Anand was born Devdutt Pishorimal Anand in Gurdaspur, Punjab,
the middle son of a well-to-do advocate. He was very shy and
was always bullied by girls. He graduated in arts in 1942 from
the government college in Lahore and went to Delhi to work as
a clerk for two months before he came to Bombay in search of
a break in the film world. In Bombay, he stayed with his elder
brother late Chetan Anand and took up a job in the wartime British
censor office where he worked as a clerk for two and a half
years. All through this period, he visited the studios and film
offices of the city seeking the break which nobody was keen
to give him.
first acting assignment came with Prabhat's Hum Ek Hain (1946)
but the film didn't do anything at all for his career. Ziddi
(1948) at Bombay Talkies was Dev's first success. The following
year he turned producer and launched his own banner, Navketan.
Navketan's first offering was Afsar (1950) starring Dev and
lady love Suraiya and was directed by elder brother Chetan.
The film however flopped at the box office.
Suraiya-Dev Anand romance was the talk of the town. The team
emerged as the most sought after by producers and distributors
and they starred in seven films together and almost all of them
were successful at the box office. However their romance ended
as Suraiya could not take a stand against her strict grandmother.
Suraiya went out of his life, Dev met Mona Singha later remaned
Kalpana Kartik and they fell in love. She became his heroine
in Baazi directed by Guru Dutt. With Baazi Dev Anand shot to
fame. The film, written by actor Balraj Sahni, was a trendsetter
of sorts leading to the spate of urban crime thrillers Bollywood
churned out in the 1950s.
Anand married Kalpana Kartik on January 3, 1954, on the sets
of Taxi Driver at Model studios. After her marriage Kalpana
worked in two more films with her husband, House Number 44 and
Nau do Gyarah.
26 years from 1950 to 1976 Dev Anand made 22 films under the
Nav Ketan banner. His other notable films were Jewel Thief,
Heera Panna, Prem Pujari, Hare Rama Hare Krishna, Johnny Mera
Naam, Sharreef Badmash, Tere Mere Sapne, Chupa Rustum, Ishq
Ishq Ishq and Janeman. Dev Anand has starred opposite all the
top leading ladies of the 40s and 50s including Suraiya, Kamini
Kaushal, Nargis, Meena Kumari, Madhubala, Nimi, Geeta Bali,
Nalini Jayawant and Nutan.
Anand won a Filmfare award for his superb performance in Raj
Khosla’s film Kala Pani (1958). Hum Dono (1961) saw him
excel in a double role and Guide (1965) saw a perfectly nuanced
performance from him, perhaps the best of his career. The character
of Raju Guide was yet another shaded character he played. Dev
played him with just the right shade of grey - humanizing him
with all his faults yet getting the audience to sympathize with
him. It was a wonderful performance fetching him his second
Filmfare Best Actor Award.
Anand entered the 1970s on a high with Johnny Mera Naam (1970)
and also took to direction with Prem Pujari (1970). His best
efforts in this field were Hare Rama Hare Krishna (1971) and
Desh Pardes (1978). The film launched the career of Zeenat Aman.
Other heroines he has launched include Tina Munim (now Ambani),
Natasha Sinha and Ekta. He also tried to launch his son Suneil
with Anand Aur Anand (1984) but was unsuccessful.
January 26, 2001 Dev Anand was awarded the Padma Bhushan for
his contribution to Indian Cinema and the latest feather in
the cap of this evergreen hero is the Dadasaheb Phalke Award.
Dev Anand continues to make films today and though his last
few films haven't been successful he just keeps on going with