
Are you working?
Yes, I am shooting from home. It has been a busy time.
How many of your dramas will be released on the upcoming Eid?
As far as I know, 28 or more.
That is a lot of dramas, no?
Well, these are extraordinary circumstances. You see, we have not made any Eid drama this year per se. Everything was shut down before we could get the camera rolling. These 28 dramas were intially meant for the occasion of Pohela Boishakh. Given the lockdown, their release subsequently got postponed. All of them are going to come out on Eid now.
When do you think you can revisit the sets?
Look, it might be possible even now to shoot with a small crew, who will adhere to all preventive measures from wearing masks to applying sanitizer. But we artists cannot possibly wear masks before the camera and that greatly puts our health in jeopardy. I cannot even do my make up without someone to help me. You see, this creative process requires a diverse group of people. I don’t see how it can be done in the midst of a pandemic.
I read, in India, they are thinking of shooting with doctors and nurses on set.
How does our future look like to you?
I think we are much stronger than we give ourselves credit for. I truly believe, things will go back to where they were. It will certainly take time. I might even need some time to getting used to shaking people's hands again. But one day, it will be just like dealing with a regular flu. We will be alright.
When coronavirus reached its culmination all over the world, I still remember how muddled all my thought were. We kept getting all kinds of instructions. Not knowing what we were dealing with was terrifying. Well, it still is. But now, we do have some ideas as to how to keep ourselves safe. It is still not anywhere near over, but if we keep fighting, the dawn’s not far.
Apart from this song, what else have you been doing?
Social work, participating in awareness campaigns, giving speeches to boost morale, trying to inspire people.. You see, I have friends who are slowly descending into the pits of depression amid the lockdown. There’s coronavirus, true. On the other hand, there is also sort of a mental virus gaining strength everyday. So it has been important to me to support my friends and, if possible, my followers as well.
Let us hope for the best. Stay home, stay safe.