Look Inside

Ten Years with Guru Dutt (Abrar Alvi's Journey)

FREE Delivery
Delivery Ships in 1-3 days
Item Code: UAW646
Author: Sathya Saran
Publisher: Penguin Random House India Pvt. Ltd.
Language: English
Edition: 2008
ISBN: 9780143416920
Pages: 215
Other Details 8.00 X 5.00 inch
Weight 170 gm
Fully insured
Fully insured
Shipped to 153 countries
Shipped to 153 countries
More than 1M+ customers worldwide
More than 1M+ customers worldwide
100% Made in India
100% Made in India
23 years in business
23 years in business

Book Description

About The Book

In Ten Years with Guru Dutt: Abrar Alvi's Journey, Sathya Saran looks at the tumultuous yet incredibly fecund relationship between the mercurial director and his equally talented, albeit unsung, writer-a partnership that evolved over a decade, until Dutt's tragic death in 1964. Starting his career as a driver and a chaperone to Dutt's producer on the sets of Baaz. Alvi soon caught the attention of the director with his sharp ear for and understanding of film dialogue. With Aar Paar in 1954, Alvi rewrote the rules of dialogue-writing in Hindi cinema. until then marked by theatricality and artificiality. He followed it up with masterpieces like Mr and Mrs 55, Pyaasa and Kaagaz Ke Phool, before donning the director's mantle with great success in Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam.

Brimming with lively anecdotes-like how Alvi honed his skills by writing more than 300 love letters; how an accident involving a buffalo led to the discovery of Waheeda Rehman; and Guru Dutt's visit to a kotha to get the ambience right for Pyaasa-this acclaimed book is a warm and insightful look at two remarkable artistes who inspired each other to create movie magic.

About the Author

Sathya Saran is one of India's leading journalists and best known for her stint as editor of the popular women's magazine, Femina. Apart from short stories and a series of biographies on cinema and music greats, Saran has written extensively on issues concerning women. She has won a number of awards for her contribution to journalism. She lives in Mumbai with her family and dogs.


The article I had just read got me thinking.

It was an interview with Abrar Alvi, in the Indian Express, and at the end of it, the writer threw out a challenge on behalf of the interviewee. Abrar Alvi had many stories to tell about his life and his work with Guru Dutt, if someone was willing to listen to them.

Was there such a person around, the interviewer wondered.

Having always been fascinated by Indian cinema, the challenge intrigued me. I was at that time going through a rough patch emotionally, thanks to matters at the workplace turning sour. This, I told myself, would distract me, keep me from feeling that my journalistic job was the beginning and the end of the world.

I called Abrar and, referring to the article, offered my services. He was wary, yet interested. proposed going over to meet him. He was not sure he wanted me to, but agreed half-heartedly. We were almost at the end of the conversation, when he asked me my name once more. spelt it out to him.

'Saran?' he said. 'I thought Saral. I knew a Saran in Nagpur-

That must be my family,' butted in.

It turned out in the next ten minutes, that Abrar had known my husband's cousins closely. A warmth entered his voice; I could sense trust flooding in. And the date for our meeting was set. It was the start of a long association of reminiscences and narrations. Every Saturday. would take a train from V.T. Station (now Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus) to Andheri, then a bus to his building and the lift up to his apartment on the tenth floor where, after I had taken off my footwear and was seated in a breezy corner of the drawing room by a window, Abrar would come in and we would start the process of recording, in my handwriting, the ten years of his life with one of India's most creative film makers.

Surprisingly, my knowledge of Guru Dutt was not as deep as that of other directors, but as Abrar began narrating his stories! found myself living, vicariously, a life that was dominated by a mind that had many facets, many aspects of genius. Perhaps the fact that we share a date he died on 10 October, the date (not the same year though) was born-has something to do with it.

Abrar himself was fascinating. Equally fluent in Hindi, Urdu and English, he would reel out stories with amazing dexterity, sometimes meandering into a by-lane of thought, till I, patiently, deftly drew him back. He never took umbrage at the interruptions, having warned me himself that he was in the habit of losing the thread of his thoughts and that I should goad him back to the point from where he had wandered.

As the stories unfolded, sometimes chronologically, mostly at random, it dawned upon me that here was a very angry, bitter, disappointed man. His anger was directed at many things.

For one, he ranted about the fact that he was still being robbed of his right-the credit for directing Guru Dutt Films most lauded, most awarded, film, Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam. Critics have over the years insisted that Abrar was only a front for a director who had decided he did not want to take credit thanks to a superstition, resulting from the debacle of Koogaz Ke Phool that he was jinxed.

Book's Contents and Sample Pages

Frequently Asked Questions
  • Q. What locations do you deliver to ?
    A. Exotic India delivers orders to all countries having diplomatic relations with India.
  • Q. Do you offer free shipping ?
    A. Exotic India offers free shipping on all orders of value of $30 USD or more.
  • Q. Can I return the book?
    A. All returns must be postmarked within seven (7) days of the delivery date. All returned items must be in new and unused condition, with all original tags and labels attached. To know more please view our return policy
  • Q. Do you offer express shipping ?
    A. Yes, we do have a chargeable express shipping facility available. You can select express shipping while checking out on the website.
  • Q. I accidentally entered wrong delivery address, can I change the address ?
    A. Delivery addresses can only be changed only incase the order has not been shipped yet. Incase of an address change, you can reach us at help@exoticindia.com
  • Q. How do I track my order ?
    A. You can track your orders simply entering your order number through here or through your past orders if you are signed in on the website.
  • Q. How can I cancel an order ?
    A. An order can only be cancelled if it has not been shipped. To cancel an order, kindly reach out to us through help@exoticindia.com.
Add a review
Have A Question

For privacy concerns, please view our Privacy Policy

Book Categories