Popular TV show Diriliş: Ertuğrul became the subject of debate once again after actor Yasir Hussain had voiced his concerns about airing foreign content on state television, a few days ago. Hussain believes that such a move can have detrimental consequences for the local industry. While some members of the showbiz fraternity backed Hussain, others disagreed with him.

Belonging to the latter, actor Osman Khalid Butt reminded everyone that Turkish TV shows are being aired in the country on prime time slots since a long while, arguing that the local industry remained largely unaffected then.

“Whoa, Ertugrul has really stirred the proverbial pot, hasn’t it? It’s almost as though there’s no precedent of a Turkish show gaining immense popularity in Pakistan before,” he said.

The Balu Mahi actor went on to disregard the notion of local jobs in the entertainment industry being impacted severely, as a result, “I don’t recall us actors finding ourselves jobless when Ishq-e-Mamnoon or Mera Sultan were all the rage in Pakistan. Nor did Turkish actors ‘infiltrate’ the local industry and replace us.”

Furthermore, Butt asserted that importing such shows is infact creating a new set of jobs for local artists and technicians. ” Isn’t this creating more job opportunities for local dubbing/VO artists?
Also: praising a show like Ertugrul that promotes the importance of religion, culture and customs with nuance doesn’t automatically mean one doesn’t support the local industry,” he said.

At the same, the actor maintained that he would also love that one day Pakistan could create shows of such magnitude. “Of course, I’d love it if our national television uses the revenue generated from this series to create our own original content – shows that can rival Ertugrul in the narrative if not in scale, and showcase our own historical events,” he said.

Meanwhil actor Mehwish Hayat in the midst of this debate has come out to praise the show for its content. ” I don’t know what the fuss is all abt? At the end of the day lets accept Dirilis #Ertugrul for what it is; an educational drama series that has historical significance and great moral lessons. I think Engin Altan Düzyatan is pretty hot. A bit like Leonardo Di Caprio no?” she said.

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