Indian superstar Sridevi’s sudden death in Dubai has been one of the most talked about deaths of the decade. The 54-year old actress reportedly died due to accidental drowning. She is probably the only star that brought Indians and Pakistanis together in their mourning.
We look at other celebrity deaths that shook the world. People across the globe, without discrimination of race or origin, united in mourning these shining stars – all of whom left a mark on generations to come.
- A timeline of events since Sridevi was found dead in Dubai
- Watch: Who was Sridevi?
- Sridevi: The price of being a superstar
- Sridevi: Cause of death is ‘accidentally drowning’
Michael Jackson – 50
1958 - 2009
In 2009, Michael Jackson, known as the King of Pop, was found dead at his home in Los Angeles. He reportedly suffered from a cardiac arrest. In the week after his death, he became the first artist to have sold more than a million digital tracks in a week at 2.6 million.
Elvis Presley – 42
1935 – 1977
A legendary singer, his music withstood the test of time, making Elvis a household name decades after his untimely demise. Presley reportedly died from a pre-existing bowel condition that resulted in the clogging of his intestines. He was found dead in his bathroom in 1977.
Princess Diana – 36
1961 – 1997
While not an entertainment celebrity, British royal Princess Diana surpassed leading celebrities in fans and global stardom. She died in 1997 from injuries sustained in a car accident in Paris. Two others in the car were declared dead on impact.
Marilyn Monroe – 36
1926 – 1962
Monroe was a global icon of the 1950s and was found dead at her home in Los Angeles. A contemporary to legends such as Audrey Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor, she was popularised as a sex symbol. Marilyn was reported to have died of a barbiturate overdose.
Robin Williams – 63
1951 – 2014
Robin Williams was legendary in Hollywood and his suicide in 2014 came as a shocker to all his fans and critics. He is credited with having propelled a comedic revolution in San Francisco in the 1970s. His lead roles in Jumanji, Mrs. Doubtfire, Good Will Hunting and Flubber among others, are unforgettable and iconic. His ex-wife later revealed that he was battling depression and anxiety.
Whitney Houston – 48
1963 – 2012
Whitney still is the only artist to ever chart seven consecutive number one hits on the Billboard Hot 100. She is the first and only woman to have two number one Billboard 200 album awards. Guinness World Records cited her as the most awarded female act of all time in 2009.
On February 11, 2012, Houston was found dead in her guest room at the Beverly Hilton in California. The official coroner's report showed that she had accidentally drowned in the bathtub. Her daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown also passed away in unusual circumstances. She was found lying unresponsive in a bathtub in January, 2015 and stayed in a coma for six months before passing away later that year.
Prince – 57
1958 – 2016
Prince Rogers Nelson, known to the world just as Prince, was found dead in a lift at his Paisley Park residence. Prince was one of the best-selling pop artists of all time, and was famous for his flamboyant outfits, stage performances and musical prowess. Official reports at the time showed a fentanyl overdose as the cause of death.
Freddie Mercury – 45
1946 – 1991
Frederick Mercury was the lead vocalist of the rock band Queen. It is interesting to note that Freddie Mercury, along with his band, went through a resurgence following his death in 1991.
Queen had sold almost 35 million albums in the United States by 2004, out of which more than half was after the 45-year old’s death. He suffered from AIDS, and died of bronchopneumonia a day after announcing that he had contracted the disease.
A few other celebrities whose deaths shocked fans on a global level were Amy Winehouse, Janis Japlin, George Michael, Chester Bannington, Paul Walker, Heath Ledger and Jimi Hendrix, among others.