Egyptian actress Ghada Abdel Razek is a star of special kind who climbed the ranks of Egyptian cinema and TV series. She is one of the few female stars who lead the drama scene. Last Ramadan, she starred in the TV series “Telt Al-Talata”, and will present a new film to be released in Eid Al-Adha.
ï Tell us about the circumstances of the “Telt Al-Talata” series?
The story and script were written in an impressive way, and every scene in the series has value, and it cannot be deleted easily. It was shown to me a while ago and was ready for 30 episodes. But when this faltered and it was proposed to convert it into 15 episodes, it was merged and shortened, and we sat for a long time in order to adjust the script and adjust it so that it would come out well for the viewer and not affect the original story. But in the end, it is my first experience in the world of series, consisting of 15 episodes. Thank God, the series achieved success.
ï How did you prepare for this series, as you played three roles in the work?
I have been following writer Heba Al-Husseini as she wrote the series for nearly a year and a half. The series would have been postponed because we did not have enough time for filming it, but the producer suggested presenting it in a 15-episode format. I agreed and made a great effort until it came out to the audience in the best way. I worked for very long hours every day, and all those involved in the work made a great effort in order to present a distinguished work that would impress the audience. I am very keen to present works worthy of my name, my history, and what I have achieved over the course of my artistic career.
ï Were you worried about playing three characters in the series?
I am an actress and it is natural for me to play any role, and as long as this is at the heart of the work, it is very normal. I embody the personalities of Farah, Farida, and Faryal, who are identical twins in all their features, but each of them has a different style of speech and other details of their personality. The difficult challenge for me in the series was for the audience to differentiate between the three of them through my performance of each character and showing its different dimensions, and not through its formal features. This certainly required great effort and intense focus on the details and dimensions of each of the three characters.
ï Do you tend to play complex roles?
I love them because they are more difficult and challenge the actor. Its difficulty appears, for example, in the scenes that bring two characters together. Therefore, I was filming the dialogue of each of them, her expressions, and her emotions while she was looking at the other character, and you can say that I was talking to myself while looking into the void and imagining the reactions of the other character so that I could continue to embody the scene based on this, and then I would film the dialogue and reactions of the other character. This was difficult, tiring, and required intense focus.
ï Was the series affected because it was shortened to 15 episodes?
Shortening the series into 15 episodes forced us to remove many events from the work, which made me feel very sad. I was sad when I deleted many of the events of the series, because all of them were important dramatic scenes, and it took a long time to write them, and I had prepared them and all their details and events, but I was forced to do so.
ï What about changing the director?
Hassan Saleh, with whom I work for the first time, directed the series instead of Mohamed Hisham Al-Rashidi who apologized for personal reasons. Saleh was the appropriate director for the series, because he is the husband of the author and witnessed the whole experience. That is why Saleh did not need a long time to read the episodes of the series and know its details.
ï What are your criteria for choosing any artwork?
The most important thing for choosing any artwork is the script. Unfortunately, there are no longer writers who write the entire series before showing it to the artist. The writer now writes the idea, the treatment, and one or two episodes of the series only, and does not complete the writing until after the star approves of it and contracts for the work. If this does not happen, the writer does not complete the writing. As for the previous periods, the writer used to write the entire series and then present it to the director, and the director is the one who nominates suitable artists for the work. Unfortunately, this no longer exists, and I believe that this is one of the main reasons for the decline in the level of the series that are presented during the current periods.
ï Do you follow social media and how do you see its impact on artworks?
Social media has had a significant impact on the competition in the artistic arena between the works that are presented. And even more than that, it began to make stars out of nothing, without presenting any impressive artistic works. It makes stars before the audience even watches their work. I consider this stardom to be fake and unreal because true stardom is achieved by the artist through the audience’s reactions to the artworks he presents, and not from social media. There are also those who display the details of their personal lives on social media, and I completely reject this.
ï Your next film will be a comedy, what about it?
My next film “Al-Baqa’a L’il Asyaa” will be released on Eid Al-Adha. I am excited about this movie, as it is a new experience for me to present a comedy movie, along with two of the most important comedy stars, Ahmed Adam and Bayoumi Fouad. The film was directed by Sherif Ismail, with whom I work for the first time. I am very optimistic about this film. I was genuinely laughing at the set, playing the character “Hoda”, who works in a bank and has a friendship relation with Bayoumi Fouad and Ahmed Adam.