Bollywood bids farewell to 'King of Romance' Yash Chopra
Veteran Bollywood film director and producer Yash Chopra died Sunday in a Mumbai hospital, news reports said, a week after he was diagnosed with dengue fever. He was 80.
Chopra was admitted to Lilawati hospital on October 13.
"He had been suffering from complications of dengue for a long time. He died from multiple organ failure," a hospital official told the online Times of India newspaper.
Dengue - a common mosquito-borne viral infection for which there is no cure - is fatal in a small number of cases.
"It is with deep regret that we announce the sad demise of Mr. Yash Chopra, who breathed his last at around 5:30pm today," Yash Raj, the production company that he founded, said in a statement.
Considered one the greatest Hindi filmmakers, Chopra's career spanned more than five decades and 50 films.
He announced he was retiring last month after concluding the filming for his latest directorial project, titled Jab Tak Hai Jaan (As Long As I Live), featuring A-listers Shah Rukh Khan and Katrina Kaif, to be released on November 13.
Chopra was also known for launching the careers of Bollywood icon Amitabh Bachchan and superstar Shah Rukh Khan.
"It's a great loss to Indian cinema. He has been an institution in the Hindi film industry, a guru for filmmakers like me," director Subhash Ghai was quoted as saying by NDTV network.
Tributes poured in on Monday for the renowned Indian filmmaker, dubbed Bollywood's ‘king of romance’.
With Chopra's cremation due later in the day, newspapers and TV channels dedicated coverage to the Hindi cinema legend who made his name over several decades of directing, producing and screen-writing.
The Mumbai Mirror and Mid Day tabloids published full front-page tributes to Chopra, while the Indian Express remembered ‘The Maker of Dreams’, describing him as "one of Bollywood's most successful enterprises".
Some of the industry's biggest names took to Twitter to remember Chopra, including superstar actor Amitabh Bachchan, who recently turned 70.
"Yash Chopra – 44 years of association... of creativity, friendship, fun and family ties," wrote Bachchan, who starred in some of Chopra's biggest hits including Deewar (The Wall), Kabhi Kabhie (Sometimes) and Silsila.
Famous playback singer Asha Bhosle, whose daughter committed suicide earlier this month, described Chopra as a family member.
"Just as I was getting over the grief of my daughter, my brother Yash Chopra... has left me," she wrote.
Fellow Bollywood director Madhur Bhandarkar said on Twitter he was shocked by the loss of a movie legend. "Romance in cinema will always be incomplete," he added.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was quick to honour the late director on Sunday night, describing him as "an icon of Indian cinema.
"He entertained many generations with his rare creativity," Singh said. "He had an aesthetic talent to make his films look larger than life. His flourish to essay romance and social drama was unmatched."
"He established the popularity of Indian cinema internationally and was honoured by many governments. He will be remembered by millions."
Indian media had previously reported that Lahore-born Chopra was recovering well under medical care.
His funeral is to take place in Mumbai at 3pm on Monday.
Watch the video for The Medley from his 2002 film Mujhse Dosti Karoge, a song and dance sequence loved by many, which was also a tribute to Chopra's friend and lyricist Anand Bakshi who died shortly before the film was completed: