Movies

Prakash Mehra bids adieu to the world

MUMBAI: Legendary Bollywood producer-director Prakash Mehra passed away yesterday after prolonged illness.
The 69-year-old Mehra died of pneumonia and multiple organ failure.

It was Mehra who cemented Amitabh Bachchan‘s career with Zanjeer in the early 70s as a angry young man that was followed by stupendous hits Muqaddar Ka Sikander, Laawaris, Namak Halal, Sharabi and Hera Pheri. Jadugar, their last film together in 1989, however, didn‘t do well.

Mehra started his journey in the industry as a production controller in the late 1950s but he switched to direction with Haseena Maan Jayegi in 1968. However, his first success came in 1971 with Mela which brought together the Khan brothers -- Feroz Khan and Sanjay Khan - for the first time on silver screen.

Says Asha Parekh, who along with Dharmendra, worked with Mehra in the 1972 film Samadhi, "The news came as a shock to me, though I knew for some time that he wasn‘t keeping well. Prakashji was a wonderful person to work with. He was a director who knew all the intricacies of cinema. He was a man who believed in detailing everything. I for one have seen him rewriting the dialogues which he didn‘t like."

In his long career, Prakash Mehra produced nine films, directed 22 films and wrote eight films. He even wrote lyrics for Chameli Ki Shaadi and Laawaris.

In 2006 Mehra was bestowed with the Lifetime Achievement award from the India Motion Picture Directors Association (IMPDA) for his commendable contribution to the industry as a Director.

Two years later, in 2008, he was presented with the Lifetime Achievement award from the Indian Motion Picture Producers Association (IMPPA) for his role as a Producer.

Mehra‘s health declined after his wife slipped into a coma. His conditioned further worsened after his wife‘s death. He was in the ICU and on ventilator following lung failure and infection.

Said an industry insider, "Prakashji had a very good sense of music and songs


. Most of the songs of his films were hits. O saathi re tere bina bhi kya jeena."

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