Mumbai, Oct 1 (IANS) A buzz currently doing the rounds in Bollywood is that the industry's octogenarian star Dev Anand, who celebrated his 85th birthday Sep 26, has sold off his Anand Recording Studio here to a builder for Rs.500 million.
But the deal could not be confirmed as the star is currently in London for the launch of the international edition of his autobiography, 'Romancing with Life'. He is expected to return to Mumbai Oct 5.
The rumour has it that a 12-storey apartment building will come up at the prime Anand Recording Studio property on leafy Zigzag Road in Pali Hill in Mumbai and Dev Anand will also get two large flats there.
Established in 1986, Anand Recording Studio, one of Bollywood's premier sound and dubbing facility, was virtually a home for the veteran star for the past 22 years.
It has been in the penthouse of the four-storey building that he spends the better part of the day, than in his Union Park bungalow a little distance away, when he is not shooting for his movies.
He conceptualised, wrote stories and scripts, and interviewed many of the newcomers he launched in his movies in this cozy penthouse dominated by forest green colour.
Occasionally, he also fetes celebrities and entertains media persons there.
Ever since the office of his production house, Navketan, was shifted from Khira Nagar in Santacruz in north-west suburb of Mumbai two decades ago to the Anand Recording Theatre complex, it has also served as his office.
His only son, Suneil Anand, looks after the day-to-day activities of the recording studio, which was modernized and fitted with the latest of digital sound gadgets imported from the US last year.
In the last two decades, more than 3,000 movies in many Indian languages, including English, have been mixed and surround-sound mixed at the recording studio, conveniently situated off Pali Hill Road in Mumbai's posh Bandra suburb.
Pali Hill locality, home to a number of Bollywood celebrities, including Dilip Kumar, Pran, Prem Chopra and Sanjay Dutt, still haes some old-world charm left amidst the concrete jungle, interspersed with old-style cottages.
A residential complex has already come up where stood the bungalow once owned by the veteran actor, Pran.
Recently, there was a rumour that Dilip Kumar also wanted to hand his bungalow over to a builder. The reported move was protested by local residents as the bungalow, situated opposite the one where Saira Banu's mother, Naseem Banu, once lived, has the heritage value.
But the builders, forever on the lookout for prime properties, give their owners tempting offers and many Bollywood veterans, who were early settlers in localities which have since become prime areas of Mubai, have succumbed to these.