Birthday: 18 May, 1980
Marital Status: Married to Ayesha Fazili, has a son Azaan Zafar.
Trivia: Ali Zafar made his first comic at the age of 8.
Ali Zafar is a Pakistani model, actor, composer, artist and singer-songwriter. He was born in Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan in a Punjabi family. His parents were Mohammad Zafarullah and Kanwal Ameen, both professors at the University of Punjab, Pakistan. He began his schooling at C.A.A. until 5th standard and excelled in his studies. He then moved to Beaconhouse School where he topped in his matriculate examinations in 1996. He then joined Government College University, where he completed his F.A. in Arts as the class of 1998. Zafar made his first comic book at the age of eight. Early in his career, he worked as a sketch artist at Pearl Continental Hotel in Lahore. After that, Ali pursued his childhood love for painting and went to the “National College of Arts”, from where he graduated with honors in 2002. Hence, completing his education.
Zafar married his long-time fiancee Ayesha Fazli (paternally related to Indian actor Aamir Khan) in an Islamic wedding ceremonyon 28 July 2009 in Lahore, Pakistan. On 6 March 2010, he became a father to a baby boy, whom he named Azaan Zafar.
Ali Zafar made his debut as a musician with the album Huqa Pani, released in Pakistan in 2003 and worldwide in 2005. The album was an instant hit, selling over 600,000 copies worldwide and winning several major awards and nominations. It also put him into the league of the most popular artists ever to have come out of Pakistan with a massive fan following locally and internationally. With time he proved to be perhaps one of the most versatile singer in the modern generation with a distinct vocal tone and qualities, specially during his folk and Sufi renditions in the “Coke Studio (Pakistan)”, where he surprised his audiences with live renditions of difficult notes with much ease and ranging his singing from pop to folk to semi-classical. His new songs, namely “Allah Hu”, “Yaar Dhadhi Ishq” (a cover), “Nahin Ray Nahin” and “Daastan-e-Ishq”, won the hearts of millions all over the world once again and earned him a new era of fan following.
He won the award for “Best Album” category at the Lux Style Awards in 2004 for his massive hit album Huqa Pani and also the “Best Male Artist” at the 2008 MTV awards. In addition to the album’s popularity being reflected in the music stores and by critics, it has been widely claimed that Himesh Reshammiya copied one of the most well-known tracks from the album, “Rangeen”, for his song “Dillagi Mein Jo”. Soon Pritam too copied his track “Channo” as “Chori ki Baatein” in the film Fight Club. Zafar launched his second album “Masty” nationwide in November 2006. He has since released four videos from the album, titled “Masty”, “Sajania”, “Dekha” and “Aasmaan”, which again went to become a big hit and the audience loved it a lot.
He released his third video of the single “Dekha”, from his second album, which was the most expensive music video of Pakistan, costing more than ten million rupees. The video was shot in Malaysia, produced by the Lux Company, and had the Pakistani actress-models Reema Khan, Meera, and Amina Haq starring in it. Zafar also won the “Youth Icon” award in the Lux Style Awards 2007, in Malaysia.
Besides being a singer, painter, model and an actor, Zafar also produced and directed his music video “Ek Pal” from his first album Huqa Pani. His song “Dekha” from his album Masty was part of the soundtrack of the American film Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, which was released on 24 September 2010. He is the fourth Pakistani artist after Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Strings and Atif Aslam to have a song(s) featured in an American film.
On 14 February, Zafar released his third album, which was much different from his earlier works consisting of Sufi semi-classical rendition of folk and Sufi verses fused with modern instruments. It also included renditions from Coke studio and Ghazals from Mirza Ghalib. This time Zafar seemed more mature and thoughtful in his approach to music, revealing a more serious side to his personality and music. Tracks such as the title track “Jhoom”, “Jee Dhoondta Hai”, “Koi Umeed” and “Jaane-e-Man” had a timeless feel to them and earned him further respect and popularity in the field of serious music listening.
Zafar also became the first of sorts to have rendered his services as an actor, singer, composer, lyricist, writer, arranger, programmer, recordist for his recent film London, Paris, New York. Amongst the popular tracks from the album are the title track “London, Paris, New York”, “Voh Dekhnay Mein”, “Thehree Si Zindagee” and “Ting Rang”. Now Zafar is working on the music of his next venture Total Siyappa, as the music director. Also by the end of 2013, his fourth album is releasing.
Ali Zafar’s first experience in acting was in Pakistani television drama’s before becoming one of the most popular singer of this generation in Pakistan. He acted in dramas like Kanch Ke Par, miniseries Kollege Jeans and etc. After becoming a music sensation in Pakistan and beyond, he got an offer for the role of Sarmad in Khuda Kay Liye a film by Shoaib Mansoor released in 2007 which he accepted, but was not able to sign it due to some personal reasons. The role was then performed by Fawad Afzal Khan.
After few years of hiatus from acting apart from in his own videos, Ali yet again set a precedent by being the first ever Pakistani star/singer to be featured as a solo main lead in his debut movie, a Bollywood movie namely Tere Bin Laden, directed by Abhishek Sharma which was a success both critically and commercially. Tere Bin Laden released on 16 July 2010 and was a major hit in India for a low budget movie but was not allowed to be released in Pakistan by the film censor board. He got nominated for IIFA Awards, Screen Awards, Zee Cine Awards and Filmfare Awards of 2011 in the Best Male Debut category. He was also the first Pakistani to be called to Indian Film Festival at Australia in March 2011 for his movie screening.
Zafar with Salman Khan in Dubai. Ali Zafar’s second flick was the YRF romantic teen comedy Luv Ka The End, he only made a special appearance.
Ali Zafar who took up movies as a serious career after his debut film has proved himself once again with his third film under Yash Raj Films, banner Mere Brother Ki Dulhan, directed and written by Ali Abbas Zafar and produced by Aditya Chopra. Mere Brother Ki Dulhan. Released on 9 September, the film was both critically acclaimed and a commercial success like his first film. Ali’s performance was specially praised by the industry. The film also stars Imran Khan and Katrina Kaif.
In 2012, Zafar starred in London, Paris, New York, which also received great critical acclaim as well as impressive overseas revenue, but didn’t manage to perform very well at the Indian box office. Apart from acting as male protagonist in films, he is also heavily involved in the music of the films he stars in. In 2012, he received Dadasaheb Phalke Academy Awards in a ceremony held in India, for Best New Talent-Male and also got Superstar of tomorrow in Stardust Awards for his performance in Mere Brother Ki Dulhan.
His fifth movie was Chashme Baddoor (2013), a romantic adult-comedy film directed by David Dhawan, which was declared a box office super hit, adding another commercial success to Zafar’s filmography. In 2014, Ali is set to star in multiple films, with the first being Total Siyappa, a romantic comedy, which is expected to release on 7th March 2014. He is currently filming for other films also, such as Kill Dil and a cameo appearance in Tere Bin Laden 2 (the sequel to Tere Bin Laden).