Her debut film is inspired by the motorway rape case
Soon after the September 9 gang-rape of a woman on the Lahore-Sialkot Motorway, people began victim blaming and said the woman shouldn’t have left her house at night.
Director Abu Aleeha’s response to those people is his newest project Sheenogai.
The film has been written and directed by Abu Aleeha and stars newcomer Marina Syed, who rose to fame as a stunt biker.
She is a member of an all women biker club in Karachi called Rowdy Riders, where she teaches women how to ride motorcycles.
Her biking journey began in 2017, when she bought her first scooter on installments. She faced fierce opposition from her family, who sold the bike. She had to pay Rs30,000 to buy it back.
Syed then learnt to ride motorcycles without an instructor. “I have experienced so many physical injuries because no one taught me how to do it,” she told SAMAA Digital.
Five months later, she travelled from Karachi to Kashmir on a 200cc motorcycle. “When my confidence grew, I thought I should train other girls as well.”
So how did she reach the silver screen? According to Syed, one of her students was a make-up artist and recommended her name for the film.
“She told me that I just had to ride a motorcycle in the film,” Syed said, adding that she made it clear she didn’t know how to act. “I didn’t know what to do, but when I read the script, I realised that if I had to do it, I would have to understand the character,” she explained.
Abu Aleeha and the film crew worked tirelessly for a month to make Syed understand the intricacies of acting.
In this video, Syed talks in detail about her journey from biking to being a movie star.
Sheenogai will be released on December 18. The film’s title is the Pashto word for the ‘girl with the green eyes’. Other actors involved in the project include Aisha Faraz Rind, Kunwar Mudassir Shehzad, Ayaz Ali, and Bilawal Hussain.