Sridevi: Bollywood superstar dies at 54 of heart attack
Bollywood superstar Sridevi Kapoor has died of a heart attack, her family says. She was 54.
The actress known simply as Sridevi had been with her family in Dubai for her nephew’s wedding.
She featured over five decades in almost 300 films, in classics like Mr India, Chandni, ChaalBaaz and Sadma.
She was considered one of the very few Indian female superstars capable of huge box office success without the support of a male hero.
From the age of four, she had worked in films in the Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada and Hindi languages.
Crowds gathered outside Sridevi’s home in Mumbai as news emerged of her death. Bollywood figures and political leaders reacted with shock.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted that he was “saddened by the untimely demise of noted actor Sridevi”, while Indian President Ram Nath Kovind said her death had left millions of fans heartbroken.
Saddened by the untimely demise of noted actor Sridevi. 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: PM @narendramodi
— PMO India (@PMOIndia) February 25, 2018
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, paid tribute to the late star, writing on Twitter: “Really enjoyed meeting Bollywood icon Sri Devi on my recent trip to India.
“So sad to hear the news of the death of such a terrifically talented actress, performer and producer.”
Really enjoyed meeting Bollywood icon Sri Devi on my recent trip to India. So sad to hear the news of the death of such a terrifically talented actress, performer and producer. #SriDevi pic.twitter.com/5wDvH8xUwD
— Sadiq Khan (@SadiqKhan) February 24, 2018
A fluid talent
By Sudha G Tilak, in Delhi
The rise of Sridevi is an extraordinary chapter in the nation’s film industry.
Her acting career began at the tender age of four and by 13 she was cast in the adult role of a complicated woman avenging her lover’s death.
It was not long before directors took note of her versatile acting abilities and the offers started to snowball.
She became a box office magnet from the 1970s to the late 1990s with her numerous films spanning more than five Indian languages.
But while Sridevi’s screen presence was a glamorous one, her private life was one of heartbreak, loss and estrangement.
How did she die?
The actress was in the United Arab Emirates to attend the wedding of her nephew, Mohit Marwah.
Sridevi’s husband Boney Kapoor and daughter Khushi were with her when she passed away on Saturday, reports say.
Her brother-in-law Sanjay Kapoor said it had happened “roughly around” 23:00-23:30 (19:00-19:30 GMT), indianexpress.com reports.
He did not provide any further details.
Why was she such a huge box office draw?
She debuted as a lead actress in a Bollywood film in 1978, soon becoming one of India’s biggest film stars.
— Filmfare (@filmfare) February 24, 2018
The versatile actress decided to take a break from the film industry after the release of Judaai in 1997.
She made a comeback in 2012, starring in English Vinglish.
In 2013, the Indian government awarded her the Padma Shri – the fourth highest civilian honour.
How are fans reacting?
Social media sites are being flooded with condolences, with many users expressing shock that the actress died still relatively young.
— Preity zinta (@realpreityzinta) February 24, 2018
She came. She saw. She conquered.
And went back to the heavens from where she came. RIP Sridevi garu.IRREPLACEABLE pic.twitter.com/NB4GozzWYi
— Jr NTR (@tarak9999) February 25, 2018
RIP #Sridevi ?? One of the absolute queens of Bollywood. Gone too soon ?
— Arjun (@ArjunArtist) February 24, 2018
Never known anyone who was so painfully shy, so quiet off screen, who just transformed into a force of nature when the cameras came on. She was an interviewer’s nightmare, but the movie-buff’s dream. You will be missed, Sridevi. Thank you for the movies.
— Rajeev Masand (@RajeevMasand) February 24, 2018
The loss of #Sridevi is a big deal for Bollywood but also an entire generation, like mine, that grew up with her movies. She went supernova in the 80s. She had charm, personality, wit and range. MR INDIA remains a classic. So sad that she passed so young.
— Wajahat Ali (@WajahatAli) February 24, 2018