2016 was a rough year for the world for many reasons, including the fact that many iconic celebrities passed away. We were all hoping we wouldn’t lose anyone in 2017. However, the legendary actor Om Puri has passed away at the mere age of 66! On 6 January 2017, Om Puri died at the age of 66, after having a heart attack at his residence in Andheri, Mumbai.
Om Puri was one of the few Indian actors who was able to work beyond Bollywood to leave a mark in western films too. He debuted in 1976 with the Marathi film Ghashiram Kotwal, and went on to star in several art-house films. Puri did many unconventional roles and managed to always to full justice to any character he was given. He became internationally known due to his appearances in many British movies like My Son the Fanatic (1997) and The Parole Officer (2001). His most notable British film remains East Is East (1999). Puri also appeared in Hollywood films including City of Joy (1992), opposite Patrick Swayze; Wolf (1994) with Jack Nicholson; The Ghost and the Darkness (1996) opposite Val Kilmer; Charlie Wilson’s War (2007) with Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts; and The Hundred-Foot Journey (2014) with Helen Mirren.
Although he is mostly known as a character actor and for his more serious roles, he also had successful comedies including Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro (1983), Chachi 420 (1997), Hera Pheri (2000), Chor Machaye Shor (2002), Malamaal Weekly (2006) and Oh My God (2012).
Puri won many awards for his work in cinema. He has also been the recipient of the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award of India, in 1990. Most notably, in 2004, he was made an honorary Officer of the Order of the British Empire.
Om Puri will definitely be missed in Bollywood! RIP.