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‘Habs’ star Janice Tessa opens up on ‘colourism’ in industry

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‘Habs’ star Janice Tessa opens up on ‘colourism’ in industry
The showbiz newbie, Janice Tessa, of ‘Habs’, opened up on facing colourism in the industry.

In one of the latest interviews with a digital media outlet, TikTok star turned actor Tessa who rose to fame with her portrayal of Zoya in ‘Habs’, weighed upon her experience of prevailing colourism in the showbiz industry and revealed being bullied to date over the colour of her skin.

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Upon being asked about the issues she faced due to her complexion, Tessa told the interviewer that there haven’t been ‘some issues’ but ‘way too many’. She continued, “I’m being bullied since my school.”


“There were some people, I wouldn’t name them, but if you want to bag a lead role [in a project], you have to have fair skin,” Tessa recalled being told by people. “It wasn’t just one person who said this to me, there were so many people who had the same reason.”

Tessa further expressed her dismay over the viewers who write mean remarks about her skin colour in the comments section on social media. She addressed the keyboard warriors saying, “You have every right to criticise, [like] ‘I’m not acting well, I don’t have better dialogue delivery’, I will try and improve myself.”

“But if you are saying, ‘Oh, remove this ‘kaali’ from the scene, I don’t like this ‘kaali’, why have you cast this ‘kaali’?’ People have labelled me as ‘kaali’.”

“It’s just a character. Some might like it, some might not. The difference of opinion is completely fine. But you are being personal right there.”

Moreover, Tessa stated that though she is quite ‘strong-headed’ in general, and is least bothered by trolls, everyone is bound to have a breaking point.

“I still never let myself be demotivated. Because I have also received an ample amount of love from the same audience. I would rather look at the support, rather than the hate.”

About the drama, Janice Tessa essays Zoya in ‘Habs’ – the youngest sister to lead protagonist Ayesha (Ushna Shah).

Actor-director Musaddiq Malek has helmed the direction of the project, which stars A-listers Feroze Khan and Ushna Shah in lead roles, along with Ayesha Omar, Saba Faisal, Hina Rizvi, Isra Ghazal, Javed Sheikh, and Imran Aslam.

‘Habs’ airs in prime time every Tuesday on ARY Digital.

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