Though Ahmed Shiban is a newcomer to Dhivehi films, in his debut in the upcoming film Hahdhu, in my humble opinion, he has done an admirable job with his character looking comfortable enough with two most demanding leading ladies of filmdom today. People may or may not be already rolling their sleeves to do an unsympathetic autopsy on him, I don’t know. But one thing I am so sure is that even if they cut him up six ways from Sunday, he will stand out by miles with his perfectly ripped body. But, is such a body alone enough for a leading man?
First, it’s always refreshing to see the protagonist with a killer body. When was the last time we have seen the central character sporting a washboard abs? I mean in any Dhivehi film for that matter? Zilch! That’s why I have this gut feeling that his chiselled body will be an instant hit especially with the female demography. I also expect few envious eyes. Kudos to director Abdul Faththaah for taking a worthy risk by casting him. He will surely gratify the audience.
I first met Shiban on my trip to R. Vaadhoo as I was invited to join the set of Hahdhu. Before that, I only saw him from the poster that was unveiled together with the launching of the film. Sadly, I was unable to attend that function. But he did make an impact with his first look.
I reached the island of Vaadhoo late that night. Director Fatthaah, had already wrapped up the shooting for the day. But he took me to the abode where the cast and crew were staying. Most were getting ready to hit the sack. When I was introduced to Shiban, first thing that crossed my mind was that if he was still in his character. He was quiet, spoke softly with few words accompanied by a coy smile just like Ali, the character he was playing in the film. Weirdly enough, he kind of reminded me of acting legend, Ismail Wajeeh, who has a similar peculiarity when he was on the set. I was very fortunate to work with Ismail for a TV drama directed by creative cinematographer, Mohamed Shiyaz.
The mannerism of Shiban made me very curious and impatient. I wanted to confirm if he stayed true to the character in the film. Without wasting time, I pleaded Fatthaah to show me the rough cut.
Watching Shiban’s scenes, I really felt his aloofness which was a predominant attribute of his character. And the scenes where he first meets Yusra, the character Mariyam Azxza Azxona plays, their chemistry sparking instantly was felt. With the proceeding scenes, it was a delight to watch their relationship grow so believably in a short span of time. It was very natural. Shiban was well supported by Azxa and he was spot on to exhibit Ali’s introvert character with minimal dialog.
Once their chemistry reached the boiling point, their intimate scenes automatically exploded. That’s when his abs came into full play. To have them were a bonus for him. Oh, how I wish six packs can be bought from a shop. On second thought, I just need five. I already have one whole big pack.
The tricky scenes for him are the unshot scenes of his with Aminath Rishfa. Those are his most demanding scenes since his character has somewhat come out of his shell. I wish him good luck in his remaining scenes. He has already won brownie points with the appealing song with her. I wish him a bright future in films.