Rishi Kapoor: Bollywood’s romantic hero dies at 67

Image copyright
NASA

Veteran Bollywood actor Rishi Kapoor, famed for his romantic roles, has died of cancer aged 67.

He was part of the Kapoor acting dynasty which has long dominated Bollywood, the Hindi film industry.

The actor made a huge splash in 1973 with his first lead role in Bobby – a teenage love story.

He played the romantic lead in dozens of films for over two decades, after which he made a successful transition to character roles.

Rishi Kapoor debuted as a child actor in 1970 in his father Raj Kapoor’s film, Mera Naam Joker.

Several of his films in the 1980s and 90s – Khel Khel Mein, Karz and Chandni – became massive box-office hits.

He had a second coming in this decade, doing character roles and interesting cameos in small films.

The actor’s death comes a day after the passing away of Bollywood actor Irrfan Khan.

Kapoor was diagnosed with cancer in 2018 and returned to India last September after a year-long treatment in New York.

He was taken to hospital on Wednesday morning after he complained of breathing difficulties, his brother Randhir Kapoor told Press Trust of India.

Tributes have been pouring in for Kapoor from his fellow Bollywood actors and politicians.

Amitabh Bachchan who worked in several hit films with Kapoor tweeted: “He’s GONE .. ! Rishi Kapoor .. gone .. just passed away .. I am destroyed !”

Congress party leader Rahul Gandhi also tweeted about his death: “This is a terrible week for Indian cinema, with the passing of another legend, actor Rishi Kapoor. A wonderful actor, with a huge fan following across generations, he will be greatly missed.”

Kapoor himself, was also prolific on Twitter, frequently commenting on controversial issues and sometimes getting into heated exchanges with people on the social media platform.

His last tweet was an appeal to people not to attack medical staff at the frontlines of the fight against the coronavirus saying, “we have to win this war together”.