Bollywood star Sridevi, who charmed the audience with stellar performances in several films such as ‘Mr India’, ‘Chaalbaaz’ and ‘Lamhe’ during her career spanning over four decades, passed away in Dubai saturday night.
She was 54.
The actor, wife of producer Boney Kapoor, died reportedly due to cardiac arrest in Dubai, where she had gone along with her family to attend her nephew Mohit Marwah’s wedding.
Her mortal remains will arrive in India from Dubai on Monday, her family said in a statement.
“Boney Kapoor, Jhanvi, Khushi (daughters) and the entire Kapoor, Ayyappan and Marwah family is deeply bereaved and shocked with the untimely loss of Sridevi Kapoor,” the statement, issued this evening by the Yash Raj Films (YRF) on behalf of the family, said.
The mortal remains are expected to be brought by a chartered flight.
While some of her family members returned from Dubai after the wedding, Sridevi, Boney and her younger daughter Khushi stayed back.
Her elder daughter Janhvi had not travelled with the family because of a shooting schedule for her upcoming Bollywood film, her first in the industry.
Sridevi, a Padma Shri awardee, made her Bollywood debut in 1978 with “Solva Sawan”. But it was only after five years with Jeetendra-starrer “Himmatwala” that she attained commercial success.
Before her entry into Bollywood, the actor had been a known face in South Indian films. She made her debut as a child artist in in Tamil film “Thunaivan” in 1969. She also worked in Malayalam, Telugu and Kannada films.
Sridevi’s beguiling eyes, scintillating screen presence and acting prowess soon made her one of the most sought-after actors in the Hindi film industry.
While films such as “Mawaali” (1983), “Tohfa” (1984), “Mr India” (1987) and “Chandni” (1989) kept her at the top in the box-office game, her outings in “Sadma” (1983), “ChaalBaaz” (1989), “Lamhe” (1991), and “Gumrah” (1993) earned her critical acclaim.
She went on a hiatus for 15 years after starring in home production “Judaai”, co-starring her brother-in-law Anil Kapoor and Urmila Matondkar. It was director Gauri Shinde’s “English Vinglish” in 2012 that marked Sridevi’s comeback.
Her nuanced performance as a middle-class woman, learning to speak English to feel accepted by her family, won accolades, and the film was also a commercial success.
Last year, she was seen in revenge-drama, “Mom”, opposite Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Akshaye Khanna. She also shot for a special appearance in superstar Shah Rukh Khan’s upcoming film, “Zero”, which releases in December.
Sridevi was awarded the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian honour, in 2013.
Minutes after the news of her death broke, many Bollywood actors such as Amitabh Bachchan, Priyanka Chopra, Sushmita Sen, Sidharth Malhotra and Riteish Deshmukh took to Twitter to offer their condolences.
Personalities such as Lata Mangeshkar, Kajol, Hrithik Roshan and South superstars Rajanikanth, Kamal Haasan, Chiranjeevi, Nagarjuna Akkineni and “Baahubali” director S S Rajamouli also offered their condolences on the death of the legendary actor.
Director-producer Karan Johar recalled having a fan moment when he first met the superstar on the sets of his father’s film “Gumrah”.
President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Information and Broadcasting Minister Smriti Irani and Congress president Rahul Gandhi also condoled her death.
“Shocked to hear of passing of movie star Sridevi. She has left millions of fans heartbroken. Her performances in films such as Moondram Pirai, Lamhe and English Vinglish remain an inspiration for other actors. My condolences to her family and close associates #PresidentKovind,” a tweet from the official Twitter handle of the President said.
Naidu tweeted, “Felt very sad over the sudden demise of popular actress Sridevi. She was an extremely versatile and talented film star, who had acted in Telugu, Hindi and other South Indian languages.”
Modi said he was saddened by Sridevi’s untimely demise.
“She was a veteran of the film industry, whose long career included diverse roles and memorable performances. My thoughts are with her family and admirers in this hour of grief. May her soul rest in peace,” the PMO tweeted.
Irani, in an emotional letter, remembered the actor as her “favourite star who defined joy in my childhood”.
Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director, Toronto International Film Festival, tweeted, “Shocked to hear of the passing of India’s legendary Sridevi. Honoured to have been in her presence in 2012 when she visited Toronto for English Vinglish. She made countless millions fall in love with her characters.” PTI