Blinded by the Light, is about a British Pakistani teenager called Javed who falls in love with the music of Bruce Springsteen – and it’s based on a true story! The real Javed is journalist Sarfraz Manzoor, and Blinded by the Light is based on his book Greetings From Bury Park (a spin on Springsteen’s album title Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J.) which was published in 2007 and recounts Manzoor’s formative years and his discovery of Springsteen’s music.

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Blinded by the Light was also made with the blessing of Springsteen himself who allowed 17 of his songs to be used in the movie – including the previously unreleased track “I’ll Stand By You,” which was originally recorded for Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, but didn’t end up being used in that movie. Blinded by the Light ends by showing a photo of Manzoor with Springsteen, as well as a photo of the real Roops (Javed’s Sikh friend, who introduces him to Springsteen’s music), and a photo of Manzoor’s real parents.


Like Javed Manzoor did end up going to Manchester University though he studied Economics and Politics rather than creative writing. His professional career has ranged from work as a TV news reporter to writing books articles documentaries and radio programs. Greetings From Bury Park and Blinded by the Light aren’t the only works where Manzoor has explored his early life and relationship with Springsteen’s music. He also made a documentary called Luton Actually that explored the journey his family made from Pakistan to Britain when Manzoor was just two years old and a radio documentary called From Luton Streets to Jersey Shores in which he compares his own home town to Springsteen’s.

Javed and Roops take the trip to the States. It inspires Javed to write something new. Back home, Noor tells Malik to reconcile with Javed and reminds him that he left his own family and country at a young age.

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