Rishi Kapoor, who starred in nearly a hundred Bollywood films throughout his acting career, died Thursday morning at the Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital in Mumbai, according to the Hindustan Times. He was 67.
Kapoor, who was diagnosed with leukemia in 2018, was admitted to the hospital on Wednesday. Kapoor’s older brother Randhir Kapoor, who’s also a Bollywood actor, said at the time, “It’s true that he has been admitted to the hospital. He is in Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital. He was not keeping well and had some problem, so we admitted him early this morning.”
When asked if it was an emergency situation Randhir said, “That’s why he has gone to the hospital. But I know that he will be alright. Neetu (his wife) is by his side.”
The star of hit Bollywood films such as Amar Akbar Anthony, Laila Majnu and Bobby spent a year living in New York City undergoing treatment following his initial diagnosis. After returning to India in September 2019, Kapoor continued to lay low in the following months but was able to return to work and start pre-production on the film Sharmaji Namkeen.
Kapoor Was Hospitalized Twice In February But Insisted That He Was Fine
Kapoor, the second son of the late Bollywood film director and actor Raj Kapoor, suffered a few setbacks in February. The first time he was admitted to the hospital in Delhi following an infection. The second time he was admitted in South Mumbai after suffering a viral fever, according to the Economic Times.
The actor, who had amassed 3.5 million followers on Twitter, shared an update on his health on the social media site. He tweeted on February 3:
I have been overwhelmed by all your concern about my health. Thank you. I have been filming in Delhi past 18 days and because of the Pollution and my low count of neutrophils, I caught an infection whereby I had to be hospitalized. I was running a slight fever and on an investigation, Dr.s found a patch that could have lead to pneumonia was detected and is being cured. People seem to have assumed a lot different. I put to rest all those stories and look forward to entertain and love you.
On March 7, Kapoor tweeted, “This chest infection and pneumonia was a real downer at the wrong time. With the grace of God, l am on the road to recovery! Immense love and respect.”
Kapoor’s Family Members Are Also Huge Indian Cinema Stars
Kapoor’s family, which includes Neetu, his wife of nearly 40 years, daughter Riddhima, son Ranbir, who followed in his family’s acting footsteps, and his siblings Randhir, Ritu Nanda, Rima Jain and Rajiv Kapoor, issued the following statement:
Our dear Rishi Kapoor passed away peacefully at 8:45am IST in hospital today after a two-year battle with leukemia. The doctors and medical staff at the hospital said he kept them entertained to the last. He remained jovial and determined to live to the fullest right through two years of treatment across two continents. Family, friends, food, and films remained his focus and everyone who met him during this time was amazed at how he did not let his illness get the better of him.
He was grateful for the love of his fans that poured in from the world over. In his passing, they would all understand that he would like to be remembered with a smile and not with tears.
In this hour of personal loss, we also recognize the world is going through a very difficult and troubled time. There are numerous restrictions 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. He would not have it any other way.
Rishi Kapoor’s Death Comes One Day After Fellow Iconic Bollywood Star Irrfan Khan Died
The tragic news of Kapoor’s death was an especially devastating blow to Bollywood fans, as it was only one day earlier that they mourned the passing of Irrfan Khan. Khan died from complications of a colon infection after being diagnosed with a neuroendocrine tumor in 2018.
Following the death of Kapoor, Bollywood crossover actress Priyanka Chopra called it the “end of an era” in a heartfelt tribute on Twitter. A day earlier, she said of Khan, “The charisma you brought to everything you did was pure magic. Your talent forged the way for so many in so many avenues… You inspired so many of us. #IrrfanKhan you will truly be missed. Condolences to the family.”
Social Media Flooded With Tributes to Kapoor & His Family
Amitabh Bachchan, who co-starred with Kapoor in numerous films, was one of the first public figures to tweet about his friend’s death, after which the social media site was filled with beautiful tributes to the beloved Bollywood star.