The sad demise of the film legend Dev Anand marks the end of an era of Indian Cinema. Often cited as the ‘Evergreen Super star of Bollywood ‘ Dev Anand played the lead actor for more than five decades in over 110 films. Dev Anand has given a new proportion to that wonderful state known as Stardom. He debuted in 1946 with the movie named “Hum Ek Hain” and he continued to rule Bollywood until the 70’s as a superstar. The actor was compared with Hollywood Legend Gregory Peck early in his career because of his mannerisms and hairstyle which was very similar to the Hollywood actor.
Born on 26th September 1923 in Gurdaspur, Punjab, Dev Anand was the third son of Pishori Lal Anand, who was a well known advocate. After graduating from Government College Lahore in English Literature, the actor travelled to Mumbai, where he worked as a clerk in a government office. Soon after joining as a member of the Indian People's Theatre Association, Dev was offered the lead role in 1946 in Prabhat Films' Hum Ek Hain, from where the journey of a superstar began. During late 40’s, the actor got romantically linked with noted singer and actress of that time named Suraiya, with whom he acted in seven films namely Vidya released in 1948, Jeet released in 1949, Afsar in 1950, Do Sitare in 1951 and Sanam released in 1951, all of which proved to be a major hit at the box office. Suraiya chose to remain unmarried after their relationship was opposed by her maternal grandmother, as both of them were of different caste.
The actor continued to be more prominent as a romantic hero in the 60’s with movies like Manzil , Tere Ghar ke samne ,Kinaare Kinaare, Maya, Asli Naqli, Mahal , Jab Pyar Kisise Hota hai and Teen Deviyaan. His most celebrated first colored film Guide released in 1965, based on the Novel of R.K Narayan, was critically acclaimed as it proved to be a blockbuster hit of that year to win all the four major awards at the filmfare including the Best Movie, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Actress awards. 42 years after its release the film was screened at the 2007 cannes film festival.
In 1954 Dev Anand married Kalpana Kartik in a quite ceremony in Russia. Originally known as Mona, Kalpana Kartik was a college beauty queen from Shimla, the actress worked opposite Dev Anand in all her movies. The couple was blessed with parenthood in 1956, when their first son Suneil was born. And later they were blessed with a daughter named Devina.
Although his first directorial debut Prem Pujari released in the year 1970 was a flop, the actor evolved as an accomplished director with super hit movies like Hare Rama Hare Krishna which portrayed the hippie revolution and Des Pardes in which he gave the first break to the famous yesteryear actress Tina Munim. Dev Anand along with his brothers Vijay Anand and Ketan Anand ran one of Bollywood’s most successful banners named Navketan Films which is now being administered by Dev’s son Suneil.
It is said that the Adonis of Indian Cinema, Dev Anand, was actively involved in politics as well as he along with a group of film personalities stood against the Internal Emergency established by Indira Gandhi. He also formed the National Party of India, which he dissolved himself.
For his exemplary work, the actor was honored with a number of awards including the Padma Bhusan in 2001 and Dada Saheb Palke award in 2002. In 2003, the actor was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award at IIFA award ceremony in Johannesburg, South Africa.
The Hindi cinema’s timeless leading man was adored by millions for his never give up spirit as he always said that he will continue to work till his last breathe. His latest directorial movie Chargesheet was released in 30th September 2011.