Doubly happy because it is Dev Anand’s birthday: Waheeda Rehman on getting Dadasaheb Phalke award

PTI, Sep 26, 2023, 3:34 PM IST

Veteran actor Waheeda Rehman on Tuesday said she was thrilled to get the Dadasaheb Phalke Lifetime Achievement Award and termed it a ”double celebration” as the announcement coincides with her ”Guide” co-star Dev Anand’s 100th birth anniversary. Rehman made her debut in Hindi films opposite Dev Anand in Guru Dutt’s 1956 film ”CID” and went on to act with him in several other films, including ”Prem Pujari” and ”Solva Saal”. ”I’m very happy and doubly happy because it is Dev Anand’s birthday. I think, ‘taufa unko milna tha, mujhe mil gaya’,” Rehman told PTI.

”It is very wonderful that his celebration is going on and I get this honour. I’m really happy and grateful to the government that they chose me for this honour. So it is a combination and celebration of this and Dev sahab’s 100th birth anniversary,” she said. The 85-year-old, whose filmography includes all-time classics ”Pyaasa”, ”Kaagaz ke Phool” and ”Chaudhvin Ka Chand” as well as later hits such as ”Kabhi Kabhie” and ”Khamoshi”, said she did not expect any award. ”I’m not working these days. I don’t expect anything, I never expect any award. I think, ‘milna hai toh milega’, if they think it is right for me I’ll get it it, that’s all,” she said. Rehman spoke warmly of her years working with Dev Anand, a co-star she described as passionate about movies. ”It was very comfortable working with him. It was very nice from day one. He was so cooperative and helpful. I did seven movies with him, and not on a single day do I remember him having any problem with his co-artist, director or production (people).” Of all their films, ”Guide” is perhaps the best remembered. ”He was a thorough gentleman. He used to come on time. He only had one hobby, one passion, which is to make movies, and till the last moment he was making movies,” she said. Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur announced that Rehman was getting the Dadasaheb Phalke, the government’s highest recognition in the field of cinema, on his official X account.

”I feel an immense sense of happiness and honour in announcing that Waheeda Rehman ji is being bestowed with the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke Lifetime Achievement Award this year for her stellar contribution to Indian Cinema,” the minister wrote.

In a career spanning over five decades, Rehman, who made her acting debut with the 1955 Telugu films ”Rojulu Maraayi” and ”Jayasimha”, worked in more than 90 films across languages. Her last film was the 2021 sports drama ”Skater Girl”. She received a National Film Award for her role as a clanswoman in ”Reshma and Shera” (1971). She has also received a Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan.

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