Rishi Kapoor, popular 1970’s and 80’s Bollywood star and scion of the famous Kapoor acting family, has died. He is 67.

His death was reported by his brother Randhir, “He is no more. He has passed away.” Kapoor had been battling cancer for the past two years and had been treated in New York last year before returning to Mumbai as well.

He was hospitalized on Wednesday evening complaining of breathing difficulties.

Raised in Mumbai into the Kapoor acting group, generally known as Bollywood’s first generation, he was the son of legendary actor-director Raj and grandson of iconic theater and movie star Prithviraj. His brothers Rajiv and Randhir also became actors while the actors Shashi and Shammi included his uncles. Kapoor married the actress Neetu Singh, whom he has co-starred in several films, and their son Ranbir, the clan’s fourth generation, is currently one of Bollywood’s main stars.

Kapoor marked his film debut as a child actor in his father’s movies starting with Shree 420 in 1955, followed in 1970 by a notable turn in Mera Naam Joker. His first break as a movie star came in 1973 in the Bobby blockbuster, directed by his father, and in the next two decades he quickly became one of India’s biggest movie stars.

Rishi Kapoor was renowned for his romantic roles, and he delivered a series of hits, including Amar Akbar Anthony, Laila Majnu, Rafoo Chakkar, Sargam, Karz, Prem Rog, Chandni, Heena, Bol Radha Bol, and Saagar. He starred in nearly 100 movies, in all.

After decades as a movie star, in the 2000s Kapoor moved to what is supporting roles and starred in films like Fanaa, Love Aaj Kal, and Namastey London. He was very involved even in his later years and recently starred in 102 Not Out with Bollywood icon Amitabh Bachchan, with both actors reunifying after nearly three decades. Kapoor’s upcoming projects included The Intern’s Bollywood reboot which was what is supposed to co-starring actress Deepika Padukone to launch production this year.

His last performance on screen was in The Body 2019, an official remake of Spanish film El Cuerpo when Kapoor was in the middle of filming Sharmajee Namkeen.

Bollywood has been shaken by the news of Kapoor’s death, especially as it came a day after the death of equally revered star Irfan Khan. Bachchan tweeted, “He’s gone. Rishi Kapoor, gone, just passed away. I am destroyed.” Aamir Khan tweeted, “We have lost one of the greats today. An incredible actor, a great human being, and 100% a child of Cinema. Thank you for all the joy you added to our lives. Thank you for being the actor and human being that you were. You will be badly missed Rishiji.”

Akshay Kumar posted on Twitter, “It seems like we’re in the midst of a nightmare … just heard the depressing news of # RishiKapoor ji passing away, it’s heartbreaking. He was a legend, a great co-star and a good friend of the family. My thoughts and prayers with his family.”

With India already under lockdown because of the novel coronavirus, the Kapoor family released a statement asking fans not to assemble in public to pay their respects to Kapoor as is the country’s practice. “In this hour of personal loss, we also recognize the world is going through a very difficult and troubled time. There are numerous resrictions around movement and gathering in public. We would like to request all his fans and well-wishers and friends of the family to please respect the laws that are in force,” stated in a statement.

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