Penguin Random House India proudly announces the acquisition of a new book by renowned Indian poet, lyricist and film director Gulzar. In this book, the working title for which is Actually… I Met Them: A Memoir, the author will recount his encounters with the stalwarts of Indian cinema, art, literature and music. It will be published under the Hamish Hamilton imprint in 2021.

In this fascinating book, Gulzar Saab shares candid anecdotes from his association with some of the most eminent people he had known and worked with over a long period of time. From Satyajit Ray to R.D. Burman, Kishore Kumar, Bimal Roy, Ritwik Ghatak, Hrishikesh Mukherjee, Pandit Ravi Shankar, Pandit Bhimsen Joshi, Mahasweta Devi and Samaresh Basu, among others.  In addition, there will be chapters on contemporary filmmakers, writers, poets, musicians, singers and actors. The book will open a window for readers to get to know some of the doyens of Indian art, culture and cinema through the lens of the gifted artist as he shares his special memories and experiences of working with them. Studded with rare photographs and scintillating humour, this book will be a compelling tale for a wide spectrum of readers.

The author of the book, Gulzar Saab, says, ‘Memories don’t dry up really. They keep floating somewhere between the conscious and the subconscious mind. It’s a great feeling to swim there sometime. Pick up a few bubbly moments and cherish them again.’

‘I was fortunate to be born in the era of some of the greatest masters, and was lucky that I actually met them. I got a chance to work with a few. There were Gurus, friends and colleagues among them.’

Commenting on the upcoming book, Premanka Goswami, executive editor, Penguin Random House India, says, ‘We grew up with Gulzar Saab’s works.  His lyrics, poems, short stories and movies are a part of our upbringing and legacy.  He is a wizard with words. Actually… I Met Them will be a valuable addition to India’s publishing landscape.  Just as the author, this book, too, shall be lively, freewheeling, almost lyrical and utterly engaging.  We are thrilled to have Gulzar Saab with us.’

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‘Gulzar Saab is a legend. It has been our privilege at Penguin Random House India to have been his publishers over many years and we are delighted to continue our relationship with this remarkable new book. We are confident Actually… I Met Them will be a treat to his huge and devoted fan base and a wonderful introduction for new Gulzar readers,’ says Meru Gokhale, Publisher of Penguin Press, Penguin Random House India.