South Indian female actresses who successfully paved their way into the Hindi cinema, i.e., Bollywood are no less in number. All these actresses have very convincingly succeeded in blurring the linguistic and topographic boundaries in Indian cinema. To name a few: Padmini, Vyjayantimala, Hema Malini, Rekha, Jayaprada etc. are still fresh in our memory. Sri Devi, too, was one amongst these gifted and talented artists.
The sudden demise of Bollywood actress Sridevi has sent shockwaves throughout the Indian film industry and her fans across the Indian sub-continent. Bollywood celebrities, like Amitabh Bachchan, Rishi Kapoor, Kamal Haasan and Aamir Khan, have mourned and expressed their condolences. Sridevi, 54, died late at Saturday night reportedly due to cardiac arrest in Dubai, where she had gone to attend her nephew Mohit Marwah’s wedding.
A versatile actor, Sridevi made her Bollywood debut in 1978 with "Solva Sawan".But it was only after five years with Jeetendra-starrer "Himmatwala" that she gained commercial success. Her attractive eyes, scintillating screen presence and acting prowess soon made her one of the most sought-after actresses in the Hindi film industry. She was considered one of the very few Indian female superstars capable of huge box office success without the support of a male hero.
While her films like "Mawaali" (1983), "Tohfa" (1984), "Mr India" (1987) and "Chandni" (1989) kept her at the top in the box-office, her other films like "Sadma" (1983), "ChaalBaaz" (1989), "Lamhe" (1991), and "Gumrah" (1993) earned her critical acclaim.
She went for a pause for 15 years after starring in home production "Judaai" co-starring her brother-in-law Anil Kapoor and Urmila Matondkar. it was director Gauri Shinde's "English Vinglish" in 2012 that marked Sridevi's comeback. Her nuanced performance as a middle-class woman, learning to speak English to feel accepted by her family, won her praise, and the film was also a commercial success. She was last seen in 2017 film MOM. Her daughter Janhvi is set to make her Bollywood debut this year.
Starting her career as a child star, Sridevi worked in Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada films before debuting in Hindi films. The Indian government awarded her Padma Shri, the highest civilian honor in 2013. Regarded as Hindi cinema's first "female superstar", she was the recipient of five Film fare Awards. Sridevi ranked amongst the highest-paid actors in the 1980s and 1990s and was considered to be the most popular actress of that era.
Dr. Shiben Krishen Raina
Currently in Ajman (UAE)
Member, Hindi Salahkar Samiti,
Ministry of Law & Justice (Govt. of India)
Senior Fellow, Ministry of Culture (Govt. of India)
Dr. Raina's mini bio can be read here: