MUMBAI: Bollywood said goodbye to Yash Chopra, who had died in a city hospital on Sunday, as the legendary director was cremated in Juhu on Monday.
Amitabh Bachchan, Shahrukh Khan, Yash Chopra’s two sons Aditya and Uday and other Bollywood stars were present at Pawan Hans Crematorium to pay their last respects to the legend.
The 80-year-old filmmaker and screenwriter was admitted to Lilavati hospital in Bandra after reportedly contracting the dengue fever.
According to reports, Chopra died after he suffered multi organ failure.
The King of Romance on Indian celluloid produced such major films as Silsila, Kabhi Kabhi, Chandni, Lamhe, Dil Toh Pagal Hai and Veer Zaara.
He was working to complete Jab Tak Hai Jaan – which will now be known as the last film of his directorial journey which began in 1959 with Dhool Ka Phool. A song for Jab Tak Hai Jaan was yet to be shot in Switzerland, but the illness forced Chopra to postpone the journey.
His last film stars Chopra’s favourite actor Shah Rukh Khan, Katrina Kaif and Anushka Sharma. It was due for Diwali release.
Chopra was one of Bollywood’s last links with Lahore where he was born on September 27, 1932. As he told Shahrukh Khan, who hosted a live TV chat with Chopra on his 81st birthday a few days ago, that initially he wanted to become an engineer. But then with Rs 200 in his pocket, he landed in Mumbai and started his film career an assistant director to his older brother BR Chopra and IS Johar.
His major success came in 1965 with the hugely successful film Waqt which had many top stars of the day – Sunil Dutt, Sharmila Tagore, Shashi Kapoor, Raaj Kumar, Balraj Sahni, Madan Puri, and Achala Sachdev. It was the first multi-starrer film in Bollywood.
Chopra set up Yash Raj Films in 1973, and his first film under this banner was the successful `Daag: A Poem of Love’ that featured Sharmila Tagore and Rajesh Khanna.
Superstar Amitabh Bachchan owes a lot to Yash Chopra because it was his Deewar in 1975 which established the Big B as an angry young man in the mind of filmgoers.
Chandni in 1989, which was Sridevi’s most Bollywood successful, was Chopra’s first romantic Hindi film.
On his long cinematic journey, Chopra won six National Film Awards and 11 Filmfare Awards. In 2001, he added the Dadasaheb Phalke Award to his long list of achievements. Chopra’s awards list was topped by the Padma Bhushan that he won in 2005.
He is survived by his wife Pamela and sons Aditya and Uday.
Reaction from Bollywood:
Sridevi: Deeply saddened by the shocking news of Yashji passing away, he was full of warmth & affection whenever we met, he will be missed forever.
Amitabh Bachchan: Yash Chopra passes away… Just now a hour ago.
Vinod Khanna: I am taken aback by this sad news. One of the few filmmakers with the ability to transcend across time, I have been lucky to have worked with him. Right from the early days, one aspect I admired about him always was his interest in all kinds of cinema. He would keep himself informed of various filmmakers across India and abroad. Maybe this is why he could make films on subjects and themes that were contemporary and sometimes taboo also.
Anil Kapoor: It is a great loss to everyone that Yashji is no more. An entire chapter in the history of Indian cinema is over. I have had the privilege to work with him in his films as well as those under his banner. He was a man of versatility. My films with him, Vijay, Mashaal and Lamhe, have all been different. Some of his films were way ahead of their time, especially Lamhe. A subject like that, if addressed today, may have worked. That was his vision.
Dilip Kumar: Shattering, hard to accept. Yash was more than a friend, a brother. I am numb and have no words to express my grief.
Madhuri Dixit: Just got the news that Yashji passed away. He was one of the giants of cinema. My deepest condolences to his family. We will all miss him.
Juhi Chawla: I am so shocked to hear of his sudden demise. I met him the other day at Amitabh Bachchanji’s birthday party and he was joking with me for so long. Getting to work in a Yashji film was the greatest achievement of my life. I had worked in Aaina, a movie produced by the banner, but when Yashji called me for Darr, I was overwhelmed. On Yashji’s set everything was so organised. He had a bound script and he knew exactly what he wanted from his actors.
Mahesh Bhatt: Heartbreaking news Yash Chopra passes away!
Lara Dutta: All I ever really knew of Hindi films began with Yash uncles brand of cinema. RIP Yash Chopra ji. Will miss you terribly.
Sushmita Sen: Mr. Yash Chopra..a legend of love and love stories passes away my condolences to all his loved ones. Deeply saddened. Rest in Peace Sir…
Akshay Kumar: I’m in shock and numb, can’t believe the news, the man who immortalised love, Mr. Yash Chopra is no more. May his soul rest.
Shilpa Shetty: Just heard the tragic news of Yash uncle passing away. The epitome of Romance a great man…will miss him dearly. R.I.P Yash Uncle.
Preity Zinta: Yash Uncle we will miss you. May god give peace to your soul. R. I. P.
Manoj Bajpai: Yashji is no more with us in this world. numbed to hear this just when I arrive in Mumbai. What a loss! May you rest in peace Yashji.
Rahul Bose: Terrible, terrible news. R.I.P. Yashji.