Fauziyya Hassan is one of the few prominent actresses with the longest acting career in Dhivehi films. As a kid, I was enchanted by her grace in the TV movie, Fidaa directed by Hussain Shihab, one of the pioneers in film making who inspired me then and keeps inspiring me now. Whenever we meet, we have these long, fruitful conversations that make time very annoyed. As for Fauziyya in Fidaa, which depicted a selfless sacrifice she makes, her performance in the song, Haalathu Adhu Mi Vanee, still, puts me in memory lane. By the way, this may sound far-fetched and may even receive harsh criticism, but deep inside my heart, I consider her Judi Dench of Dhivehi films.
To begin with, here’s a cool trivia about Fauziyya. She appears in almost all of my collaborations with director Abdul Fatthaah. Her first performance in a material that I have written was in the popular TV series, Hinithunvelaashey Kalaa, which consisted of 52 episodes and directed by Fatthaah. She played a depressed woman, one of the early serials that started dealing with this serious medical illness, who comes to term with her mental state and salvages herself and her relationship with her alienated daughter played by Mariyam Afeefa.
Fauziyya handled the psychological role with ease, and her portrayal of her depressed state to recovery was spellbinding. She still gives me chills in one of the earliest episodes where she desperately tries to beautify herself by applying lipstick on her and then suddenly she snaps, becomes mental and manically starts applying the lipstick all over her face and her reflection in the mirror. She gave an outstanding performance from start to finish throughout the series.
She was then cast in the Fatthaah produced National Award-winning melodrama, Vaa Loabi Engeynama, as a sympathetic mother who tries the best she can to put some sense into her son played by Yoosuf Shafeeu. In one of the pivotal scenes where she inspires her discouraged son to forgive his ex-wife, who raised a child of his without his knowledge, Fauziyya reflects on how she raised him. The scene stayed with her monologue, and the way she performed her scene, the delivery, the expressions instantly allowed the audience to travel to her past and experience the difficulty she went through raising her son all by herself. When she was offered the role, I knew it was in safe hands.
In 2007, she showed her funny side in the comedy miniseries, Aharenge Lha Daddy in which her husband happened to be a womaniser. The viewers praised the whole series. Fatthaah again directed it.
Ten years later, and for the past few years being entirely away from filmdom, she is back with a bang in the upcoming film, Hahdhu directed by, yes, Fatthaah. She is one of the brightest highlights of the film. She plays a proud mother whose life spiral into humiliation and aloofness when her daughter breaks the strongest bond she has for her.
In one of the pivotal and my favourite song in the film, Fatthaah did a shot of her especially to make me smile from ear to ear. In that shot alone, she showed all her years of acting experience. I was like OMG and my smile nearly unhinged my temporomandibular joint from my skull.
Hahdhu will be premiered on 06 September 2017 and tickets are now available from Olympus.