He said that he used to sleep in the studio since he could not afford a house with that salary. “Ab Rs 50 mein main kamra toh leke kahin reh nahi sakta tha toh vahin studio mein hi sota tha. Aur studio mein koi kamra mujhe nahi diya gaya rehne ke liye toh kabhi kahin, kabhi kahin (I could not afford a room in Rs 50 so I would just sleep in the studio. I did not have a designated room in the studio so I would just sleep anywhere),” he told BBC News Hindi.
Javed then recalled the time how he used to sleep in the costume room at the Kamalistan studio. When the shooting of Pakeezah was stalled, all the costumes, jewellery and shoes were kept in the room. There were also a few mattresses lying on the floor of that costume room, which came pretty handy for him. “I had no money to go out in the evenings so I would just stay there all evening and check out the almirahs,” he added.
In that costume room, Javed also found three dusty Filmfare trophies that belonged to Meena Kumari. When no one was around, he used to pose with the trophies while standing in front of the mirror and imagine how he would wave and smile if he ever bagged the award. “The first time in my life I touched a film award trophy, and it belonged to Meena Kumari,” Javed added.
In his career, Javed went on to win six Filmfare awards with his partner Salim Khan and won six more awards as an independent lyric and dialogue writer.