Mumbai: Veteran actor and filmmaker Rakesh Kumar passed away after a long battle with cancer. He was 81. Kumar breathed his last on November 10.
Kumar was the helmer of several box office successes of acting legend Amitabh Bachchan through the 70s and 80s, Kumar produced blockbusters such as 'Khoon Pasina' (1977), 'Mr. Natwarlal' (1979) and 'Yaarana' (1981).
Before charting his course as a successful filmmaker, Kumar was also an assistant director during filming for the 1973 classic 'Zanjeer'.
Kumar is survived by his wife, son and daughter.
On learning the news of the death of the man behind some of his most loved and celebrated films, Bachchan took to his blog and paid his condolences.
In a post titled 'Day 5387', Bachchan, or Big B as he is called, expressed grief over Kumar's passing. Turning nostalgic, he revisited the "great camaraderie on sets and elsewhere, socially, during events and Holi" that Kumar shared with him.
In extremely heartfelt words, Bachchan expressed how Kumar's passing was a loss not just for him but the film industry as well.
"His sense of screenplay and direction, writing and execution on the spur of the moment and the fun times on location during Nattu and Yaarana .. his complete faith in his worth .. and the ease with which he would grant us the liberty of skipping shootings on the odd day, just to be able to spend time relaxing fooling around and being in the company of uncontrollable laughter and gaiety," Bachchan wrote.
Bachchan also described the filmamker-actor as the "most affable and kind hearted human, ready to step up to any kind of inconvenience that artists that worked with him, faced .. !"
Bachchan explained why he wouldn't be able to summon the strength to attend Kumar's funeral. "I shall not be able to bear the sight of an inert Rakesh," the legend wrote.
While pained over Kumar's death, Bachchan ended his blog post on an optimistic note. "Sad news percolates on some other near and dear too .. but life challenges each hour and you get up bruised and damaged to brush off the injuries and walk .. then canter .. and finally run .. !!" Bachchan wrote.