|Alma mater||Franklin Marshall College|
|Occupation||Actor, visual director|
Bilal Ashraf (Urdu: بلال اشرف) is a Pakistani film actor and visual effects director. After studying visual effects from the Franklin Marshall College, he started his career as a visual effects director and then pursued his career in acting after making a brief appearance in the 2014 acclaimed thriller O21. Ashraf then starred as an army officer in another acclaimed war drama, Yalgaar in 2017.
Early life and education
Ashraf received his early education from St. Michaels Convent School in Karachi. He studied visual effects direction at Franklin & Marshall College in Pennsylvania, United States. He did a double major in finance and arts. Later he went to Escape Studios in London to learn animation. He claims to have ten years of experience behind the camera.
He initially worked as a hedge consultant in New York but he later quit his job and moved to London in order to study animation and visual effects on the insistence of his late sister, Sadia Ashraf, a director as well as a teacher of filmmaking at the New York University, who wanted to improve Pakistan's cinema and with whom he created Radical Films. She is the reason he decided to become an actor.
He has named Pink Floyd as his all-time favourite band, has chosen Scent of a Woman as the movie which pushed him to become an actor while he also described sculpting and painting as his "hidden talents."
Ashraf made a cameo appearance in the 2014 thriller film O21. In 2016, Ashraf made his lead acting debut in Janaan, a romantic comedy, alongside Armeena Khan and Ali Rehman Khan, which was appreciated by critics as well by the audiences. The next year he appeared in the war film Yalghaar which had a decent opening at the box office, while his other 2017 release, Rangreza, was both a critical and commercial failure.
In 2019 he will play the leading role in Mohammed Ehteshamuddin's directorial debut, Superstar, produced by Momina Duraid and with Mahira Khan as co-star. Explaining his long absence since Rangreza, he said that, considering its missed potential, he'll look more seriously at the scripts, and also shared the fact that he took acting classes in the United Kingdom as well as theater classes with actor Sunil Shankar in the NAPA, in Karachi.
|Denotes films that have not yet been released|
|2017||Yalghaar||Captain Bilal||Hassan Rana|
- "Mag the weekly Fashion Magazine - Your Source for Fashion Trends, Beauty Tips, Pop Culture News, and Celebrity Style". www.magtheweekly.com.
- NewsBytes. "Bilal Ashraf and Gohar Rasheed sign another film together".
- The After Moon Show | Episode #3 | 24 Feb 2018 | Kubra Khan & Humayun Saeed with Yasir Hussain, at 34:10 in the link
- Sultan, Sana (Jan 11–17, 2014). "INTERVIEW >> Bilal Ashraf Next heartthrob of Pakistan". magtheweekly.com. Archived from the original on 2014-01-20. Retrieved 2018-08-23.
- Humay Waseem (25 August 2015), "A mix of muscle and masala", The Express Tribune. Retrieved 14 November 2018.
- "Movie stars, Bilal Ashraf and Syra Shahroz’s insane Chemistry fogs up in the camera lens", GOOD TIMES Magazine. 15 May 2017. Retrieved 21 September 2018.
- "Yalghaar rules box-office". The Nation. Retrieved 2017-07-06.
- Ahmed Sarym (21 August 2018). "Mahira Khan, Bilal Ashraf to star in Momina Duraid's next film". The Express Tribune. Retrieved 22 August 2018.
- "Mahira Khan and Bilal Ashraf pair up for Superstar, director Ehteshamuddin confirms". The News. 25 August 2018. Retrieved 25 August 2018.
- Momina Mindeel (6 February 2019), "“I now understand why she is Mahira Khan”- Bilal Ashraf on his ‘Superstar’ co-star", Galaxy Lollywood. Retrieved 7 March 2019.