Had Dev Anand been alive he would have become a nonagenarian. The sweet memories of Dev Anand still linger in the minds of people, especially the older generation. Lovingly known as Dev Saheb in the film industry, the actor was born as Dharam Dev Pishorimal Anand on September 26,1923.
After his graduation he tried to join the Indian Navy, but did not succeed.
Dev Anand got his break when he gatecrashed the office of Babu Rao Pai Of Prabhat Film studios in search of work. After debuting in Hum Ek Hein, opposite Kamala Kotnis in 1946,there was no looking back.
He was often compared to Hollywood film star Gregory Peck because of their close resemblance. He never went to funerals but when his mother and brother died he wept a lot. With the help of Chetan he produced Afsar in which Suraiya and Dev Anand were in the lead roles.
Dev Anand’s strong bond with Guru Dutt was known to everybody. The two made a pact that all of Guru Dutt’s films will have Dev Anand in the lead and all of Dev Anand’s films will be directed by Guru Dutt. They kept their promise. In the late 1940s, Dev Anand was offered a few roles as a male lead opposite singer-actress Suraiya. He considered himself lucky to get a chance to star opposite an established actress.
The two of them were paired in seven films all of which were successful at the box office. While shooting, Dev Anand became romantically involved with Suraiya. Suriaya also fell in love with him, especially during the shooting of the song, Kinare chale jayenge from the film, Vidya. While shooting the scene, the boat they were on, capsised, and Dev Anand saved Suraiya from drowning.
On the sets of Jeet, Dev Anand proposed to Suraiya, and presented her with a diamond ring worth Rs 3000. However, Suraiya’s maternal grandmother opposed the relationship as they were Muslim, while Dev Anand was Hindu. Eventually, Suraiya remained unmarried till her death in 2004. They also stopped acting together because of Suraiya’s grandmother. So the last film they did was Do Sitare.
He was also paired with Bina Rai, Shakeela, Kalpana Karthik (who later became his wife), Asha Parekh, Vyjayanthimala, Geetha Bali, Waheeda Rahman, Nanda, Mumtaz, Zeenat Aman, Nuthan, Sadana, Sasikala and Hema Malini, among many others. Dev Anand won the Filmfare awards for best actor in 1959 for Kalapani, and in 1967 for Guide. He got the best film award in 1967 for Guide and in 1991 he was honoured with the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement award. In 2002 he got the Dada Saheb Phalke Award.