Actor / Producer / Director Hindi

Dev Anand

Dev Anand Biography

Birth Name: Dharamdev Anand

Born : 26 September 1923, in Gurdaspur, Punjab, British India (now Gurdaspur, Punjab, India)

Death : 03 December 2011, in London, England, UK

Height: 5′ 9″ (1.8 m)

Dev Anand was born Dharamdev Anand, in the present day Narowal district of Punjab in 1923. He spent his early days in Gharota village, Gurdaspur. He completed his schooling in Dalhousie after which he obtained a BA degree from the Government College, Lahore. He arrived in Bombay in the 1940s. He started with odd jobs and then ultimately joined his brother and became a member of the Indian People’s Theatre Association (IPTA). His inspiration came from the works of Ashok Kumar, and after watching Achhut Kanya (1936) and Kismet (1943), Anand harboured a strong desire to be part of the film industry. He got his first break in the Prabhat Films venture Hum Ek Hain (1946) as the lead actor. But his big hit came with the film Ziddi (1948). The success of the film inspired Anand to start his own production company which he named Navketan Films, along with his brother Chetan Anand. 35 films have been made under this banner till date.

Anand did a string of films with Suraiya with whom he also had a torrid affair. All the seven films Vidya (1948), Jeet (1949), Shair (1949), Afsar (1950), Nili (1950), Do Sitare (1951) and Sanam (1951) were huge hits, due to their sizzling chemistry and skilled acting.

In 1951, he produced Baazi (1951) which was directed by Guru Dutt, and had Kalpana Kartik in the lead with Anand. The film became a trendsetter, consequently inspiring the urban crime genre. The film made the duo of Anand and Kartik a hit and they did many films together like Taxi Driver (1954), House No. 44 (1955) and Nau Do Gyarah (1957). They went on to get married in 1954.

It was Dev Anand’s unique acting style and screen presence that made him a star. His films in the 1950s, which included Munimji (1955), Pocket Maar (1956), Funtoosh (1956), C.I.D. (1956) and Paying Guest (1957) made him a household name. Anand soon gained a name for himself as a romantic hero, owing in no small part to his handsome appearance and massive female fan following.

During the 1960s, films like Manzil (1960), Maya (1961), Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai (1961), Asli-Naqli (1962), Tere Ghar Ke Samne (1963), Teen Deviyaan (1965), and Mahal (1969) further propagated the depiction of Dev Anand as the gentlemanly, charming lover.

Guide (1965), based on the novel by the same name written by R K Narayanan was Anand’s first colour film. Opposite Waheeda Rehman, Anand portrayed Raju Guide. The film is considered to be a masterpiece of Indian cinema. All the films which he made in collaboration with his brother, Vijay Anand, were highly successful including Guide (1965), then Jewel Thief (1967) and also Johnny Mera Naam (1970).

He made his directorial debut with Prem Pujari (1970). The film was a commercial failure during its time, but over the decades, it has developed a cult following. His big directorial venture of Hare Rama Hare Krishna (1971) was a huge hit. Anand’s introduction of Zeenat Aman to the silver screen, led to her becoming a rage and one of the most popular icons of the era.

His evergreen image stayed true to its name as he romanced younger actresses, while his contemporaries had started to age and play roles as fathers and uncles. Tina Munim made her debut with Anand in Des Pardes (1978) which was a big success. She was all of 20, while Anand was 55.

He directed the film Anand Vs Anand( 1984) to launch his son Suneil Anand. But the film did not do well. Suneil made no film appearance since then. Later on, Anand made Awwal Number (1990) with Aamir Khan. The film was an average grosser. He also directed Sau Crore (1991) and Censor (2000), which were critically appreciated. But the rest of the films he made later did not fare very well. The last film he directed and acted in was Chargesheet (2011).

Dev Anand was awarded the Padma Bhushan by the Government of India in 2001. He won the National Film Award and the Filmfare Award for Guide (1967) as well as the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award in 1991.

Anand died in 2011, on 3 December, of a cardiac arrest, at the age of 83. Dev Anand had made sure he was a strong presence in the film industry until his death, and he remains an immortal name even today.