Known variously as the last emperor in the Indian film
world, a living legend, the thespian, few would contest that Dilip Kumar has
been a dominant figure for over five decades in an industry where actors spring
up like mushrooms and are wiped out of public memory like bubbles in water or
footprints in the sand. His status as the unquestioned icon of Hindi screen is a
tribute both to his star appeal among successive generations of Hindi film
audiences and his acting calibre.
Lovingly and film-by-film, this book traces Dilip Kumar’s
legendary career which started by pure chance when he was barely twenty-two and
with no interest in films to speak of. Dilip Kumar achieved his undisputed
status as India’s outstanding film actor through sheer hard work and astonishing
dedication. Acting in only fifty-four films in nearly as many years, Dilip
helped create landmark films from the 1940s to the 1980s, including Shaheed,
Jogan, Devdas, Naya Daur, Mughal-e-Azam, Gunga Jumna, Sagina Mahato and
Shakti, to name a few. Intensely interested in all aspects of the films he
worked in, Dilip also directed several of them.
Dilip Kumar is a very private man in a very public
industry. Thus, while so much has been written about him in the media there
remains an aura of mystery about him. This book attempts to flesh out the person
behind the star and how Dilip Kumar’s cultured dignity and grace have given him
a credibility which transcends the silver screen, making him a public figure who
is both widely admired and respected.
The book also
contains a complete filmography of Dilip Kumar and an array of photographs that
chronicle his life and films.