Cairo West Magazine Reminisces
Amongst the special memories that the past seven years have held for us, we especially treasure the intimate interviews we conducted with talented actors who have brought us laughter, suspense and tears, year after year. We pay tribute by once again enjoying their candid comments on life, their art, and love.
Ahmed El Sakka
“ Emotions are emotions, it depends how you deliver them.”
What would be your perfect evening out?
In the desert under a full moon, a couple of chairs… and I don’t want to say more!
What do you do when you’re bored?
Go and ride one of my horses, or take my dogs out.
What’s your worst habit?
It used to be losing my temper – but these days I’ve cooled down a lot.
Are you a late night or early morning person?
I like to sleep early and wake up early.
What are you reading right now?
A new script that will be my next project. It’s a historical movie set during the Ottoman occupation.
Do you have a favourite song on repeat?
I love to listen to classical music of all kinds, especially the songs of Um Kulthum and Abdel Halim Hafez.
Where did you go on your last holiday?
Cyprus. It was actually work, as we were shooting there, but my family came out for a holiday.
Who was the last person you dialled on your phone?
You guys – to say I was on my way!
Name five essential items you never travel without?
My electric hand shaver, a small shoulder bag, my passport and my home-sickness.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Before my father died, he asked me, why do they call you a movie star? When I began to list to him my achievements he interrupted me and said: never become untouchable like a star, never take revenge on anyone, and always forgive what is done to you.
“I feel regret is an impediment to progress, it slows you down.”
Late night or early riser?
Late night definitely
Tea or coffee?
Sand or snow?
Favourite restaurant in Cairo?
La Trattoria in Zamalek
5 essential items you can’t travel without?
My phone (as much as I’d love to leave it behind, I can’t); waterproof jacket, credit card, a friend. I’m not a loner…. that’s it!
I don’t have a favourite but I really enjoyed the last book I read called Ababeel. We’re considering turning it into a film or series.
“Always take the hard way. Short cuts never pay off in the end. ”
What are you currently reading?
The Deceased by Hassan Kamel.
Do you have a favorite song on repeat?
Not really. I love all good music, so there are lots of things!
Where do you like to shop?
Beymen at the Four Seasons.
Tabla Luna. It’s a Peruvian fusion restaurant in Maadi.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Look up to your father and strive to be at least as good as he is in all ways.
Karim Abdel Aziz
What is your favorite cuisine?
Most recent film you watched?
Godzilla and it was horrible!
Cigarettes and high irritability (asabeya).
I’m light hearted!
What makes you laugh?
I laugh at unexpected things.
Favorite item of clothing?
Casual clothes preferably in darker colors.
Favorite holiday location?
Best advice you have received?
My father is very disciplined, and one of the many things he has taught me is punctuality.
Finish these sentences:
Success is……That The Blue Elephant is a box office hit.
“…by following the third eye and your instincts you end up seeing the world from a different perspective.”
Night person or morning person?
Morning. I might have been a night person once, but those days are long gone. I even have difficulty staying awake when we are out socializing in the evenings.
Sand or snow?
Sand – big time. I’m not into the cold, I’m from Africa, remember.
Beauty and exercise routine?
I try to find time for daily creams and skin maintenance, and I’m into sports. I exercise with a personal trainer who comes to the house. Most of all though, I meditate daily.
Tea or coffee?
Neither, I don’t take caffeine.
Five essentials you never travel without?
Comfortable shoes, an Egyptian loofah, flip flops, an over-the-shoulder messenger bag, and a good book.
Ghazl Banat, clothing boutique.
I hardly ever eat out, but maybe Saffron, and Seasons Bistro.
Song on repeat?
Angham’s new song, released for Valentine’s Day.
Last holiday destination?
The last person you dialled on your phone?
My daughter. She’s on her way home from school.
Best relationship advice?
Don’t think ‘me’ all the time, think ‘we’.
“I love design…in all its forms”
Your favourite food?
Potatoes, cooked any way at any time.
Favourite place in the world?
El Gouna, I love Egypt and Gouna is my favourite place on earth!
Your dream vacation?
Again, near the beach with my family.
Your signature style?
Simple and uncomplicated, in both lifestyle and dress.
“We have some amazing talent in this country”
Best advice you received?
The most important piece of advice I was given is to not let success go to my head. Vanity is detrimental to anyone’s wellbeing.
What is your formula for happiness?
Forgiveness and Love. Happiness comes from feeling content. If you harbor ill feelings towards anyone, you are only hurting yourself.
When two people share their life together there are bound to be some changes that each one has to make. Just do that without losing your own identity. It is also important not to focus on what you do not like in that person, rather celebrate what you love about them. I believe communication is key to any relationship. Learn to talk and express your concerns. Resolve issues as soon as they come up.
Habit you would like to change?
When I am worried or stressed, I tend to shut down. It affects everyone around me. I am not the same person around them any more. It happens when I am working, I tend to focus on that one thing and shut everything else out
I am forgiving and patient. I like to see everyone around me happy. If I see someone going through a hard time that I’ve been through, I like to assure him or her that it is going to pass.
Favorite holiday location?
Anywhere by the sea. I love relaxing, serene and Zen destinations.
Essential items you can’t travel without?
My Qur’an, my prayer beads, my ventilator (I am asthmatic), perfume and lipstick.