Pakistanis are making it big in Hollywood, especially in the visual arts category. The list is only growing, with visual effects expert Laraib Atta climbing unprecedented heights after her big breakthrough back in 2006 at the age of 19.
Laraib is the daughter of legendary singer Attaullah Khan Esakhelvi, as well as the first and the youngest female Pakistani visual effects artist in Hollywood. And her latest project is Tom Cruise’s Mission: Impossible – Fallout.
“Before I started the course, I had no idea what VFX is. I just knew that this is magic for films, that’s all I knew,” Atta commented in a recent interview with BBC Asian Network. “The first time I watched Toy Story, it really inspired me. I was like ‘Wow, how is this done’?”
So, it was hard to explain to her parents what exactly is it that she does. “My parents didn’t even know what I was getting into,” she laughed. “But they absolutely supported me when I talked to my father, my mother. They told me that I have all the choice in the world! Whatever you want to do, whatever career you wish to pursue, you can definitely go for it.”
Laraib also hopes to inspire other young Pakistani women.
“Back in the day when I started, I was the only girl in my course. I was the youngest and of course, the only Pakistani. I don’t see a lot of Pakistanis,” Laraib added. “There are some women I’ve started to see now in the industry that still has 70%-80% men,” the now 31-year-old artist commented. “The goal is to get more women, young people into this and more Pakistanis.”