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Bollywood legend Shashi Kapoor dies aged 79

Bollywood legend Shashi Kapoor dies aged 79

Veteran Bollywood actor and producer Shashi Kapoor has died aged 79 after a long illness. Kapoor died on Monday (Dec 4) at Kokliben Hospital in Mumbai, where he was being treated for a kidney ailment, his nephew Randhir Kapoor said.

Veteran Bollywood actor and producer Shashi Kapoor has died aged 79. Kapoor, who acted in huge hits like Deewar and Kabhie Kabhie, had been ill for some time and was in hospital.

He was a member of the Kapoor dynasty, which has dominated the Hindi film industry for decades. He won several national film awards and was awarded the Padma Bhushan civilian honour by the Indian government in 2011. He also acted in a number of British and American films.

Shashi Kapoor died at the Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital in the western city of Mumbai. "Yes he has passed away. He had kidney problem since several years. He was on dialysis for several years," his nephew, actor Randhir Kapoor, told local media.

The actor was married to late English actress Jennifer Kendal, with whom he set up Mumbai's iconic Prithvi Theatre in 1978. Jennifer Kendal died in 1984.

Shashi Kapoor began his career as a child actor and appeared in more than 150 films, including a dozen in English. He became known internationally for his roles in Merchant Ivory productions like "Shakespeare-wallah" and "Heat and Dust".

In 2015, he was given the prestigious Dada Saheb Phalke Award, the highest honour in Indian cinema. Kapoor was known for his charming smile and was often described by his fans as the "handsomest star ever". He had a huge fan following among women.

He was cast alongside superstar Amitabh Bachchan in some of the biggest Bollywood blockbusters of the 1970s and 1980s, and the two actors played brothers, best friends or rivals.

His comment in Deewar -- "Mere paas maa hai" (But I have mother's support) -- during a tense confrontation with screen-sibling Bachchan tops the list of best Bollywood lines for millions of fans around the globe.

Over the years, it has found its way on to merchandise like shoulder bags, coffee mugs and cushion covers.

Shashi Kapoor, brother of fellow actors Raj and Shammi, was a member of a family dynasty in India's Bollywood film industry. The youngest son of Prithviraj Kapoor, a veteran of Bollywood and the theatre, he starred in more than 100 films in a career spanning more than five decades. Some of his best known movies included Deewaar (1975), Satyam Shivam Sundaram (1978) and Suhaag (1979).

As news of his death spread, fans took to social media to express their grief and pay tributes.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi led tributes on social media to the superstar, saying his acting "will be remembered for generations to come".

Kapoor, who is survived by two sons and a daughter, will be cremated on Tuesday, according to local media reports.