Who commanded the No.1 position for Pakistani actresses at the turn of the century?

Which of Lollywood’s sultry sirens ruled the Roost in the first year of the second Millennium? Did Saima retain her position at the top of the ladder or did Reema turn the tables on her arch rival? Is Noor a serious threat or will she simply join the ranks?

One by one we take a retrospective look at how the leading ladies of Lollywood fared in the year 2000:

RESHAM: 2000 wasn’t a lucky year for this Syed Noor discovery. 4 of her films were released including her Punjabi debut film, Reshman – but it flopped badly. Resham had been relying on the film to “break” her into the Lahore circuit which has been ruled by Saima, but the films miserable Box Office performance put paid to any such aspirations. Her second Punjabi film Ek Dhee Punjab Di also flopped. Her Urdu film Kahan hae Kanoon also failed badly but in Barood she managed to make some waves. Her market value at the moment is Rs. 2 lac per film and she is firmly in the Syed Noor camp – for the time being at any rate.

REEMA: Managed to maintain her position in the top flight with 10 releases of which a few managed to do quite well. Mujhe Chand Chahiye, Khuda ke Chor and Billo 420 all did well at the Box Office. Reema’s short role in Mujhe Chand Chahiye was loved by the masses as was her turn as Billo in Billo 420. Reema also suffered some big flops along the way such as Lounge Da Lashkara, Banarsi Chor, Pasand and Yar Badhsah – but it didn’t seem to dent her Box Office position which remains rock steady. In Sind she is as popular as Saima – but over all has to settle for second place. Reema collects a cool Rs. 4 lac per movie these days.

NARGIS: Appeared in no less than a dozen movies but is what they call “C class” heroine who takes on roles when she is often the third lead. Of her more successful films is the Smash hit Ishathari Gujjar and Billo 420 as well as the recent Jug Wala Mela. She remains ever popular in the Punjab but virtually unknown in the Sind circuit. She demands Rs. 1.5 per movie.

ANJUMAN: She started the year off with a bang as Chaudrani hit the spot. But Jug Mahi did only average business and the subsequent releases – Peengan, Jatti Da Veer, Ek Dhee Punjab Di – failed miserably. Her comeback trail came to a shuddering halt as producers raced to axe her from their productions. She has no market value left and people refuse to cast her for even 2 lacs. In a fit of depression quit the industry and indeed the country and currently resides in the UK where she is planning on setting up an Academy to teach acting and dancing.

KHUSHBOO: Another of the “C class” heroines who can’t seem to rise a notch or two despite their best efforts. 2000 was the year in which she was only noticed for her “scandal” with Arbaz Khan. Her fee of Rs. 1 lac per film may about to be deflated unless she gets a grip of her career really soon.

NIRMA: Didn’t have much to smile about in 2000 though Mehndi Waley Hath was a hit and gave her some much needed exposure. She was despised by the public in No Paisa, No Problem but still manages to command Rs. 2 lac per movie and has the distinction of being one of the few educated heroines on the scene.

NOOR: Had a brilliant start to the year with Ghar Kab Aao Gay and Mujhe Chand Chahiye, then she made some bad errors of judgement appearing in some “C class” movies that only blotted her CV. She demands Rs. 2 lac her role and is in serious threat of being upstaged by Zara Shaikh – the Tere Pyar Main girl – as producers are growing weary of the moronic Noor.

MEERA: had an average year but certainly made an impression among a bevy of leading ladies in Ghar Kab Aao Gay. Her hopes are pinned largely on Rukhsati and Khoye ho tum Kahan and she demands a fee of Rs. 3 lacs per movie.

SANA: Was the busiest actress of the year with over 20 releases to her credit. She has yet to command a solo heroine status but all the signs are that she is growing in confidence as well as the gaining the publics acceptance. She is the youngest of the current heroines with a bright future. At the moment she commands a 2.5 lac fee, but this is going to be going up without much doubt.

SAIMA: Reigned supreme despite a number of stinging flops. To her credit was Mehndi Walay Hath in which she turned in a stunning performance. The film is still running in Punjab in regular shows and proves Saima’s mass appeal. She commands a whopping 6 lacs per movie and is reported to be jacking up her fee any day now…. naturally on the advice of Syed Noor.