Legendary Bollywood Actor Sridevi passes away in Dubai
Shock and grief hit the country today as Bollywood icon Sridevi, loved by millions for her roles in movies like “Mr India“, “Chandni” and “Himmatwala“, died of a cardiac arrest in Dubai, where she had gone to attend the wedding of actor and relative Mohit Marwah. The 54-year-old, who had taken a long break from the movies after her marriage to Boney Kapoor, had returned to the silver screen six years ago with “English Vinglish” and worked in three films since.
The sudden death of the star – who ruled the commercial space and did critically acclaimed films “Sadma” and “Lamhe” and was especially noted for her impeccable timing as a comedienne – has shocked Bollywood and legions of her fans.
“She will be in the textbooks of Indian cinema; Sridevi was a complete actor in her own right, flawless and dignified,” said Subhash Ghai, who was her director in ‘Karma‘ in 1986, when Sridevi was still finding her foothold in Bollywood.Over a five-decade career, the actor who made her debut on silver screen at the age of four in Tamil movie Thoonaivan, had worked in 300 films. She made her entry in Bollywood in 1975 with the blockbuster romance Julie, but had also ruled the Tamil, Malayalam, Telugu, Hindi, and Kannada film industry. In 2013, she received Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award.
A shy introvert in real life, Sridevi came alive in front of the cameras. “After camera, start sound…she just transformed…and stay in her character self until ‘cut’ was said…she was a bijlee in front of the camera,” Subhash Ghai said.
In the ’80s, though Bollywood was dominated by male superstars, Sridevi’s luminous style and impeccable comic timing brought her the tag of Bollywood’s first woman superstar. Her name, most of the times, guaranteed a film’s success and her dance moves in songs like “Hawa Hawai“, the sultry “Kaate nahi kat-te” and the snake dance in “Nagina” were copied by legions of fans.
Sridevi took a 15-year-long break from movies in 1997, after she got married to producer Boney Kapoor.
She made a searing return in 2012’s “English Vinglish“. From the very first frame it was evident that the actor has lost none of her Mr India charm. As Shashi, the housewife struggling to learn English after being belittled by her family, her performance received rave reviews. The following year, she also made an appearance in Bombay Talkies.
Sridevi stunned fans with her performance as a villainous queen in “Puli“, which also marked her comeback to Tamil cinema after a gap of more than two decades.
Last year, she was seen in revenge-drama – “Mom” – opposite Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Akshaye Khanna. She shot for a special appearance in superstar Shah Rukh Khan’s upcoming film – “Zero” – which releases in December.
On her Twitter handle, Sridevi – who had last retweeted a tribute performance originally pictured on her – preferred to describe herself as “Actor-MOM-Housewife-Actor Again!”