The petite and charming Sonya Khan started off as a model, later becoming an anchor person and then graduated to acting. She was going great guns in her career when she suddenly disappeared for a year or so, giving rise to a lot of speculation.
Why the lean phase? “I disappeared for a few years because of personal reasons. I was not in Pakistan and had gone to the USA to live with my sister. I wanted a break from work and people, and to spend some time with myself. Aap ko kissi cheez se strings katnay hoon to it’s best to run away from it,” says Sonya today.
Sounds more like a matter of the heart rather than time-out. While her affair with the bhangra boy was well known at the time, recently came the news of her alleged relationship with another moon-faced crooner.
With a look of genuine surprise, she says, “Affairs? How many? I was seeing someone for a couple of years but he has moved on with his life and so have I. This new alleged affair is something really funny as we are just-a-call-away friends and nothing else. When I start seeing someone I will not hide it.”
In a male-dominated entertainment industry like ours it is said that for a single actress to survive in showbiz it is essential to attach her name with a man’s. “I have always been single and if it’s imperative to do it in order to get work then I don’t need it.
I am very happy the way I am living my life right now. I am focused on a couple of things and I think getting into relationships and that, too, with the wrong person can make your life a living hell. Maybe it is important for people who need exposure and want to be embroiled in controversy. I have never cut such a figure and never will.”
Shifting the focus from Sonya’s personal to professional life, was her comeback easy and more importantly, how does it feel to be second-time lucky? Her eyes light up like fireworks as she discusses her comeback. “It is very difficult to create your place again as I have experienced it, so I know what it takes to start all over again.
At the time I left I was doing pretty well in modelling and had a few acting assignments as well. When I got back, people said things like ‘we thought you would never come back again’. I am thankful to the Almighty that my second go at showbiz has been even better than the first. The truth is I have worked hard to be where I am today.
I didn’t have to go around asking for work. I just told them I was back. Everything happens for a reason and I am happy with the way things are right now. I would not say that I have made it big but I am in the process of getting there,” she says with a smile.
Work is now at the top of Sonya’s priority list who can be seen hosting the celebrity chat show, Sonya’s Lounge. “I’m busy with three other projects — two soaps Jo Baat Ghar Mein Hai and Sultanat and as the host of a challenging programme called Power Trip.
With the showbiz lot you kind of know everybody inside out so for me it’s very easy to interview them. But in Power Trip, it’s difficult to sit in front of people who have made remarkable achievements in life and are successful in their respective fields.”
With the opening up of cross-border media every other actor is jumping on the Indian bandwagon be it film or television. Does Sonya have any plans of hopping across the LoC? “I’m not interested right now and I have refused offers. Indian plays are basically soaps and the reason for my refusal arises from the fact that these soaps require a lot of time.
That means you pack your bags and go settle down in Bombay. But that again means putting things on hold here. If things eventually work out then great, but if they don’t then I’m dead. I have a life here I have my friends and my family. I can’t just leave things because I have to go work in India. On the other hand, if it’s a short Pakistan-Indian collaboration then I’m definitely on.”
‘I think getting into relationships and that, too, with the wrong person can make your life a living hell. Maybe it’s important for people who need exposure and want to be embroiled in controversy. I have never cut such a figure and I never will,’ says Sonya
So does it mean no to films as well? “I’m not the fimli type but then again every film doesn’t fall into the commercial category. I know how to find my way about and not do anything that will displease my family. But yes, if there is a tempting offer then maybe I’ll go for it.”
As for Sonya’s future plans, she says she has a couple of major things lined up which she doesn’t want to disclose right now. “I might take up production rather than direction as I don’t have the stamina to become a director.
Secondly, I’m a very short-tempered person. I blow up my fuse just like that (she snaps her fingers). At the moment, I have my hands full with acting. Also, there are always a lot of things waiting to happen so one should know how to go about them,” says Sonya.