|Nominated Member of Parliament, Rajya Sabha|
22 March 2010 – 21 March 2016
|Born||17 January 1945|
Gwalior, Gwalior State, British India
(present-day Madhya Pradesh, India)
|Education||Colvin Taluqdars' College, Lucknow|
Javed Akhtar (born 17 January 1945) is an Indian screenwriter, lyricist and poet. Known for his work in Hindi cinema, he has won five National Film Awards, and received the Padma Shri in 1999 and the Padma Bhushan in 2007, two of India's highest civilian honours.
Akhtar came to recognition in the duo Salim–Javed, and earned his breakthrough as a screenwriter with 1973's Zanjeer. He went on to write the films Deewaar and Sholay, both released in 1975; they earned a cult following, and had a significant impact in popular culture. He later earned praise for his work as a lyricist, winning the National Film Award for Best Lyrics five times and the Filmfare Award for Best Lyricist eight times.
Akhtar notably campaigned for the Communist Party of India (CPI) and their candidate in the 2019 Indian general election, and was a member of parliament in Rajya Sabha. For his work, he received the Richard Dawkins Award in 2020.
Javed Akhtar was born in 1945 in Gwalior. His father Jan Nisar Akhtar was a Bollywood film songwriter and Urdu poet. His paternal grandfather Muztar Khairabadi was a poet as was his grandfather's elder brother, Bismil Khairabadi, while his great great grandfather, Fazl-e-Haq Khairabadi, was a religious scholar of Islam who declared the Jihad in 1857 against the English for religious reasons. Javed Akhtar's original name was Jadoo, taken from a line in a poem written by his father: "Lamha, lamha kisi jadoo ka fasana hoga". He was given the official name of Javed since it was the closest to the word jadoo. He spent most of his childhood and was schooled in Lucknow. He graduated from Saifiya College in Bhopal.
Main article: Salim-Javed
Initially, in the 1970s, there was generally no concept of having the same writer for the screenplay, story and dialogue, nor were the writers given any credits in the titles. Rajesh Khanna is credited with giving Salim Khan and Javed Akhtar their first chance to become screenplay writers by offering them work in Haathi Mere Saathi. Javed Akhtar stated in an interview that one day, he went to Salimsaab and said that Mr. Devar had given him a huge signing amount with which he could complete the payment for his bungalow, Aashirwad. But the film was a remake and the script of the original was far from being satisfactory. "He told us that if we could set right the script, he would make sure we got both money and credit."
Their first big success was the script for Andaz, followed by Adhikar (1971), Haathi Mere Saathi and Seeta Aur Geeta (1972). They also had hits with Yaadon Ki Baaraat (1973), Zanjeer (1973), Haath Ki Safai (1974), Deewaar (1975), Sholay (1975), Chacha Bhatija (1977), Don (1978), Trishul (1978), Dostana (1980), Kranti (1981), Zamana (1985) and Mr. India (1987). They have worked together in 24 films including two Kannada films – Premada Kanike and Raja Nanna Raja.
Of the 24 films they wrote, 20 were hits. The scripts they wrote, but which were not successful at box office include Aakhri Dao (1975), Immaan Dharam (1977), Kaala Patthar (1979) and Shaan (1980). Though they split in 1982, due to ego issues, some of the scripts they wrote were made into hit films later, such as Zamana and Mr. India. Salim-Javed, many a time described as "the most successful scriptwriters of all-time", are also noted to be the first scriptwriters in Indian cinema to achieve star status.
“There are certain things that I’d like to make clear at the very outset. Don’t get carried away by my name — Javed Akhtar. I am not revealing a secret, I am saying something that I have said many times, in writing or on TV, in public… I’m an atheist, I have no religious beliefs. And I don’t believe in spirituality of some kind".
Akhtar was nominated to the Parliament upper house Rajya Sabha on 16 November 2009. Akhtar was married to Honey Irani, with whom he had two children, Farhan Akhtar, a film actor, producer, director and Zoya Akhtar, a film writer, director and producer. The father-and-son duo have worked together in films such as Dil Chahta Hai, Lakshya, Rock On!! and Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara with Zoya. Farhan was married to Adhuna Akhtar, a hair stylist. Despite having an Islamic upbringing, Akhtar is an atheist, and brought up his children Farhan and Zoya Akhtar as atheists.
Akhtar married Shabana Azmi, the daughter of Urdu poet, Kaifi Azmi and later divorced Irani. Akhtar's uncle, Asrar-ul-Haq "Majaz" was also an Urdu poet. His uncle, Ansar Harvani, was a member of the Indian independence movement and an elected Member of Parliament. Akhtar's aunt, Hamida Salim, was an Indian author, economist and educator as well.
Javed was awarded the civilian honour of Padma Shri by the Government of India in 1999, followed by the Padma Bhushan in 2007. In 2013, he received the Sahitya Akademi Award in Urdu, India's second highest literary honour, for his poetry collection Lava. In 2019, he was conferred with an honorary doctorate (Doctor of Letters) by the Jamia Hamdard University. In 2020 he was awarded the Richard Dawkins Award for being a "powerful force for secularism, reason, and human rights, challenging superstition and intolerance through his work in poetry, screenwriting, and political activism".
|1996||National Film Awards||Best Lyrics||Won||Saaz|
|1995||Filmfare Awards||Best Lyricist||Won||"Ek Ladki Ko Dekha" from 1942: A Love Story|
|1997||Won||"Ghar Se Nikalte" from Papa Kehte Hai|
|1989||Nominated||"Ek Do Teen" from Tezaab|
|1990||Best Dialogue||Won||Main Azaad Hoon|
|1998||Best Lyricist||Won||"Sandese Aate Hai" from Border|
|1998||Nominated||"Chand Taare" from Yes Boss|
|1999||Nominated||"Mere Mehboob Mere Sanam" from Duplicate|
|2001||Best Lyricist||Won||"Panchchi Nadiyaan" from Refugee|
|2002||Won||"Radha Kaise Naa Jale" from Lagaan|
|2002||Nominated||"Mitwa" from Lagaan|||
|2011||Mirchi Music Awards||Album of The Year||Nominated||Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara|||
|Lyricist of The Year||Won||"Khwabon Ke Parindey" from Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara|
|Nominated||"Senorita" from Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara|
|2012||Won||"Jee Le Zara" from Talaash|||
|2014||Lifetime Achievement Award||Won||-|||
|2015||Album of The Year||Nominated||Dil Dhadakne Do|||
|Lyricist of The Year||Nominated||"Phir Bhi Yeh Zindagi" from Dil Dhadakne Do|
|1971||Andaz||Hindi||Ramesh Sippy||Rajesh Khanna, Hema Malini, Shammi Kapoor, Simi Garewal||Written as "Salim-Javed"|
|Adhikar||Hindi||S.M. Sagar||Ashok Kumar, Nanda, Deb Mukherjee|
|Haathi Mere Saathi||M. A. Thirumugham||Rajesh Khanna, Tanuja|
|1972||Seeta Aur Geeta||Ramesh Sippy||Hema Malini, Dharmendra, Sanjeev Kumar|
|1973||Yaadon Ki Baaraat||Nasir Hussain||Dharmendra, Vijay Arora, Tariq Khan|
|Zanjeer||Prakash Mehra||Amitabh Bachchan, Jaya Bhaduri, Pran|
|1974||Majboor||Ravi Tandon||Amitabh Bachchan, Parveen Babi, Pran|
|Haath Ki Safai||Prakash Mehra||Randhir Kapoor, Vinod Khanna, Hema Malini, Simi Garewal, Ranjeet|
|1975||Deewaar||Yash Chopra||Amitabh Bachchan, Shashi Kapoor, Parveen Babi, Neetu Singh|
|Sholay||Ramesh Sippy||Dharmendra, Amitabh Bachchan, Sanjeev Kumar, Hema Malini, Jaya Bhaduri|
|Aakhri Dao||A. Salaam||Jeetendra, Saira Banu, Danny Denzongpa|
|1976||Premada Kanike||Kannada||V. Somashekhar||Rajkumar, Aarathi|
|Raja Nanna Raja||A. V. Seshagiri Rao|
|1977||Immaan Dharam||Hindi||Desh Mukherjee||Amitabh Bachchan, Shashi Kapoor, Sanjeev Kumar, Rekha|
|Chacha Bhatija||Manmohan Desai||Dharmendra, Randhir Kapoor, Hema Malini|
|1978||Trishul||Yash Chopra||Amitabh Bachchan, Sanjeev Kumar, Shashi Kapoor, Hema Malini|
|Don||Chandra Barot||Amitabh Bachchan, Zeenat Aman, Pran|
|1979||Kaala Patthar||Yash Chopra||Amitabh Bachchan, Shashi Kapoor, Rakhee Gulzar, Shatrughan Sinha, Parveen Babi, Neetu Singh|
|1980||Dostana||Raj Khosla||Amitabh Bachchan, Shatrughan Sinha, Zeenat Aman, Pran (actor), Amrish Puri|
|Shaan||Ramesh Sippy||Sunil Dutt, Shashi Kapoor, Amitabh Bachchan, Rakhee Gulzar, Kulbhushan Kharbanda|
|1981||Kranti||Manoj Kumar||Manoj Kumar, Dilip Kumar, Hema Malini, Shashi Kapoor, Shatrughan Sinha, Parveen Babi|
|1982||Shakti||Ramesh Sippy||Dilip Kumar, Amitabh Bachchan, Raakhee, Anil Kapoor|
|1985||Zamana||Ramesh Talwar||Rajesh Khanna, Rishi Kapoor, Poonam Dhillon, Ranjeeta Kaur|
|1987||Mr. India||Shekhar Kapur||Anil Kapoor, Sridevi, Amrish Puri|
|1983||Betaab||Hindi||Rahul Rawail||Sunny Deol, Amrita Singh||Written as "Javed Akhtar"|
|1984||Duniya||Ramesh Talwar||Dilip Kumar, Rishi Kapoor, Amrita Singh|
|Mashaal||Urdu||Yash Chopra||Dilip Kumar, Anil Kapoor, Waheeda Rehman|
|1985||Saagar||Ramesh Sippy||Rishi Kapoor, Kamal Haasan, Dimple Kapadia|
|Arjun||Rahul Rawail||Sunny Deol, Dimple Kapadia|
|Meri Jung||Subhash Ghai||Anil Kapoor, Meenakshi Sheshadri|
|1987||Dacait||Rahul Rawail||Sunny Deol, Raakhee|
|1989||Main Azaad Hoon||Tinnu Anand||Amitabh Bachchan, Shabana Azmi|
|1992||Khel||Rakesh Roshan||Anil Kapoor, Madhuri Dixit|
|1993||Roop Ki Rani Choron Ka Raja||Satish Kaushik||Anil Kapoor, Sridevi|
|1995||Prem||Hindi||Sanjay Kapoor, Tabu|
|1998||Kabhi Na Kabhi||Priyadarshan||Anil Kapoor, Jackie Shroff|
|2004||Lakshya||Farhan Akhtar||Hrithik Roshan, Preity Zinta, Amitabh Bachchan|
|2006||Don: The Chase Begins Again||Shah Rukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra|
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JA: I write dialogue in Urdu, but the action and descriptions are in English. Then an assistant transcribes the Urdu dialogue into Devnagari because most people read Hindi. But I write in Urdu.