Egyptian actress Amina Khalil has carved out a place for herself among top young stars. Her latest 15- episode series, “Al-Harsha Al-Sabe’a”, achieved great success and trended on social media. The events of the series take place in a realistic, social, and human framework that discusses an important issue. Khalil always chooses her works carefully, and she doesn’t care if she is absent for some time, as long as she presents special works.
How do you see the reactions to the series Al-Harsha Al-Sabe’a?
I am very happy with the success of the series. I am completely satisfied with the work that we all worked hard on, and we devoted all our effort and time, all of us in front of and behind the camera, so that the work would be presented to the audience in a satisfactory manner. Praise be to God, all this effort was crowned with success and success. Exactly as you said, social media has been talking positively about the series all the time. The audience was discussing some of the events of the series because the series was talking about the situation of many, and this is the realism of presenting a work that discusses real-life problems that our society lives in.
Is this why you got excited about the series?
Yes, I got very excited because they are real problems that I started to notice when I was sitting with my married friends. My friends used to talk about their problems and the differences that occurred between them and their life partners in a sudden way, without introductions, for example, and suddenly there was an imbalance in the relationship and the family, and suddenly they said, “What happened?”
For the sake of this idea and its clarification, I was very excited about the series and discussed the writer, Maryam Naoum, because I felt that the problem was huge and should be discussed by an author who has a vision and deals with the subject differently. The director also had to be a very affectionate person, to be able to reflect the point of view on the part of men and women. This is because we did not want there to be a women’s series or show the woman’s point of view without caring about the man and reflecting the image of her as the weakest, and at the same time, not reflecting the image of the man as the strongest, we just wanted to have a balanced series that presents the binary point of view.
How did you prepare for the character of Nadine?
In the beginning, I completely forgot that I am Amina Khalil, and I sympathized with Nadine’s character very much and studied her social and psychological dimensions and her relationship with her husband, Adam. Nadine is a human being like other women. She used to sacrifice for the sake of her two children, and she is searching for her rights. For example, she used to comment a lot on Adam’s situations, for example when Adam tries to help her with anything she was commenting, and she makes him feel that he is not doing this thing properly. Perhaps motherhood is an instinct within us, but the man does not consider it from this angle, and when Adam said to her, “You only see the negative, I felt it and understood his point of view. Nadine is a character who always gives herself the right to judge people, and that is why I read the script well and studied all the details of the character. For information, when I watched the series after it was shown as Amina Khalil, I sympathized with Nadine at times, and at other times I did not sympathize with her.
The scene of the boy pushing you was a very strong and touching scene, and it contained feelings of motherhood… How did you present this scene?
All the mothers, who I spoke with, said almost the same sentence: “The first time you give birth, you feel that your heart has sprung out.” That was the joint feeling of mothers. I am not a mother in real life, so I do not know that feeling, but I understand it. Imagine a person you love that much pushes you, hits you, or tells you, “I hate you”. I was thinking of my nephew in this scene, and how I would react if he did that to me.
Why did the series have an open ending?
Because we saw that this is the best. They may get back together and then break up again, so the open ending was more realistic.
Do you feel that your series did not get enough recognition because it was aired in Ramadan?
On the contrary, the series’ viewership was very high, and I followed everything that was written about it and saw the audience’s interaction on social media.
Do you think that women have equal chances to men in cinema and television?
In fact, I see that there is a relative improvement, but women are still denied equal chance in Egyptian cinema. In the sixties and seventies, there were many films that starred women, such as Souad Hosni, Faten Hamama, Shadia, and others. I think the works written specifically for women are few now, whether in television or cinema.
Will there be a second part of the series?
I have no knowledge of making a second part or not, but I personally do not like the idea of parts, and it is preferable that the work be one part, and this story has many topics for discussion, and God knows if there may be a second part or not.
In your opinion, what are the main reasons for the failure of relationships?
There are many reasons, but the most important one is silence. Often, either side gets angry and doesn’t tell the other, so everyone leaves what’s inside them “under the rug” like dust. This is how life goes on with accumulations of negative feelings. Therefore, there must always be frankness between the two parties and a joint discussion and dialogue in which each party knows what is bothering the other, and that each party hears the other person because it is the accumulations that make the relations collapse.
How do you see social media? Do you get annoyed when you are criticized?
Of course, I get affected and we are all human. We all rejoice in praise and sometimes get upset, and get angry if the attack is inappropriate, but we must not be 100% affected, because if we find someone who doesn’t love us, we will find in return another who loves us, defends us, and stands behind us, it is not possible to please all people, the most important thing is that we please ourselves, and not everyone will love us or hate us.
You presented a project to support the Egyptian industry, but in a different way. Should the role of the artist not be limited to art only?
The role of the artist is to present meaningful art, a message, and a specific proposition even if it does not have a solution, but if he is able to support his country with something else with art, why not do so? I presented a project to support the Egyptian industry related to fashion and clothing with my colleague, fashion designer Rania Awad, and I selected 80 designers from all over Egypt who specialized in the fields of fashion, fashion and jewelry, presenting the best of what they produced during the year. I organized a fashion show for dresses of my design, and thank God we succeeded. Therefore, the role of the artist should not stop at presenting his talent only, but he must also encourage those with talent, and because I also specialize in the world of fashion and style, I loved supporting them, and for your information, all my clothes are Egyptian made.