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"I am an actor who will rise with the occasion" - Dev Anand... Contd.

Published: Friday, November 2, 2007, 18:16 [IST]


Tell us about your three best performances which you would like to repeat at this age.
I would not like to repeat because I do not believe in repetitions. It is like going backwards. I want to go forward in my life. There have been many performances, which have been hailed by the world; performances, which were hailed by the critics, some performances that you hail yourself that, go unnoticed. I think every film I have done; I've put in my best. If I were to name a film by which my fans know me till today it has to be - Guide.

You have rated 'Romancing with Life" as one of your best works. As far as films are concerned, which script would you rate as your favorite?
My own writing work was brilliant in the film, Censor. I had to present two point of views. One of a liberal mind and the other of a conservative mind, which meant the government. I want to out-play myself in every department, whether it's acting, writing my book or writing scripts for my films. Each day I am growing younger and learning.

puffed hairstyle and your way of swinging and talking still inspires hundreds of stand-up comedians. What do you have to say?
I was myself. I was Dev Anand. I did not create a style or set a statement. But I experimented with my style and when you experiment, chances are that you may not be liked. But with me, I set a trend as my fans from all over the world wanted their Dev Anand to be the way they wanted him to be. I still wear one thing, which has been with me since more than three decades and that is my Scarf.

There was one episode with Zeenat Aman, yourself and Raj Kapoor which is sending shock waves to the fans who have read your book. How true is that?
Each and every page of 'Romancing with Life" is true. Nothing is false. I cannot talk much in detail about the incident, which happened during the evening party. I had no monopoly over Zeenat. I said one day that Zeenat will be a big star and she did. She became a cult figure. I brought her to the world of cinema and the world took her. I was the one who introduced Zeenat to Raj and for which Raj paid me a compliment. All I can say is that one has to move ahead in life and that is what I did at that time.

Performance wise, whom would you rate as your best co-actress.
I cannot talk about any one. Right now, I can remember that Waheeda Rehman was good in Guide, Zeenat was good in Hare Rama Hare Krishna, Tina grew with Des Pardes and Nutan in Tere Ghar Ke Samne. I have enjoyed working with Suraiya and Hema Malini too.

At 84, do you still dream of having an Oscar Award for the lifetime achievement?
It is a tremendous stimulus for the man who gets an Oscar. They say when you get an Oscar, the revenue of a motion picture skyrockets. It's a great to win an Oscar but even greater is the feeling when you show your film to the world...and that's the biggest Oscar.

What's the best compliment you've received in your sixty years of career?
It has to come from my fans. They say that I inspire them as I have a very optimistic approach towards life. I am full of zest, energy, and passion.

Which of the current actor's work do you admire the most?
Again, I will not single out anybody. The mere fact that the actor is a Star, Badshah or a King proves that the actor has something in him or her which people admire.

Any recent film which you have loved watching?
I see all the films of my contemporaries as it gives me motivation to do something better. It's good to see how these young minds are coming together and making a hit film in today's unpredictable times. The only film, which I can remember seeing, is the Munnabhai MBBS starring Sanjay Dutt. I was invited by Raj Kumar Hirani to see the film before its release. I liked the film.

What food do you choose to eat when you are in London?
I am a vegetarian, except, I do not mind eating good chicken. I like to have continental and Italian dishes too and sometimes you get good and tasty Indian food in London than in India.

There are many actors who are not so approachable in today's time. How approachable are you?
I have to remember that my fans are the ones who have brought me here today where I am. If it pleases them, I will do anything for them. If my presence makes them happy, then I will even go and meet them at their house.

India in your era was different. What has changed India?
India has never changed; it has always grown from strength to strength. I love my country India but that does not mean that I go on beating the drum about my patriotic feeling. India is growing and I am proud of it. There are great young brains today in India, as good as anywhere else and they are going to beat the world. Even in films, there are new scriptwriters, new directors, new technicians, etc. It is a very healthy sign.

What is that one thing you cannot live without?
I cannot live without my films, my cinema, and my work. For me, until I die, movie making and acting will always be my first and last love.

How would you sum up your book 'Romancing with Life"?
'Romancing with Life" is a very positive book. It is I...Dev Anand, its ongoing and it is definitely not all of me yet. There are many things, which are not mentioned in the book because of space. Your evergreen Dev Anand will come again with greater gusto with an even bigger and better something.

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